Why It’s Important To Remove Oil From Your Parking Lot

Learn why it’s important to remove oil from your parking lot.

Learn why it’s important to remove oil from your parking lot.

Your parking lot is an extremely important part of your business, as it gives customers an easy place to park so that they can access your business without needing to find or pay for street parking. It makes sense that, like any other investment in your business, you have to spend time and money maintaining the parking lot. When you have a lot paved, it starts to break down almost immediately, though the process is usually slow, giving you many years of use. Some factors can exacerbate the breakdown, however, and oil spots are one of the worst. 

The Issue With Oil

Oil stains on your asphalt parking lot do more than just make it look dirty. When the oils sits, it can actually start to break down the surface of the parking lot. If you leave the stains to sit too long, they will do much more damage to your parking lot, and you will spend more money repairing it than you would have spent cleaning it up in the first place.

New Stains

When stains are fresh, they are much easier to deal with. This is because the oil hasn’t had time to really penetrate the parking lot surface and cause damage yet. You may actually be able to get it up by scrubbing it with a brush and detergent and rinsing it thoroughly with lots of water. If scrubbing doesn’t work, or if the stain is older, you can also try to warm the oil first. This can be dangerous and should only be attempted with caution. Sometimes if you heat the stain with a propane torch, it will soften enough that you can then scrub it up with detergent. 

Damaging Stains

Once the oil penetrates, it starts doing damage. Early in the process, it will likely only damage the upper layer of the asphalt surface. This can cause slight pavement exposure, loss of aggregate (called raveling), and possibly depressions or potholes. To repair this damage, you will need a professional to patch or resurface the damaged area, depending on the extent of the damage. When the damage is allowed to go unchecked, it can lead to much more expensive repairs, such as saw cutting the damaged sections and doing full depth repaving.


Sealcoating your asphalt parking lot is the best way to protect it from further damage. Seal coat won’t adhere to oil-stained lots, so you will have to correct and repair any stains first. Once you sealcoat the lot, you will be better protected against not only oil stains, but also UV damage and the harshness of winter weather and salt.

Maintenance You Can Trust from PTG Enterprises

If you want to protect your pavement and ensure it has a long lifespan, choose PTG Enterprises for your community sidewalks, parking lots and pavement maintenance needs. We offer commercial concrete, asphalt, masonry, paving, consultation, and survey report services throughout Baltimore, Harford, Anne Arundel, Howard, and P.G. Counties. If you are interested in hearing how we can help you, contact us online or give us a call at (410) 636-8777. For more tips and tricks, be sure to follow us on FacebookTwitterYouTubeLinkedIn, and Flickr.

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