Quick & Easy Ways to Remove Tire Marks From Concrete

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If you’re like me, few things annoy you more than ugly black tire marks on your clean concrete garage floor or driveway.

I live in a neighborhood where many people bike around, especially kids. So it doesn’t take long for tire marks to show up.

Don’t worry. Whether it’s a case of hot rubber meeting concrete or skid marks from braking a little too hard, we’ve got you covered.

In this guide, we’ll dive into some practical, tried-and-true methods to banish those black streaks once and for all.

So let’s roll up our sleeves and get your garage floor looking great!

Tire marks on concrete garage floor

#1. Use a Degreaser to Remove Tire Marks

What you’ll need:
Oil Eater Concrete Degreaser
Scrub brush with stiff bristles
Straw brush for small areas

Degreasers are great for removing oil and gasoline stains, but did you know they also work great on removing tire marks, too?

Think of degreasers as the superheroes of cleaning products. They swoop in to break down that rubber residue and lift it off your concrete.

They do this by breaking down the chemical bonds between the rubber molecules and the concrete surface. This makes it super-easy to scrub and rinse off the marks. 

As a bonus, degreasers will also remove oil, grease, and dirt that may be mixed with the rubber residue, leaving the concrete surface clean and shiny. 

There are a bunch of good concrete degreasers out there. But, for my money, I really like Oil Eater Cleaner & Degreaser.

I recently tested several popular concrete cleaners and found it was easily the best at cleaning stubborn stains off my floor.

SunSpot and Natural Orange are also pretty good, but we’ll stick with Oil Eater for this guide.

Top Pick
Oil Eater Cleaner/Degreaser (1 Gallon)

Oil Eater CleanerDegreaser removed a two--year old stain on my concrete garage floor that nothing else could. I highly recommend this, even for stubborn stains.

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Ready to roll up your sleeves and get started? Here’s how to do it:

  1. Safety first: Degreasers are tough on stains and can also be tough on your skin. So, put on a pair of rubber gloves before you start.
  2. Pre-soak: Give the area a good wetting with warm water. It’s like prepping the battlefield for the degreaser to do its thing.
  3. Let ‘er rip: Slather the Oil Eater Cleaner & Degreaser on those tire marks.
  4. Patience is a virtue: Give the degreaser some time to work. Just don’t let it dry out because that’s when it loses its effectiveness.
  5. Elbow grease: Now comes the part where you work up a sweat. Grab a stiff-bristle brush and give the area a good scrub. For smaller areas, use a stiff straw brush.
  6. Rinse and repeat: Rinse it all off with clean water. And make sure you do a thorough job so you don’t end up with a mini toxic waste site in your yard.

Just remember, like everything in life, using a degreaser has its ups and downs. 

It’s easy, relatively cheap, and does a pretty good job. But sometimes, those really old or deep marks might need a couple of rounds. 

Be careful when you rinse off your garage floor. Any leftover degreaser can be bad news for your plants and soil.

#2. Household Cleaners

What you’ll need:
– Baking Soda
Cleaning vinegar
– Warm water

Did you know you might already have some tire mark-busting tools in your kitchen cupboard? 

I’m talking about regular household items like baking soda, cornmeal, soda, vinegar, and the like.

Here’s how you can use everyday household items to remove tire marks:

  • Baking soda: Mix it with water to form a paste, smear it on the tire marks, and let it sit for a while. Scrub it off with a stiff brush and then rinse well.
  • Cornmeal: Sprinkle some over the marks and let it sit for a few hours. It absorbs the rubber residue, which you can then sweep away.
  • Soda or vinegar: You can use Coke\Pepsi or household vinegar to clean your concrete floors. Pour some over the marks and scrub with a brush. Rinse thoroughly afterward.

Just remember safety first. Always wear gloves, and avoid getting these substances in your eyes.

Using household items has its perks. 

They’re cheap, you’ve probably got them on hand, and they’re eco-friendly, but they’ve got their downsides too. 

