How to get tire marks off pavers

Unsightly tire marks are a pain for anyone trying to keep up their home's visual appeal. Sealers can help, but skid marks and tire scuffs remain almost unavoidable. 

Luckily, it can be quite easy to get tire marks off driveways and pavers. Keep reading to learn how easy it is to get rid of tire marks with Cobble Clean.

Why Do Tire Marks Show Up on Pavers?

Car tires have ridges that dig into the road to ensure that cars don't skid. This contact with the ground produces a lot of heat, though, causing a process called plasticizer migration. Tire rubber generally uses a compound called plasticizer to improve its grip, but the heat that tires generate causes this plasticizer to soften and eventually leak out of the tire. 

Depending on the sealer that a paver uses, a plasticizer may discolor it when the hot tires roll across the paver or park on it. Though the residue may be a positive sign that your tires are gripping the road well, it also results in tire marks that you need to get off the driveway later.

How to Remove Tire Marks from Pavers

Getting tire marks off driveways or pavers can be difficult, depending on how old the marks are. Fresher tire marks are easier to remove, though the process of removing them will be simple in any case. You will need to:

1. Clean any Debris from the Paver

First, you need to sweep off all debris like small stones, dust, and leaves, so you don't risk damaging the concrete when you clean it. If you have a deck brush, that's the perfect tool for the job.

2. Pour Degreaser on the Tire Marks

You're now ready to apply your degreaser. Start with a small area first to make sure there aren't any problems. For instance, Cobble Clean is a heavy-duty solution that can be used without dilution to get rid of tough stains or tire marks on the driveway. However, this cleaner may be strong enough to strip some coatings, so it helps to do some trial and error to figure out how much water to mix into your cleaner, diluting it for the best results.

Once you're happy with your mix, you can apply it more generously to the area you need to clean. If you use Cobble Clean, you just need to wait about a minute — maybe five minutes in the case of stubborn stains — for the solution to set in. 

You can always repeat this process, too, so it's okay if you realize you didn't wait long enough and need to apply more.

3. Scrub the Area

After the degreaser has lifted tire marks from the concrete, scrubbing the paver will help to fully remove the rest of the marks. Try to work in a circular motion with a bristle brush to effectively remove the tire marks.

Remember to wear rubber gloves during this step, though, because you may have to scrub for a while to remove particularly stubborn marks.

4. Apply More Degreaser and Repeat If Necessary

In certain conditions, like cold weather, it may not be enough to complete this process once. In that case, you will have to reapply the degreaser and scrub again as many times as necessary until the stains fully fade.

5. Use a Hose or Power Washer to Remove the Chemicals

Once you've removed the skidmarks, remember to remove any degreaser or residue from the area with a power washer or hose. If you use a power washer, though, make sure you direct the wand at a 45-degree angle, facing away from anyone who could get hurt.

Also, bear in mind that the chemicals you use to clean the paver will likely seep into the soil around it. Fortunately, since Cobble Clean is a concentrated eco-friendly blend of different biodegradable solvents and detergents, you can wash it off without worrying about harming the area.

Lastly, please note that oil spots that have more deeply penetrated the concrete may rise to the surface up to 24 hours after cleaning, so keep an eye out in case you need to do any follow-up cleaning.

Cleaning Tips to Remember

As you can see, the process of cleaning your paver is mostly straightforward, but here are some tips to ensure you get the best results:

Avoid Wire Brushes

Though it might be tempting to try to use a stiff, metal wire brush to remove a tougher mark, these brushes can leave noticeable scratches on your paver.

Don't Use Bleach or Other Harsh Chemicals

Since the cleaning solution seeps into the ground once you wash it off, you should make sure to use solutions that won't cause harm to the surrounding soil, groundwater, or storm drains. Cobble Clean is a great option because it's an eco-friendly mixture of different biodegradable solvents, so it's safe for the area around it.

Harsher cleaners also may damage your paver. Bleach can discolor colored concrete or even damage it. Some strong chemicals can also degrade or strip your sealer.

Clean Marks Early

The earlier you remove marks, scuffs, and other discolorations, the easier it will be. If you let them set in, you will have a much harder job later on.

How to Prevent Tire Marks

Since hot tires produce tire marks, one way to avoid them is to maneuver slowly across your paver, avoiding any quick turns to reduce the amount of friction acting on your tires. If you wait near your driveway for a few minutes until the car tires cool down before pulling in, that can also help avoid these marks.

You could also select tires that have lower levels of polymer compounds to reduce the amount of plasticizer migration that will take place. Regularly cleaning your concrete before tire marks have stayed too long can also help your paver stay free of tire marks for much longer periods.

Buy the Best Degreaser for Your Paver

The right degreaser is the key to getting tire marks off your paver. You need one that's strong and safe for the area around it — which is why Cobble Clean is a great option, both for homeowners and for commercial property maintenance. 

Contact SurfaceLogix to learn more about Cobble Clean and why it's a great product that anyone who needs to clean pavers will find useful.

Surface Logix Cleaner to remove tire marks from pavers

Back to blog

Leave a comment