Driveway Maintenance Tips to Keep Asphalt
Sealcoating driveways roughly every two years with a high quality product is essential. This can either be done by the homeowner or by hiring an asphalt and sealcoating contractor. Regular driveway maintenance is also important to keep driveways in good repair and avoid extensive damage, and homeowners can easily take care of this on their own with a few tools and products.
Asphalt Maintenance: Repairing Cracks
The first step to repair a crack is to remove any loose bits of asphalt with a wire brush. Next, sweep or vacuum the debris from the crack. Any dust should be removed with a hose. A driveway cleaning agent may have to be used if the crack has oil stains.
The next step depends on the width of the crack. If it is less than a quarter of an inch, use a crack repair product. Place enough of the product in the crack that it is slightly higher than the driveway surface. This will allow for shrinkage. Cracks that are between a quarter and a half an inch can be filled using a patching compound. Fill the crack using a caulking gun, then push the product into the crack and smooth it with a putty knife. Deeper cracks can be partially filled with sand (up to about ¼ inch from the top of the crack) before the compound is applied.
Driveway Maintenance: Repairing Depressed Areas
After prolonged use, driveways typically develop depressed areas. Areas that are less than one inch deep can be repaired. First, the area must be cleaned. This includes sweeping and spraying with a hose to remove dust and dirt. If the area is severely stained, use a cleaner to remove any oil or other impurities. When there is no standing water remaining in the area, apply a coat of driveway coating to the area. A cold patching material should be applied with a trowel. Fill the area so it is level with the surface. Then, pack the material in more tightly by using a metal tamper. A piece of lumber will also work. Allow the driveway to dry for a full day. It is recommended that the area be sealcoated afterwards.
Regular driveway cleaning is important because it enhances the appearance of your driveway. Large particles, dust, and soil can be removed with a stiff broom, or by spraying the area down with a hose. If there are oil and gasoline stains, they may be able to be removed with a mild detergent. Simply apply the product, wait for several minutes, and remove it by spraying the area with a hose. For tougher stains, use a driveway cleaner and a scrub brush.
When Regular Driveway Maintenance Isn’t Enough
Asphalt maintenance is easier than most people think, but there are some things you just shouldn’t try to do on your own. Very large cracks, potholes, or deep depressions should be handled by someone who specializes in asphalt and sealcoating. If the time when regular asphalt maintenance is no longer sufficient has arrived, or if you’re ready for something completely different, contact an EnhanceScape asphalt and sealcoating contractor.