How To Get Red Clay Stains Out Of Your Concrete
Maybe you've just gotten home from a drive up in the mountains, or you've been outside gardening or working on your yard. All you know is that one moment your driveway and sidewalks were spotless, and suddenly the next moment you turn around and- boom. They're here. Those obnoxious rust-red smudges- red clay. You take your garden hose out, which washes out the big chunks but leaves red stains behind. You get out your pressure washer and treat your soiled concrete to an intense pressure washing- but the stains remain. Why won't those stains come out?
The Trouble With Red Clay Stains
The problem with red clay is that it's not just any old dirt. Firstly, it's much denser than normal dirt, and it's easier for its particles to sink into small pores and crevices and bond with the surface. But that's not even the biggest problem.
The real issue stems from what makes red clay red in the first place- iron oxide. Iron oxide is what happens when iron meets water- it's rust. It's the reason why iron faucets and other outdoor metal fixtures turn rough and orange over time (fun fact: it's also why Mars is the "Red Planet"- all that sand is full of rust!).
The trouble with cleaning iron oxide stains is that, unlike many kinds of organic stains, it isn't water-soluble. That's why even pressure washing won't get all of it out. For successful red clay stain removal, you have to use a different approach.
How To Clean Up Red Clay Stains
When approaching red clay stains or other iron oxides/rust stains, you need to come at it with an acidic cleaner first. Oxalic acid or muriatic acid can be used to clean rust stains, but it's important to use concentrations that are neither overly diluted nor too concentrated. Most hardware and home improvement stores sell ready-made rust removal cleaners for this purpose. Apply the rust removal cleaner to the stained surface and let it sit according to the manufacturer's directions. When it has sat for the appropriate amount of time, then go back over the stained areas with a pressure washer. Repeat as needed. You'll soon be able to work those stubborn stains out of your concrete!
Of course, there's another option available to you if you live in the Lenoir area: call Grime Busters, LLC and request our red clay stain removal service. Our pressure washing pros are masters at getting stubborn stains out of concrete, pavement, brick, and other tough surfaces. If red clay stains are giving you a hard time, we're here to show them who's boss. Give us a call at 828-394-9532 today.