We all enjoy our property nice and clean. Still, sometimes accidents or vandalism happen and we need to clean it up. Here is a short guide for graffiti, grease, and gum which all are quite usual sights. Rust and tar guide can be found here.
How to remove graffiti from concrete
One of the most frequently asked home improvement questions is how to remove graffiti from concrete. If you are pondering about the same, you can get the answer to it right here.
Graffiti marks on a concrete surface can be quite unsightly and reduce the curb appeal of your home if the same is present on your boundary wall. Moreover, as concrete is a porous surface, it is more difficult to remove graffiti from it.
However, one of the easiest ways to get rid of graffiti from concrete is by using extra-strength paint thinner. You need to use a wire brush to apply the thinner on the graffiti and let it sit for around 20-25 minutes so that the chemicals present in the thinner can dissolve the color pigments and leave your surface neat and clean. You may need to scrub the surface of a heavy-duty graffiti with a wire brush once again to get rid of any paint residue.
Once the concrete surface is visibly clean, you need to wash it with a high-power garden hose. However, if you want to know about an alternate method of how to remove graffiti from concrete, you can also use an especially formulated graffiti remover for the purpose. Most of these removers are essentially chemical strippers that comprise potassium hydroxide or methylene chloride and citrus-based solvents that dissolve the color pigments without causing any abrasion to the surface.
Whether you select paint thinner or chemical stripper, it is highly recommended that you select a biodegradable variety so that it does not cause any environmental damage. While a paint thinner can work on the color pigments in less than 30 minutes, you need to allow the chemical strippers to soak into the surface for more than a few hours to get effective results. Furthermore, after using chemical strippers, you need to treat the surface with an acid neutralizer.
Apart from these non-abrasive graffiti cleaning agents, the market is also flooded with industrial-strength graffiti removers that do an excellent job but also chafe the outer coating of the concrete surface thus making it more prone to weathering. In fact, these removers are not the desired answer to the question of how to remove graffiti from concrete as the strong chemicals present in them make the cleaned area look different from the remaining surface.
How to remove grease from concrete
You can also learn how to remove grease from concrete in your driveway or garage in a few simple steps and that too with the use of non-toxic products that you can easily find in the store near your place. Begin by spreading a thick layer of sawdust over the grease so that it can soak up the excess lubricant on the surface. It is best to let the sawdust sit on the concrete for a day or two and then you should brush it away gently using a broom and a dustpan.
Once you have removed all the sawdust from the concrete surface, you need to pour some dry cement over the dried grease stain and allow it to sit for 1-2 days’ time. The cement will absorb the grease stain from the surface and leave it stain free. However, just as you removed sawdust, you should sweep away dry cement as well as hosing it down the sewer will clog the pipes.
However, since this technique for how to remove grease from concrete requires the sawdust and dry cement to soak up the lubricant and the stain respectively in a few days’ time make sure that you embark on this DIY project only when the weather forecast is clear for the coming 3-4 days. You can even use kitty litter instead of sawdust for this purpose and it works equally well when it comes to absorbing excess grease from a concrete surface.
If you want to know how to remove grease from concrete using items that are readily available in your kitchen, you will be surprised to know that a few pieces of old clothes or rags and a bottle of Coke is your best bet for the same. Simply blot all the excess grease from the concrete using rags and then pour Coke over the grease stain and let it sit for 8-10 hours.
The acidic components present in this aerated drink help in eating away the oil stain that you can get out easily by blotting the dirty coke and then washing the area with lukewarm soapy water and a stiff-bristled brush. You can even remove oil or lubricant stains from the concrete surface by using a high-pressure washer, though this process will cost you more than the other methods of grease stain removal mentioned above.
How to remove gum from concrete
Lastly, one of the few things that can spoil the beauty of your driveway and make it look downright unhygienic is pieces of dry gum sticking to it. However, you can remove them with ease by using a few common household items and following the step-by-step instructions for how to remove gum from concrete given in the following paragraphs.
Begin by getting all the things that you need to remove the pieces of sticky chewing gums from the concrete. These include a few ice cubes or freezing agent, a sharp putty knife, an old toothbrush, vinegar, WD-40, and a high-pressure power washer. The first step in how to remove gum from concrete is rubbing ice cubes on the wad of gum to harden it and make it brittle.
You can also use the freezing agent for this purpose so that you do not need more than a few strokes of the putty knife to detach the hardened gum from the concrete surface. Most home improvement stores sell cans of freezing agents that can be used for other cleaning purposes around the home as well. Once you are able to scrape off most of the gum from the surface using a putty knife, you need to spray the remaining gum with WD-40.
The active ingredients present in this lubricant loosen the bonding of the gum on the surface making it easy to remove it completely from concrete. Once you have removed all the gum from the surface, you need to pour vinegar over the spot to dissolve any leftover gum particles and clean the surface using a toothbrush. Simply scrub the spot for a few minutes and rinse with water to get rid of the gum.
You can even use household items such as peanut butter or peanut oil to breakdown the gum residue on the concrete and then wipe it away using an old piece of cloth to get a clean surface. Finally, to be completely sure, you can use a pressure washer or use a high power garden hose to get rid of any leftover gum and to get a sparkling driveway.
While the above-mentioned procedure is an ideal solution for removing gum from concrete using common household items, you can also hire the services of dry ice blasting cleaning specialists to remove wads of gum from concrete.