What is the most cost-effective resurfacing solution after repairing cracks, potholes and depressions in asphalt driveways and parking lots
By Jeff Lax
When it comes to old, worn asphalt driveways and parking lots, commercial real estate owners, property managers, and even owners of single-family homes struggle with the same questions: Do we repave or sealcoat after making repairs to cracks, potholes, and depressions? What is the most cost-effective and durable solution?
The industry has debated this issue for decades, and what has been learned is that each option has lasting, dramatic effects and that they actually complement one another. That’s the information pavement maintenance contractors need to convey to their clients who are trying to decide which pavement maintenance option best suits their needs and property.
Sealcoating is one of the most important steps to protecting an owner’s investment in an asphalt driveway or parking lot. Sealers consist of emulsions that combine asphalt or refined coal tar with clays, mineral fillers, and water. Once applied, the water evaporates and the emulsion hardens to form a protective coating. It also becomes a beautiful black surface that adds curb appeal, giving a single-family home, multi-family residence, or commercial or industrial property a polished look. Industry experts agree that driveways or parking lots lacking the sealer can generally last only five to six years before the beginning stages of breakdown.
Initial sealing should occur six to 12 months after the asphalt surface is laid to allow the pavement to “cure” so oils can escape and the surface becomes ready for sealer. The initial sealer application forms a barrier to prevent water penetration and to inhibit deterioration of the asphalt binder by oxidation and over-drying.
As unprotected pavement ages, the asphalt binder hardens, losing flexibility and becoming increasingly brittle. Ultraviolet rays from the sun break down the carbon bonds in asphalt, further weakening the pavement. Also, daily and seasonal cycles of heating and cooling cause the pavement to expand and contract. These stresses eventually exceed the pavement’s ability to flex, and cracks form. If water seeps into the cracks and freezes, the cracks expand, allowing more water to penetrate, making the cracks wider and deeper. This cycle leads to accelerated deterioration of the parking lot surface. Early sealcoating can prevent all these preliminary dangers to the life of the asphalt.
Sealer is typically the most cost-effective solution and should be reapplied every two to three years as preventative maintenance. In fact, several government and Asphalt Institute studies have shown that neglected asphalt pavement can cost up to five times as much to repair as asphalt that has had a regular maintenance program, including sealcoating.
Pavement maintenance begins by filling cracks, patching deteriorated areas, and cleaning (and possibly priming) oil-saturated spots on the pavement surface. The asphalt also must be cleaned of dirt and debris before sealer can be applied.
While some homeowners sealcoat their driveways themselves, professional contractors not only apply a high-quality sealer material but also have professional equipment such as crack cleaners and power blowers that often enable them to perform a longer-lasting, high-quality job. Plus, professional contractors can handle other pavement repairs that a homeowner won’t be aware of, so property managers at any level will be best served by hiring a pavement maintenance professional to handle their pavement.
Repaving is the only decision for driveways or parking lots that have severe deterioration, deep wide cracks, subsided depressions and numerous potholes.
An asphalt overlay consists of a compacted layer of one-and-a-half to two inches of hot mix asphalt being placed over the existing asphalt, essentially giving the driveway a new surface. Just as with sealcoating, the first task is repair of existing pavement. Areas, where the pavement surface has slumped, indicate failure of the stone foundation supporting the pavement. These areas require digging out existing asphalt, and repair and compaction of the stone base with new material before patching with asphalt mix to prevent trouble spots from returning after repaving. Then an overlay is placed over the old surface. No sealcoating should be added for six months to a year, just as with any newly constructed pavement.
And while an asphalt overlay can begin to deteriorate within five to six years without maintenance, it could last up to 25 years with regular upkeep. The upside to installing an overlay is the pavement has a renewed wearing course, providing a pliable, flexible surface. Also after the overlay, the maintenance program can start over, leading to a virtually brand new drive or lot. However, extreme weather, heavy loads, and shortcuts during construction could lead to premature wear and failure. The downside of repaving is that it is expensive (typically thousands of dollars more than sealing). Plus, if the original asphalt isn’t properly cleaned and prepared, cracks and uneven sections may return, as well as other problems that may not have previously existed such as delamination of the overlay because of poor adhesion to the old pavement.
What’s Better for your customer?
The amount and regularity of repaving will differ from climate to climate, and even when asphalt is maintained properly an asphalt overlay will be needed every 20 to 25 years.
