It's a good idea to sealcoat your driveway every so often, but if you're new to driveway ownership, you may not be aware of what sealcoating is or how you can tell when it's time to get your driveway sealcoated. This FAQ is designed for homeowners who would like to take good care of their asphalt driveway and would like to know more information about sealcoating.
How can you tell when it's time to sealcoat your asphalt driveway?
When an asphalt driveway is first installed, it will be a dark black color, and water on the driveway will bead up instead of soaking into the pores of the driveway. Over time, that black coating will turn a much lighter gray color, and it will start to absorb water when wet. When this happens, that's when it's time to sealcoat your driveway. Your driveway may take many years to reach this point, depending on the condition of your pavement, your climate and other factors. During this time, your driveway may become cracked or pitted. When this happens, this is another sign that your driveway needs to be sealcoated--however, it will need to be repaired before it can be sealcoated.
What's the purpose of sealcoating?
Sealcoating prevents water from being absorbed into the asphalt. Water damages asphalt by destabilizing the base beneath the asphalt. Water penetration can also damage your driveway during freeze/thaw cycles, when the water expands in the asphalt and breaks it apart.
Can you sealcoat your driveway personally, or do you have to pay for it to be done?
Professional sealcoating is always adviseable, especially if your driveway is damaged. Allowing asphalt sealcoating professionals to make proper repairs to your driveway helps to ensure that the repairs last for as long as possible. Your pavement contractors can also tell you whether or not your driveway needs to be resurfaced.
However, you can perform sealcoating on your own, if necessary. To do this, purchase asphalt sealcoating from your local hardware store or home improvement center. Sweep your driveway, then wash it down with a hose. Allow the asphalt time to dry. Wearing old clothing, pour some of the sealcoating onto the driveway in one of the corners. Use a long-handled squeegee to spread the sealcoating around, and pour more sealcoating on as necessary. Do this until the driveway is completely coated. Follow all manufacturer's instructions, because different products may have slightly different instructions.
For more information, contact Pavement Solutions Inc paving or a similar company.
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