How To Fix Paint Spills Or Graffiti On Your Asphalt Drive

It only takes a small amount of paint to mar the surface of your asphalt driveway. Almost every color seems to stand out against the black surface of the material. You have three options if you spill paint or if your drive is targeted by graffiti. The following guide will help you pick the best method for removal.


This is the quickest method that is also one of the lowest cost options for removal. It also takes the least amount of effort and is simple to perform yourself. Black asphalt paint comes in both spray and liquid form. Generally, for small spills, spray is quick and easy. For larger areas or areas that may need more coverage, then liquid is best. If you choose liquid, you will also need a paint roller with a long handle to apply it, or at the very least a wide paint brush.

The problem with paint is that it is often darker than the driveway, especially if you have an older drive that has faded to dark gray. This means the cover-up patch will show unless you paint the whole driveway.

Chemical stripper

If the paint spilled is an epoxy or an enamel, then a chemical solvent may be the best option. This is because these develop a smooth surface that cover-up paint will sometimes peel off of, revealing the paint spill beneath. Chemical strippers are comparable in price to painting, but they may require more effort. The main drawback is that you will need to take steps to protect yourself, including eye protection and gloves, while also ensuring the chemicals don't run off into the grass or stormwater system.

Exact application methods vary depending on the paint stripper, but generally you will mix and apply them to the paint and allow them to sit for a prescribed amount of time. You will then need to rinse away the excess or soak it up with a rag, and then scrub the asphalt with a stiff brush to remove the loosened paint.

Pressure washing or sandblasting

If you don't want a visible paint patch and chemicals seem too dangerous, there is another option. Keep in mind it is usually more expensive, since you may need to hire someone to perform it. Paint can often be removed with a jet of high pressure water. If that fails, hitting the asphalt with sand at pressure may scrub it off.

It's best to only use these methods on asphalt in very good condition, since the pressure of the water or sand can damage old, cracked or crumbling asphalt.


This final option costs more than DIY methods, but the results look as though you got a brand new driveway. An asphalt company will fill in any cracks or holes in the drive, and then they apply a thin coat of fresh asphalt over the entire surface.

Resurfacing is an excellent option if your driveway was already developing pitting, holes or cracks, or if it looked faded and worn. This way, you get a new looking drive and the paint problem is covered. Talk to an asphalt company, such as Salem Paving, for more information.