A few years ago, I may or may not have stained our back steps while working on a post about making your own firestarters using egg cartons, dryer lint, and melted wax. (Okay, so I definitely did stain the step. But in my defense, I figured it would be relatively easy to pour the melted wax into an egg carton without making a mess. This did not turn out to be the case.) The greasy wax left behind an unsightly stain on the concrete steps, and to put it briefly, my husband was not pleased.
Related: How To Make Your Own Firestarters
Even though I don’t really understand why something like a concrete stain would drive him crazy, I DO understand getting irrationally upset over little things once in a while. ;-) There are a hundred little habits of his that drive me up the wall, and sometimes I get a little more annoyed by them than I should. But that’s just part of being married for as long as we have, and we’ve found that trying to solve the problem usually helps smooth things over. So for my husband’s sake, I resolved to find a way to eliminate that stain for good and restore our clean concrete.
After a lot of digging around online, I finally came across a tip that sounded promising. Someone claimed that Drano (yes, the stuff you use to unclog drains) can help clean concrete. I was willing to give it a try, and let me tell you, it worked so much better than I could have imagined! The greasy, waxy stain virtually disappeared, as did the other small greasy stains I tried it on. Here’s how it works, so you can use this miracle concrete cleaner too!
How To Clean Concrete Stains
*Note: I used Drano Max Gel, but I’m sure other similar cleaners would work well too!
Start by squeezing or pouring drain cleaner onto the stain to cover it. Let the cleaner sit on the stain for a few minutes to help it sink it.
Then take a stiff scrub brush and give the stain a good scrub (be sure to use a nylon brush as a metal brush can damage concrete). Use that elbow grease! :-)
Once the stain has lifted, use paper towels to mop up as much of the cleaner and stain as possible. (You may want to use gloves for this part to make sure you’re not making too much contact with the drain cleaner.) Dispose of the paper towels.
Finally, take your garden hose and rinse the area thoroughly with plenty of water. There won’t be very much cleaner remaining, but you’ll still want to dilute any remaining cleaner as much as possible so it doesn’t hurt the environment.
I think the pictures capture just how effectively this method works! If you have tough concrete stains that you haven’t be able to remove, I definitely recommend giving this method a try. And who knows, it could just save your marriage too! ;-)