No one likes seeing rust stains on their concrete driveway or sidewalk, and in fact it might even be a mystery to most people how these stains came to be there in the first place. Rust stains can easily form on a multitude of surfaces, your concrete included. Luckily, just as easily as they form, they can be removed if the proper tools and methods are utilized.
What Causes Rust Stains on Concrete?
Many people have noticed oxidation stains on their sidewalks or driveways, usually from iron-rich well water used for irrigation or after having fertilized their lawns or gardens. There is a direct correlation between the fertilizer and the unsightly spots which you may have noticed on your cement surfaces. Many types of fertilizer actually contain metals, as well as various kinds of minerals, such as copper, zinc, magnesium, and iron. It’s very easy for any of the fertilizer granules to miss the lawn or garden that you are targeting, and land instead of on concrete surfaces.
Then, when water from your sprinkler douses those granules, the iron which is included in the fertilizer seeps out and causes your cement to become stained. What has happened is that the minerals from your fertilizer have penetrated the cement and brought about a permanent color change. Once this happens, it can be extremely difficult to undo, because the minerals within your fertilizer are not water-soluble, which means they cannot be removed simply with a brush and soapy water.
However, that doesn’t mean that those spots are necessarily permanent. One thing you can try is a clear white vinegar with equal parts water, so you can see if that will remove the stain. Most likely you’ll have to apply this mixture several times before you see any results, and you’ll undoubtedly have to scrub fairly vigorously, but you might begin to see some positive impact pretty soon.
If it turns out that the vinegar mixture doesn’t work well enough, you can try muriatic acid, using a ratio of one part acid to 40 parts water. You should always be cautious whenever handling muriatic acid, because it can burn your skin as well as your lungs if you inhale it. For that reason, you should always have safety equipment like gloves and a breathing mask on. It’s also possible that muriatic acid will leave an impression in your concrete because after all, it is an extremely powerful cleaning agent.
When professionals have a need to safely remove oxidation from surfaces such as boats, construction sites, buildings, sails, vinyl sidings on houses, and a whole host of other materials, they use a product called Magica Rust Remover. This modern-day miracle cleaner has the capability of delivering a powerful punch to any rusted surface and completely dissolving away the oxidation itself, without harming even the most delicate of surfaces.
The reason it is capable of doing this is that it contains no harsh abrasives or acids in its makeup, but it does have components that work together to loosen and dissolve any rusty stains which have formed. Regardless of how little or how much rust has formed on a surface that you need cleaned, you can count on Magica to banish the stain and restore a sparkling clean look to the surface you’re cleaning.
The proprietary formula which was developed for Magica Rust Remover is capable of safely and quickly breaking down any kind of rusty stain on any kind of surface. After it has broken down the rust formation, all that nasty material can be easily rinsed away with plain water, and afterward, there won’t be a trace of any of that discoloration that used to be there.
It is used by a great number of industries to carry out business-critical processes for rust-stain removal, and it is extremely effective in doing so. If all these industries can rely on the product to maintain and clean off their affected surfaces, it will certainly be more than adequate for any task you might have around the house involving oxidation stain removal.
Will Pressure Washing Work?
Probably for most people, their first instinct when confronted with rusty spots on cement is to try to hose it off, or to use a power washing approach which will supply greater force to remove the stains. However, there is virtually no chance that a pressure washer will remove any discoloration from your concrete.
As mentioned previously, minerals that have seeped into your cement are not water-soluble, and that means they cannot be removed with a simple solution of water, even if it’s warm soapy water. You can use your pressure washer to clear off your sidewalk or driveway after you have applied Magica Rust Remover, and that will leave the cement surface looking sparkling clean.
Now that you know power washing won’t have much effect on removing rusty spots from your concrete, what options does that really leave you with? While this is a very common problem for many homeowners, it’s usually pretty difficult to prevent, because you have to be aware of everything that happens to fall on top of your cement surfaces.
Anything which contains iron is bound to come into contact with water and oxygen eventually, and that will trigger the formation of rust and discoloration. Eventually, this will degrade your sidewalk or driveway, and all the while it will also cause an unsightly looking color that will diminish from the aesthetics of your cement.
First you should thoroughly wash your concrete surface, so as to remove all dirt and debris because all this can interfere with your actual cleaning efforts which will come next. Once you’ve cleaned off the surface and allowed it some time to dry out, you can pour or squirt lemon juice onto those areas which have been affected by oxidation stains.
The citric acid inside lemon juice makes it a great cleaning agent, and after you let it sit there for about 10 minutes, it will have penetrated the rust-stain enough that you should be able to scrub it away using a wire brush. If lemon juice doesn’t do the trick, try using white vinegar, because it has a slightly stronger acidic content.
Use a brush, working in small circles so that you can remove any oxidation spots wherever they appear, but be careful not to use a brush with metal bristles, as this can remove the top layer of the cement. Then you can rinse away the vinegar or lemon juice with warm soapy water, so as to remove all the cleaning material. Allow this to dry, and your cement should be very close to its original condition.
When you notice rusty stains that have formed on your cement driveway or sidewalk, you should definitely try to remove them as soon as possible. The longer the stains have to work on your concrete surfaces, the more embedded they will become, and the more damage they will do. Your best bet for removing oxidation spots completely is to use Magica Rust Remover, which is what the professionals use in a number of industries where rust removal is critical. Contact the manufacturer with your order at this website, and if you’d like to get started with a home remedy, you can use some of the suggestions described above in the meantime.