Regardless of whether you repave or repair, sealcoating is one of the most important aspects of any pavement maintenance effort as it protects asphalt from weathering and degradation and extends pavement life. Without sealer, the asphalt could require an overlay in as little as five to six years, costing thousands of dollars. When comparing costs, industry experts believe the best investment a homeowner or commercial property owner can make is a well-tailored maintenance program that includes regular sealcoating.
In business today it's important to be professional. This includes the upkeep of property maintenance inside and outside of the business. Parking lot line painting is one of the most important aspects of external property maintenance and this article explains three excellent reasons why.
The parking lot of a business acts as a welcome mat for customers and can often act as a first impression to new clients. If the parking lot pavement markings are worn and barely visible it may give the impression to some clients that the owners are irresponsible or that they don't care about the way their property looks. Parking lots simply look better with a fresh coat of high grade traffic paint on the stall lines, handicap symbols, arrows, speed bumps and any other pavement markings the lot might have. When line painting is done it allows that mat to say "welcome" again.
2) Parking Organization
If there is no visible lines to indicate parking spaces in a parking lot, people will park anywhere and everywhere they can fit their vehicle. This is not good since it increases the chance of people getting boxed in and unable to get out of the lot. When parked vehicles are in disarray it can also increase the chance of dings and scratches to vehicles if navigation around the lot is tight and difficult. Parking stalls and drive lanes have regulated sizes for these reasons and a nicely painted lot keeps the parked traffic organized and moving vehicles can be driven through the area safely and easily.
3) Space Maximization
I can't count the number of times I've seen 20 vehicles in a "full" parking lot that could easily fit 24 or 25 automobiles if it had been given the correct line painting job done. It doesn't seem like much but let's say it's a restaurant that averages $50.00 per bill. That adds up to about $200.00 - $250.00 in revenue. This to me would be the most frustrating parking problem for the business owner since most of the time if people can't park at the establishment, they don't shop there either. Painting proper stall lines allows optimal space maximization that fits as many vehicles as the parking lot can safely manage.
These are three basic problems that can be easily avoided if the correct pavement markings are applied to the lot. As long as parking lot line painting is done by professionals it can be one of the quickest and effective aspects of external property maintenance.
There are many contributing factors that make asphalt a great material to use when paving a parking lot or an asphalt driveway. It is a relatively inexpensive material when compared to other material such as concrete or concrete paving blocks. Asphalt is a very durable product that stands up well to basic wear and tear of vehicle and foot traffic. Another great reason to use asphalt for your paving needs is that asphalt is a green product that is recycled more often than any other paving product.
Here are a few tips that will help you if you already have an asphalt driveway or parking lot surface that is in need of repairs. Although asphalt will need maintenance from time to time, it will only help in keeping future repair cost down to a minimum. If you are trying to do your own maintenance repairs, you will want to complete the repairs properly in order to get the maximum life out of your pavement. If you are hiring a contractor to handle the repairs for you, a little education on what to look for will help you choose the right contractor and also help you know what to look for once they're on the job.
Asphalt maintenance should be done periodically as needed. Sealcoating is one way to protect against water undermining the asphalt and reaching the base material beneath the asphalt. Ultraviolet rays can break down the binder material in asphalt allowing it to become brittle and fall apart. Sealcoating will give your asphalt surface protection against the ultraviolet rays. Sealcoating should be mixed to the proper specifications and should not be diluted to in order to stretch out the product. This will not give the asphalt the same protection. The first coat can be sprayed on to ensure the material gets into the smaller cracks to seal off and stop any future water penetration.
If you have areas in your asphalt pavement that have potholes or noticeably large alligator cracks you may need to remove these areas in order to repair them correctly. The first step in this process is to cut out the affected area with a saw. Next, you will need to remove any excess materials from the affected area. Once the area is cleaned of any debris, apply a tach coat to make the new hot asphalt adhere to the cut-out area. Then apply the new asphalt, and always make sure to compact the newly installed asphalt.
Driveway sealing is an easy and cost-effective way to protect and prolong the life of your driveway. Asphalt surfaces are particularly susceptible to wear and tear, both from weather and from automobile traffic, and the grade of asphalt commonly used on driveways is even more so. Driveway sealing at regular intervals gives your driveway the added protection it needs to last longer and resist deterioration.
