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  • Writer's pictureChris Martin

What's That stain? Your guide to identifying Paving Stains and Paving Cleaning

Your paving can make your house look beautiful and be a feature of your yard, but it doesn’t take long to start noticing little dark spots appearing. What are they? And how do you get rid of them?

Here’s your guide to identifying paving stains and how to do home paving cleaning.

Before you attempt any paving cleaning, we recommend speaking to a professional paving cleaning company, like DJL Services. There is a lot of risk to attempting paving cleaning yourself including damaging your paving, other areas of your home, or potentially harming yourself with strong chemicals or high-pressure cleaning equipment.

Mould, Algae and Dirt Stains

These are the most common stains that you’ll see on your paving. They’re caused by natural wear and tear, and elements from the environment, like water. You’ll often find mould, moss, mildew and algae stains around areas where water can pool and the paving receives very little sunlight. Common examples are under pot plants, near downpipes and dark corners.

What Mould, Algae and Dirt Stains Look Like

Mould and algae stains on pavers can first appear as white, brown or green spots but the longer they’re left the more they will grow. Dirt stains will usually be dark brown or the colour of the surrounding sand, soil or ground.

paving mould stains
Paving mould stains

How to Remove Mould, Algae and Dirt Stains From Paving

To start your paving cleaning for mould and dirt stains, first, you will need to apply chemicals to kill the mould and algae. Household remedies like a mixture of chlorine bleach and water can be effective. We recommended using protective gear when you're doing this like gloves, mask and goggles.

Depending on the size of the stains, you may be required to scrub the stain affected paving for a few hours to remove the mould and dirt. A fast and effective solution to removing mould, algae and dirt stains from paving is to use a combination of industrial cleaning chemicals and high-pressure cleaning equipment. Although, these chemicals are hazardous and can be damaging to the rest of your property or yourself. Always hire a professional Perth paving cleaning company, like DJL Services, if you have a paving stain that requires high-pressure cleaning.

Rust Stains

Rust stains occur on paving when water runs over metal then deposits the water and iron particles on your paving. Over time the iron particles oxidize and cause a stain. Rust stains can be particularly difficult to remove from paving as often the chemical required to break down the rust stain can also remove any dyes or paints used to style your paving.

What a Rust Stain Looks Like

Rust stains on paving with usually be a reddish-brown colour but somethings can be a dark brown.

paving rust stains
Paving rust stains

How to Remove Rust Stains From Paving

To remove rust stains from paving, you will need to use strong acids to break down the rust and allow it to be washed away. Before you start your paving cleaning, we recommend talking to a professional paving cleaning company, like DJL Services. The strong acids needed to remove rust stains can not only be hazardous to come into contact with but can also irreversibly damage your paving. Depending on the type of paving you have, chemicals may not be an option to remove the stain.

If you wish to try DIY paving cleaning to remove the rust stain, we recommend starting with a weaker acid product like lemon juice or white vinegar and trying it on a small area to see the results. Apply the acid directly to the paving stain and scrub with a soft brush for 5 minutes, then wash away with water. Don’t leave the acid on the paving or allow it to dry as this may cause erosion of your paving.

Oil and Grease Stains

There are a few causes of oil and grease stains on paving, the primary offenders being dripping from cars or spray from BBQs. Whatever the cause, leaving oil and grease stains on your paving can cause permanent staining so the faster you clean the paving the better.

What a Oil Stain Looks Like

Oil and grease stains are usually dark but can often absorb material from around them. Oil stains on paving can be wet and sticky if it hasn’t been there very long.

paving oil stains
Paving oil stains

How to Remove Oil Stains From Paving

Firstly, you’ll need to break down the oil or grease with either dishwashing liquid, baking soda or a chemical degreaser from a hardware store. If you’re cleaning your paving with a degreaser, follow the instructions that come with the product.

If you’re using detergent or baking soda, depending on how fragile your paving is, you can start your paving cleaning with a steel brush or firm sponge. Let the detergent or baking soda sit for at least 10 minutes on the oil stain before pouring hot water over the paving. Then continue to scrub in a circular motion until the stain is gone.

This technique may only work on small oil stains on paving. For larger oil stains, you’ll need to contact a paving cleaning company in Perth to use high-pressure cleaning equipment and industrial chemicals. Professional paving cleaning companies, like DJL Services, will use a combination of high pressure and hot water to react with the paving cleaning chemicals to achieve a result that you couldn’t yourself.

Prevention is the Best Solution

To avoid attempting paving cleaning in the future, consider having your paving professional sealed to protect the paving against stains. DJL Services has a great reputation as a Perth high-pressure cleaning company and we will ensure that all stains and dirt are removed before applying a sealer to your paving. We also work with environmentally friendly cleaning products to ensure your property, pets and family are safe. Contact us today to get a free quote for paving cleaning and sealing.

Paving cleaning and sealing
Paving cleaning and sealing


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