We know that not everyone who reads this blog is a contractor and that there are many interested home owners out there, who wish to learn more tricks of the trade about sealing their own driveways.
So here are the basics, as to how to maintain your asphalt driveway in the same pristine condition that you have had it, from day one.
Professionals always use an asphalt sealer when they lay a driveway or path.
The advice given is that any asphalt – from the domestic driveway to a parking lot – should be sealed every two years. This is on top of all the other maintenance to the asphalt which may also need doing. Things such as potholes and cracks should also be taken care of as soon as you can do, to prevent any problems further down the line.
WHAT IS ASPHALT?
Asphalt is a mixture of bitumen, sand, rock and tar. It begins as a thick liquid which is flexible enough to move without cracking. But eventually, the top layer will dry and lose its fluid qualities. This is because the sun oxidizes it and it changes from a black color to a gray.
The good news is, if your driveway or path has not been down for long yet, then there still is time for action. We would recommend that you get some quality sealer down on the asphalt NOW before it grays out.
Even if your driveway has begun to gray, it is still worth doing it. This is because it is only going to dry out further and get worse.
So, in fact, either way, you can seal your asphalt.
WHY SHOULD I SEAL?
Basically, once you should seal your asphalt because it is like a protection for the elements. Just think about all the extremes of temperature that will be thrown at your driveway – sun, snow, ice, rain and so on.
This sealer takes all the pressure off the asphalt and prevents it from deteriorating too far.
WHAT PRODUCT DO I USE?
You would probably be most likely to use some kind of coal tar sealer for a driveway or pathway around your home.
This will deliver an adequate level of protection against the elements and weather conditions such as hail, rain and snow. It will even help guard against the damage done by tree roots.
It needs to be well mixed prior to applying on your driveway and as a domestic user, you should be fine to go ahead with a manual tool like a squeegee or brush.
Check out our other blogs for more about seal-coating asphalt for beginners!