They may not be super-effective on stubborn or old marks and typically require more elbow grease. Plus, if you don’t rinse them well, they could leave stains or residues on your concrete.

But hey, it’s always worth a shot, right? 

You might just find your secret weapon for tire mark removal right in your pantry!

#3. Use a Pressure Washer to Remove Tire Marks

What you’ll need:
Pressure washer
Oil Eater Concrete Degreaser

Alright, let’s switch gears. 

If degreasers are the cleaning superheroes, pressure washers are the heavy artillery. They use high-pressure water to blast away tire marks and just about anything else standing in their way.

Note: You’ll sometimes hear the terms ‘pressure washer‘ and ‘power washer‘ used interchangeably, but they’re actually different tools. A power washer has the ability to heat the water, while a pressure washer does not.

There are several pressure washers that can make short work of your garage floor. We really like the Sun Joe SPX3000 and the Simpson Cleaning MSH3125 MegaShot. They’ve both got plenty of oomph to get the job done.

Sun Joe SPX3000 Electric Pressure Washer
  • 5 Spray tips: 0°, 15°, 15°, 40°, + soap
  • 14.5-Amp/1800-Wwtt motor generates up to 2030 psi & 1.76 gpm of water flow
  • Two 0.9 L onboard removable tanks carry and store different types of detergent to simultaneously tackle different cleaning projects

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This site contains product affiliate links. We may receive a commission if you purchase after clicking on one of these links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

That said, using a pressure washer has its pros and cons, too. 

On the upside, they’re fast, powerful, and don’t mess around when it comes to cleaning. 

But on the flip side, they can be noisy and pricey to buy or rent. And if you’re not careful, you can end up damaging the concrete or causing water runoff and erosion issues.

But if you’ve got some seriously stubborn marks and a little patience, a pressure washer can be just the ticket to a tire-mark-free driveway or garage floor.

How to Choose the Best Degreaser or Pressure Washer for Your Concrete Type and Condition

Not all concrete is created equal. You’ve got colored, stamped, sealed, polished concrete, and each has its own personality. 

Old or damaged concrete has its own quirks, too. Cracks and pores can trap dirt and stains, so you have to consider this when choosing your cleaning gear.

Keep an eye on the products’ pH level, strength, safety, and compatibility. Always test any cleaning products on a small area first. You don’t want any nasty surprises, right? 

As I mentioned, Oil Eater Cleaner & Degreaser is a champ at tackling oil stains on unsealed concrete. If you’ve got mold or mildew on colored or stamped concrete, Simple Green Oxy Solve Total Pressure Washer Cleaner might be your new best friend. 

For general cleaning on sealed or polished concrete, the Sun Joe SPX3000 could be just the ticket.

SunJoe pressure washer

How to Dispose of the Used Degreaser or Pressure Washer Water Safely and Responsibly

Disposing of used degreaser or pressure washer water is a big deal. Here in Florida, we’re very conscious about what chemicals can seep into our water table. Not only does this help prevent pollution, but it avoids any health hazards and legal issues.

Your local municipality will likely have regulations and guidelines for what chemicals you can use and how to dispose of them. Always avoid draining into storm sewers or waterways, and consider using a catch basin or a filter. If you can, collect and recycle the water – it’s a win-win.

Oil Eater Cleaner & Degreaser is biodegradable and non-toxic, so it’s a green option. The Sun Joe SPX-PWB1 Power Scrubbing Broom has a built-in squeegee that reduces water runoff. 

How to Prevent Tire Marks on Concrete Driveways

Let’s face it, prevention is way better than cure, right? 

So, before you even have to deal with tire marks, how about we stop them from happening in the first place?

Typicaly, tire marks happen when hot tires leach plasticizers onto your concrete floor. 

The heat makes the tires softer. When they cool down, they can leave some of their rubber behind. 

Skidding or spinning wheels can also leave marks. Parking in the same spot for long periods can cause these marks to build up.

