How to Remove Oil Stains from Synthetic Flooring


Sarah asked: How do I clean oil that has fallen onto a patio floor while BBQing? We have tried most household cleaners on the stains already. The floor seems like a textured linoleum. It is not a coating because at the edges of the patio you can see where is has been wrapped over the edge and nailed in place. We did not put the floor in so I can not tell you exacly what it is, but it is definitely a synthetic material.

Synthetic flooring is often made from vinyl. Even linoleum is made from vinyl these days. Stubborn oil stains like these need to be stripped from the floor, a step beyond cleaning. Follow these guidelines to loosen the oil and remove the sticky residue for good.

You Will Need:

  • Spoon or dull knife
  • Heavy duty cleaner and stripper designed for vinyl flooring
  • Soft bristle brush
  • Soft nylon scrub pad
  • Water
  • Mild detergent
  • Mop

Steps to Remove the Oil:

*Always test a small hidden area first to ensure the cleaning product does not remove any color or texture from the surface.

  1. Begin by using the spoon or dull knife to scrape away as much of the oil residue as possible.
  2. Next, apply the heavy duty cleaner and stripper following the manufacturer’s instructions.
  3. Scrub the area with either a soft bristle brush or nylon scrub pad until all of the oil is removed.
  4. It may take a couple of applications, depending on how much oil is on the surface.
  5. When all of the oil is removed, mop the area with water and a mild detergent.
  6. Dry completely before using again.

Additional Tips and Ideas

  • Avoid using abrasive cleaners because they can damage the surface of the flooring.
  • Heavy duty cleaners and strippers are available at most home improvement stores such as Lowes or Home Depot.


  1. I have lanolium flooring that has oil marks. I have tried to clean with all household products. Could you please advise me on what to do? Thank you. Vilma

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