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Don't Burn Out Oil

Don't Burn Out Oil

Posted by H., A. on Sep 19th 2016

I get this email, a video on removing oil stains making promises. I watch it. I cannot hide my horror. I can’t believe what he’s doing. Is he trying to burn oil out of the concrete? I watch the flame hover over the driveway, watch the smoke rising like a burnt piece of toast. I get this sick feeling, deep in my gut. You can’t do that to concrete. You can’t do that and something not go terribly wrong. I do a quick Google and confirm. Oil burns hotter than concrete can sustain. Into the camera he smiles, an enthusiastic grin of friend who wants to show you something. I cannot stop myself from imagining the concrete in future. Not now and not maybe in a month but it will start,slowly flaking, first in little spots then in pieces then in glacial sheets of concrete. I imagine the homeowner wanting to cry, wanting it to stop, not able to stop it. I understand it though: the desperate calls we receive from owners, scrambling to remove an oil stain, releasing them from the tyranny of a Homeowner's Association. Its an oil stain from a friend’s or a family’s car or truck. This is a hard problem without many good solutions. Most try washing and washing and rewashing but the oil just reappears. This familiarity with failure may sustain the illusion of impossibility but Gray-Out dissolves stains without the necessity of extremes.

Concrete is stone sponge, hard yet porous, and oil seeps into concrete, deep into concrete. It's better if we think of oil spills in multiple dimensions, not flatly in width and length but also in depth. The obvious approach of using a standard cleaner only removes the surface of the oil stain which rise up to surface, regenerating the stain. And burning the oil out may work, removing the deeper layers, but it is quite similar to lighting a stack of papers in an office on fire. You’ll remove the stack but also the desk, the chair, and possibly the office. Concrete subjected to that intensity of heat simply breaks down, maybe not immediately but it will.

Gray-Out is a gray powder of small active molecules known as enzymes. These enzymes break oil apart into non-reactive and non-toxic gases. Gray-Out sits on top of the stain, eliminating the oil as it rises from within the deepth of the concrete. This chemical process is safe for your pets, your plants, and your concrete. Gray-Out is part of SealGreen’s triune commitment in delivering high-quality, environment safe, and easy-to-apply products to homeowners. Applying Gray-Out begins by clearing the concrete surface of debris or other obstructions preventing the product from contacting the oil. Debris could be gum or leaves and are easily removable with a brush or a leaf blower. Then pour a thin of Gray-Out onto the dry concrete with the oil stain. We recommend using a brush to spread the powder across the entire section of concrete for a uniform look. This covering of gray powder will satisfy Homeowner’s Associations while the product works to dissolve the oil. The Gray-Out can require a long period of time before the stain is completely removed. This can be a few days for small stains to several months for very large stains. When Gray-Out has eliminated the oil, it will release gradually without creating problems such as stiking to shoes or tires. You can find the entire Gray-Out application process demonstrated on our Youtube channel SealGreenTV. If you would like to know more about Gray-Out, visit us at