Here’s what you can do to prevent these pesky tire marks:

  • Easy does it: Avoid spinning your wheels or braking too hard. This can help prevent the car tires from leaving rubber on the floor.
  • Park on mats or pads: These can protect your floor from the rubber residue from your tires.
  • Seal or coat your concrete: High-solids epoxy or polyurethane sealers can provide a barrier between your concrete and your tires.

Speaking of products, here are some that can help you prevent tire marks:

  • High-solids epoxy or polyurethane sealers: These can help protect your concrete from tire marks.
  • Parking mats: These can act as a barrier between your tires and the concrete.
  • Interlocking floor tiles: These can provide a durable and mark-resistant surface for your garage.
  • Tire ramps: Ramps can not only prevent tire marks but help eliminate flat-spotting as well. I’ve created a list of the best driveway ramps for cars here.

So, don’t just clean those marks. Prevent them! 

Your garage floor will thank you.

Zone-Tech Tire Saver Ramps
  • Made from High-density polyethylene plastic in bright yellow for high-visibility
  • Can be mounted to a surface permanently to prevent sliding
  • Interlocking to create extra-wide ramps
  • Easy to store. Hang it up when not in use
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This site contains product affiliate links. We may receive a commission if you purchase after clicking on one of these links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

When to Have Professionals Clean Tire Marks From Concrete Floors and Driveways

Even with all the elbow grease in the world, some tire marks are too stubborn to remove yourself. 

If your garage floor is sealed or coated, you might struggle to remove these marks without damaging the finish.

So, when should you throw in the towel and call in the pros?

  • If you’ve tried everything: You’ve gone through all the DIY methods – concrete degreaser, pressure washer, floor scrubber, household items – and those tire marks are still laughing at you. It might be time to bring in someone with experience and professional-grade products to tackle them.
  • If you don’t have the right tools or products: Let’s face it, not everyone has a pressure washer or floor buffing machine lying around, and you might not want to deal with harsh chemicals. A professional cleaner will have all the right tools and products to do the job.
  • If you value your time: You’ve got better things to do than scrub your garage floor all day. A professional cleaner can get those tire marks off quickly and efficiently, leaving you free to do whatever you enjoy.
  • If you want to avoid damaging your floor or the environment: Professionals are trained to handle cleaning tasks safely and responsibly. They can clean your floor without causing damage and dispose of waste in an environmentally friendly way.

Remember, it’s not admitting defeat to call in a professional. It’s about knowing when your time and effort are better spent elsewhere. And hey, your garage floor will look amazing!

The cost to clean your garage floor professionally may vary depending on several factors:

  • Size and condition of your garage floor
  • Type and extent of the tire marks
  • Location and availability of the service provider
  • Quality and equipment of the cleaning service

Based on some online sources, you can expect to pay anywhere from $0.57 to $0.70 per square foot or $88 to $124 per garage for a basic garage floor cleaning service. 

However, if you have a coated or sealed floor, you may need a more specialized and expensive service to avoid damaging your floor. 

The best way to find out the exact cost to clean your garage floor professionally is to get a free estimate from a reputable and licensed company near you.

Wrapping it Up

We’ve covered a lot of ground today, and I hope this guide has shed some light on how to remove those stubborn tire marks in your garage. Whether you’re going full throttle with a degreaser or pressure washer, sticking to humble household items, or deciding to call in the pros, remember that every garage is unique.

Consider the type of concrete you have, the condition of your floor, and what works best for your budget and lifestyle. And don’t forget about preventative measures! A little care can go a long way in keeping those tire marks at bay in the first place.

Ultimately, we all want the same thing – a clean, organized garage that we’re proud to show off. It might take a little work, but with the right tools, products, and techniques, you’ll have a clean garage floor in no time. 

What is the best garage floor coating? Click the link to see our rankings!

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Tim Wells

Tim Wells, the founder of Garage Transformed, has been featured in dozens of home renovation publications, including BobVila.com, Home Stratosphere, House Digest, Livingetc, and SFGate. Since 2018, he has helped over two million people transform their everyday garages into something they can be proud of. He lives in Central Florida with his wife and bulldog.

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