Needs Regular Upkeep
If you’re not sure on this point, consider the constant upkeep the asphalt roads in your community need in order to stay in good shape. Add to that the fact that the asphalt used on roads is generally a higher grade and made to withstand a higher level of abuse than the asphalt typically used in driveway applications, and you can see why it’s important to keep up on regular maintenance, including asphalt sealing, in order to fend off major projects such as repaving a crumbling asphalt surface.
Sealing your driveway has many benefits when it comes to preserving your concrete driveway. First and foremost, a properly applied driveway sealer repels water, perhaps the single most harmful agent when it comes to deteriorating asphalt surfaces. Concrete has a natural tendency to crack if water is allowed to permeate it, and this tendency is only increased by the weight of cars regularly driving over it. Once those cracks appear, water further damages it, especially in cold climates where it expands and contracts with freezing temperatures.
Other enemies of your driveway include sunlight and oxygen, both of which hasten corrosion. By regularly applying a quality driveway sealer to your concrete you can prevent water, sunlight, and air from permeating your asphalt and prevent these problems. As an added benefit, driveway sealing also repels oil spills and leaks and makes it much easier for you to sweep and clean your driveway surface.
When to Apply
As a general rule, you should seal your driveway every 1 to 3 years. More specifically, if you can see the color of the individual stones that make up your asphalt surface, you know it’s time to seal it up. A few rules apply before you seal, however. For starters, never seal a new asphalt driveway. Asphalt needs a minimum of six months for the oils in it to evaporate. The less oil, the harder the driveway, which is the goal. If you apply driveway sealer before your asphalt has time to cure, it won’t achieve the necessary hardness and all your work will be for naught. Other things to consider are the outside temperature, which must be fifty degrees or higher for the sealer to adhere properly, and the weather. Ideally, you want your sealer to be on your driveway for at least 48 hours before any rain comes down on it.
Talk to a Professional
Driveway sealing is an important aspect of asphalt driveway maintenance, however, it’s not the only thing you need to keep up on. If your driveway has pre-existing cracks, potholes or other signs of wear, it’s vital that you fix those problems before you apply a sealant. That being the case, your best bet is to contact a professional that won’t only apply your sealant, but who will also evaluate your driveway for other maintenance needs that need to be addressed before you perform this necessary task.
Creating a driveway on your property is important to help you protect your lawns. However, when creating driveways or pathways, it is imperative that you make use of durable materials like asphalt.
As of now, asphalt driveways and pathways are very popular. However, there are cases when homeowners may notice unsightly issues. Thus, landscaping experts recommend homeowners to opt for asphalt sealcoating. With this solution, homeowners can obtain wonderful features that can benefit them. Below are some of the following.
To prevent small cracks
One of the reasons why landscaping experts recommend asphalt sealcoating is to prevent small cracks. Cracks on asphalt are caused by numerous factors. These include moisture, ground movements and erosion, excessive weight as well as improper installation. Fortunately, cracks can be eliminated by using sealcoating. This solution can also hide patches and rough areas. To reduce damages caused by chemicals
The next reason why landscaping experts recommend asphalt sealcoating is to reduce damages caused by chemicals. This is possible since asphalt sealcoating fills surface voids, which reduces exposure to oxygen and UV rays and reduces the depth to which oil or gas can penetrate the asphalt. Other than that, sealcoating can also prevent oxidation and erosion of the top layer and replaces fine particles lost from the asphalt surface due to oxidation on older pavements. And, it also resists gas, diesel fuel, oil, salt and chemical penetration which will break down the bond between the aggregate and the liquid asphalt.
To eliminate water damage
Using asphalt sealcoating can also help homeowners eliminate water damage. Water can easily damage asphalt since it enters the asphalt. Because of this, moisture can be formed which can affect the quality and reliability of asphalt. By using sealcoating, you can prevent water from entering the asphalt since it can protect the surface properly. To improve aesthetics
With the use of sealcoating homeowners can also improve the aesthetics of their asphalt. Due to aging, the color of the asphalt fades. However, sealcoating can protect its color since this solution is dark and black colored when applied. To reduce maintenance costs
Finally, landscaping experts can also reduce their maintenance costs when using sealcoating. When it comes to repairs, asphalt repairs can be expensive since you need to hire specialists in order to properly remove cracks and other asphalt issues. On the other hand, sealcoating can easily leave a smooth, clean surface ideal for sweeping, which lowers cleaning costs and for a driveway and gives your entrance a fresh and new look.
