Paving My Driveway Again

How To Maintain An Asphalt Paved Surface

by Minnie Larson

Asphalt is the most common paving material used for both residential and commercial purposes, largely due to its easy installation, affordable cost, and relatively easy method of repair. This makes it ideal for use in both parking lots and driveways. However, due to the nature of paved surfaces, which see a great deal of weather exposure and wear and tear through normal operation, there are several steps that you should take to ensure that your asphalt surface stays in good condition.

Drainage

Water that is allowed to sit stagnant on your asphalt surface can quickly wear away at the coating and pavement, making it much more likely that cracks and potholes will develop. Further, water that is absorbed into your asphalt that then freezes in the winter can quickly force a crack to develop and contribute to the deterioration of your paved surface. The slope of your driveway or parking lot, and the inclusion of drains and other drainage methods, can help prevent this from happening. If you notice water pooling on your asphalt, you should contact a professional about regrading the surface or otherwise installing some sort of drainage system to help protect your asphalt.

Cleaning

Though it may seem more like a superficial concern, regular cleaning of your asphalt surface is an important part of keeping the paved area in good condition. Washing the surface of your driveway or parking lot down is a good way to remove chemicals which can leak from the underside of vehicles, which can cause staining and structural damage to the asphalt. Further, removing dirt, leaves, and other pieces of physical debris can help expose cracks and damage as they initially form, allowing you to identify necessary repairs early when they're easier to complete.

Patching and Filling

When you notice small spiderweb cracks or minor forms of damage in your asphalt, you should have them patched or filled immediately. Leaving the problem allows water to enter the asphalt, which can later cause the cracks to expand, or can further deteriorate to the point where your asphalt within a certain section completely crumbles apart. Residential patching and crack filling kits are available at most hardware stores, and can be applied using a trowel or shovel, depending on the size of the crack in question. For larger areas of damage, and for commercial properties, it's probably in your best interest to contact a professional residential paving contractor to ensure that the job is done quickly and effectively.

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