Keeping your asphalt paved driveway in good condition boosts your home’s curb appeal, in addition to increasing its value. Asphalt driveways are normally attractive, but only if well maintained. Thus, regular maintenance is vital if you want your driveway to remain in good shape.
One thing with asphalt driveways is that they are durable—but to some point. Regular use, extreme weather conditions, and normal wear and tear can take a toll on asphalt—thus warranting immediate repairs. Therefore, maintaining your asphalt driveway regularly can allow you to enjoy using it for longer years. Also, it helps in eliminating the unnecessary expenses of repaving the driveway.
The following are the top 7 maintenance tips for your asphalt driveway. These tips will allow you to extend its lifespan, as well as its beauty.
Sealcoat your driveway regularly
Sealcoating your asphalt driveway assists in prolonging its lifespan. This process involves applying a special protective layer, which reduces the effects of extreme weather elements on the driveway. The first layer of the protective sealant should be applied immediately after paving the driveway.
Furthermore, you should schedule periodical seal coating as part of your regular maintenance to protect your driveway. According to contractors from ABC Paving & Sealcoating, you should recoat your asphalt driveway at least once every three years. However, this also depends on the condition.
Sealcoating your driveway helps reduce the effects of the ever-changing temperatures by strengthening the driveway and preventing the asphalt from disintegrating.
Repair your driveway the moment you see signs of damage
Always fix any damages on your driveway immediately—this can be indentation or cracks. Dealing with this issue early in advance assists in reducing your repair costs. If you live in an area with an extremely cold climate, your asphalt paved driveway is prone to more damage.
If your driveway is cracked, water can easily find its way into its base layer. Now, the frequent freezing and melting cycle can make the cracks larger. Therefore, sealing the cracks the moment they appear prevents water from seeping in, thus reducing the chances of your driveway getting damaged.
Protect your driveway from water
Water is a big threat to asphalt paved surfaces. Any stagnant or pooling water on your driveway is very dangerous. If water penetrates the driveway, it causes wear and tear. Moreover, it can lead to significant damage if it has certain chemicals like antifreeze and oil that pose a serious threat to asphalt paved surfaces.
Therefore, if you want your asphalt paved driveway to stand the test of time, keep water away from it. Your driveway should serve you as long as possible. This, however, can only happen when you regularly maintain it and prevent water from gathering. When you do this, it will remain tough, and last for a longer period of time.
Protect the edges
The edges of a driveway, especially a new one, are very sensitive. These edges can fail with time if you don’t take care of them. To prevent this from happening to your new driveway, ensure that you backfill the edges with topsoil.
When you do this, you will be able to prevent the edges from cracking or breaking. Moreover, this helps in maintaining the beauty as well as extending the lifespan of the driveway. Therefore, maximize the lifespan of the driveway by protecting the edges, and also avoid driving along or off the edges.
Allow the driveway to cure before putting it into use
After its first installation, let the driveway cure fully of you want it to last longer. Typically, it takes an average of four to six days for asphalt paved surface to become usable after the first installation—but this also depends on the temperature of the area. Avoid driving or walking through the driveway until it’s fully dry.
Using the driveway after several days doesn’t mean that it’s cured—the curing process can take up to 12 months. Therefore, you shouldn’t allow heavy vehicles or loads to pass through since it’s not sturdy enough to support such weight.
In case you have a heavy vehicle or equipment, protect your asphalt paved driveway by placing plywood beneath the vehicle—this will ensure equal distribution of the load. If that’s not the case, don’t allow a heavy load to access your newly paved driveway for at least one month.
Schedule regular inspections
When you schedule regular inspections for your asphalt paved driveway, it becomes much easier to identify any defects that might worsen with time. Eventually, you will realize that it’s much easier to repair any defects that you identify early.
If you fail to do so, defects like cracks can become bigger, and this will require much more effort and money to repair them. You should walk on your driveway regularly, and search for signs of damages like irregularities, cracks, or discolorations. Having an expert do the inspections can even be better.
Clean your driveway regularly
Most homeowners tend to neglect cleaning their driveways. It’s not uncommon to find them full of leaves and other debris. When the leaves start to decompose, they can start forming ugly stains and marks on the surface. Therefore, ensure that you sweep your asphalt paved driveway regularly in the fall season to keep it clean.
People who live in areas with cold climate tend to use salt on their driveway—and this causes discoloration. If you are one of these people, ensure that you scrub your driveway thoroughly during the spring season. Never use power washing on your asphalt paved driveway unless you hire a professional to do the job.
However, there’s an easier way to clean your asphalt driveway without causing unnecessary damages—use water and dish soap. In a large bucket, fill three parts of water and one part of dish soap, and then scrub your driveway with a large scrubbing brush. Finally, rinse off the soapy water with a hose to give it a brand new look!
However, some stains like oil and grease stains are tough to remove. These stains are unappealing, and they can damage your curb appeal—which is important for people who want to sell their homes. To clean these stains, you will need to use an eco-friendly degreaser to remove these stains.