These are only some of the benefits that homeowners can obtain when investing in sealcoating solutions from reliable landscaping experts.
Asphalt or Concrete? This is a segment that was aired on the HomeWoRx television show with Gary Sullivan on network TV in Cincinnati, Ohio. Hear the pros and cons of installing an asphalt or concrete driveway.
Vaca Vet Striping has got you covered. We have over 30 years experience doing business as ACE Paving Company, with a General Engineering Class A Contractor’s License #389714. We strive to provide quality work and great service at an affordable cost. Vaca Vet Striping service area is Solano, Napa, Yolo, and Sacramento counties.
Making sure your parking lot lines are repainted when they fade is not only important for the safety of the drivers that use your parking lot, but it also says a lot about your business. When your parking lot lines, speed bumps, arrows and handicaps are freshly painted it shows that you take pride in your business and makes your place of business look great.
Not all line painting service providers are equal. You will find that some line painting companies are conscientious and take time to make sure the job is done well while some companies only want to get in and out as fast as possible.
When you choose your provider there are a couple things you can do to make sure you are get a quality job. First, visit the provider's website. Is there website professionally done or does it look like they just threw it up in a day? Look for pictures of their work. Do their lines look straight? Is there any overspray? Do they use nice stencils, or do they used outdated or ugly fonts and arrows? Line painting should always offer free quotes, so when they come in to estimate your parking lot it is a good opportunity to get a sense of what kind of people are working for the company.
If you really want to be sure, the best thing you can do is ask for the address of a job they recently painted which is in the area. Then you can go and observe how much care they used in their painting.
Here are some other things to consider. Line painting should only be done in warmer weather and the road needs to be completely dry. It can not be done when the pavement is damp from rainfall. Also, the cleaner the pavement the better. In order to ensure the maximum durability of your paint job you may want to consider pressure washing the pavement if it is particularly dirty or grimy. Line painting should be done every 1-2 years for high traffic areas and every 2-4 years for low traffic areas.
The next time you need to get your parking lot repainted remember to use these tips to evaluate the different line painting providers that work in your area. Once you find a good line painting company make sure you keep their business card and use them the next time you need your lines done. It will be easy for them to repaint your lines and pavement markings because they are sure to have matching stencils. Good luck!
Asphalt pavements have the worst kind of treatment. With time, they start to weather. This often leads to creating mishaps while driving. A clean pavement is not seen much these days, and not many people are aware of asphalt paving companies. A perfect driveway with clean boundaries and a perfect landing for a car park is very much in need.
Most city streets have existing asphalt paving but they are not maintained properly. With natural pollutants such as smoke, air and rain, the pavements get corroded and the asphalt layer soon erodes off. A new coat of asphalt not only evens out the driveways but also ensures a safe and smooth journey. But have you ever wondered what it takes to zero on the right asphalt paving company for your project? It is no doubt a cumbersome job, but a little effort from your end will help you put your worries at bay.
For all driveways, the length and width is measured before getting quotes from various asphalt paving companies. The measurements are taken and the driveway is cleaned to remove dust and dirt for easy layering of asphalt over the existing layer. Most of the contractors quote estimates based on the exact measurements taken from the driveway. For repairing an existing driveway, the old layer of asphalt is scrapped off and the surface is cleaned and polished to put a fresh coat of asphalt mix.
If you had never installed a driveway earlier, you must remove all the grass from the respective area. There should be nothing but flat dirt in the region where you wish to install your driveway. If the dirt foundation is not strong enough, you should prepare one to avoid the asphalt from cracking with the passage of time. Without making a good foundation for a driveway, calling for an asphalt paving company will not be of much use. When you are done with making a strong base, invite quotes from different companies.
The asphalt contractors quote estimations based on the current cost of asphalt, labor charges, material costs and the overall expense for paving the driveway. The client can oversee a few more quotes from various other asphalt paving companies and make a better choice based on the estimate that tallies with the preferred budget.
Cracks in pavements allow moisture to penetrate the surface which causes potholes, cracks and eventually total asphalt failure. Failure to seal cracks results in further cracking and will lead to expensive asphalt replacement.
To prevent water from infiltrating to the base it is recommended that a hot rubberized crack sealant be professionally applied with professional crack sealing equipment. Cold applied crack sealing materials available at Hardware Stores / Home Improvement Chains are designed to be applied to residential driveways and are not capable of giving you the performance or longevity which is standard from hot poured crack sealants.
