Important Maintenance Steps for Asphalt Driveways
Keeping the best asphalt driveways in Delhi, LA durable and long-lasting requires that you take a large number of maintenance steps. These simple steps are designed to add years of life to your driveway and handle any problems that may develop. And if you need more professional help, you can call us at Ark-La-Tex Paving to learn more about the different methods that we use.
Step One – Sealcoat Your Driveway
Homeowners who own asphalt driveways need to make sure to add a sealcoat, or else they may run into some complications. What exactly is a sealcoat? It is a protective layer of sealant added to your asphalt that is designed to keep away various types of weathering elements. For example, it will protect against rain and snow and also UV rays that can harm your asphalt and wear it down over the years.
Thankfully, a sealcoat is not a complex sealant nor a difficult one to add to the surface of a driveway. Many homeowners may be able to add a sealcoat themselves, without much difficulty, though it is true that some may lack the general skills to handle this demand. Sealcoating is a bit like adding a stain to any surface and must be done evenly and smoothly to avoid mistakes or “bunching” on the pavement.
How often should you sealcoat a driveway? Here’s the best thing about this process – only once every 3-5 years. Your coat should last at least that long before it needs to be replaced for good. And don’t think that adding an extra layer before this time has passed will help – unfortunately, it is only likely to wear down the sealcoat and cause damage to it that will decrease the quality of your asphalt.
Step Two – Clean Your Asphalt Properly
Dirt, mold, rain, and other contaminants can easily cause stains on the surface of asphalt driveways that can be very ugly and problematic. That’s because stains not only affect the look of a driveway but can also cause a lot of damage to occur. For example, dirt can work its way into various cracks of your asphalt and help to support the growth of multiple plants and trees that may be beneath the slab.
When this happens, the persistent growth of this vegetation can cause damage to your slabs that requires a complete replacement of segments or the whole driveway. Therefore, it is a good idea to take this problem seriously by regularly cleaning the surface of your driveway. Sweeping away debris, dust, and dirt can help a lot and can be done at least once a week to produce a pretty consistent effect.
That said, you may also need to remove any grass or weeds that you see growing around the edges of or even inside of the asphalt. These small plants may not seem like that big of a deal at first, but they can spread a surprising amount of damage. You may not think that they could push through your asphalt, but they can be surprisingly powerful in this way, so get rid of them.
Step Three – Patching Small Damage
Asphalt driveways aren’t prone to a lot of severe damage because they are designed to last for decades. That said, some issues can pop up from time to time on your driveway, problems that can be unexpected and hard to handle. For example, a crack on the surface or a flaking away at the edges of the slab may leave it exposed to some types of persistent damage that can wear away its surface.
Thankfully, homeowners shouldn’t have a tough time patching the surface with a bit of asphalt patching. These small patches are bits of asphalt you place on the crack and allow for spreading and fully absorbing into the break. When you perform this step, you make it easier for your driveway to settle and prevent more persistent damage from affecting the deeper surface of the slab in problematic ways.
If you don’t feel comfortable performing this type of repair, most paving experts shouldn’t have a hard time doing it for you. Though you may save a little money initially doing it yourself, there’s a good chance that you might spend more than you should if your repair doesn’t hold. And don’t forget that restorations such as these are usually a temporary fix and that more expert ones may be necessary.
Step Four – Preventing Water Damage
Asphalt driveways are very resistant to many types of damage but are not invincible – no driveway is entirely safe from weathering erosion. For example, you should not let water pool on the surface of your asphalt for too long. If you do, you are running a risk of severe damage that may be much more serious and widespread than you might expect a few mud puddles to be for your asphalt.
For example, excessive water on your asphalt can wear away at the surface of your pavement and allow some water to pass through the surface of your driveway. When this happens, the base and sub-grade of your driveway will be compromised and lead to severe potholes. These holes can expand exponentially and cause many types of damage that can be hard to manage without professional repairs.
What about when snow falls on your asphalt? Should you remove it as soon as possible? Yes, but you can take heart, knowing that the black of asphalt will absorb more heat than other types of driveways, allowing snow and ice to melt much faster than on other classes. That doesn’t mean that you should let this wetness stay, though, but should wipe it up as soon as possible.
Get Expert Help, When Needed
These simple maintenance steps shouldn’t be too challenging for most homeowners to handle. However, there may come a time when you need help with your asphalt driveways in Delhi, LA. If you do, please contact us at Ark-La-Tex Paving right away to learn more. Our experts have years of experience and will do what is necessary to keep your driveway reliable and secure.