Hot rubberized crack sealing in asphalt parking lots, roads, shopping centers, HOA Associations and other asphalt surfaces is one of the most cost-effective preventative maintenance processes available. Any effective Pavement Management Plan includes annual hot rubberized crack sealing. Who uses crack sealing?
* Property & Facility Managers
* Homeowner (HOA) Communities
* Shopping Centers
* Apartments & Condominiums
* Office Complexes
* industrial Parks
* Any owners/managers of asphalt parking lots
It is important to begin a crack sealing program at the first sign of crack developing which can be anywhere from 2-5 years after initial asphalt installation.
The application of linear striping, arrows, stop bars, and handicap insignias, etc. We use a plasticized material that when heated with adhere permanently to asphalt and concrete surfaces.
We understand the importance of quality asphalt maintenance and the importance of leaving a lasting impression to prospective tenants, home buyers, customers, and the general public.
Vaca Vet Striping has over 30 years of experience doing business as ACE Paving Company, with a General Engineering Class A Contractor’s License #389714. We strive to provide quality work and great service at an affordable cost. Vaca Vet Striping service area is Solano, Napa, Yolo, and Sacramento counties.
When you're spending the money to have your driveway or parking
lot professionally paved, you don't want the asphalt to deteriorate any sooner than necessary. Sealcoat the surface to protect your walking and
driving areas from wear and tear.
Have you noticed cracks or holes forming in your asphalt driveway or parking lot, thanks to years of car
and foot traffic? Or are you laying down new pavement and want to make
it last as long as possible? Professional pavers employ a process known
as sealcoating to lengthen the life of an asphalt surface. Sealcoating
will not only make your driveway or parking lot more durable but will
also help it maintain its clean, smooth look in the face of repeated
use. Contact a paving contractor in your area to discuss whether
sealcoating is right for your new or existing asphalt surface.
How It Works
tough as it is, asphalt can be damaged by sun exposure, excessive rain,
ice, and temperature changes. Years of gasoline and oil drippings from
cars can also cause surface deterioration. Not only will deteriorating
asphalt fade from a crisp black to an ugly gray, but it can also become
rough and crack open-and water accumulating in pavement cracks or holes
can lead to further damage. Sealcoating a pavement area approximately 60
days after the initial asphalt application will protect it from weather
and car fluid damage in the years ahead, lengthening the overall life
of your paving. Driveway sealer is composed of a coal-tar emulsion,
sometimes fortified with rubber or silica sand for increased durability.
A paving contractor will apply sealer either by brush or by spraying it
over the area; the method may depend upon the size of the area to be
sealed, or upon the individual contractor's preference.
Repair and Resealing
you want to seal a driveway or parking lot that is several years old
and has already begun to deteriorate, the paving contractor must first
repair the damaged asphalt. This may involve filling any holes or cracks
in the pavement, as well as smoothing out rough areas. It's also a good
idea to clean up any oil stains before applying sealcoating, as once
they're sealed in, those stains are permanent. In general, you should
apply a new coat of driveway sealer every two to three years. Resealing
and minor repairs will almost always be less expensive than having to
completely replace the pavement.
Having a sealed
driveway or parking lot surface has benefits far beyond the money saved
on re-paving. For starters, the smooth, sealed finish will be easier to
clean than cracked, stained asphalt, enabling you to keep your property
looking its best. Even more importantly, sealed pavement is safer to
walk and drive on. Large cracks and holes can pose a tripping hazard for
individuals of all ages. Meanwhile, brittle, deteriorating asphalt can
form potholes, which can prove hazardous to drivers. Properly
maintaining your driveway or parking lot area by sealcoating the asphalt
will protect both your investment and the individuals who use the
space. Contact a parking lot or driveway paving specialist near you to learn more about your sealcoating options.
Do you own a commercial property with an asphalt parking lot or a private residence with an asphalt driveway? If you do own or manage some type of asphalt pavement you will need to take proper care of the surface. In the long run, it will save you time and money. While taking proper care of the pavement does have some cost associated with it, it is not near the cost of having to later fix any damage that has already occurred to the asphalt. If you notice that you already have potholes or large cracks starting to appear, it is in your best interest to address the issues as soon as possible.
The first step in maintaining an asphalt pavement is crack sealing, crack sealing prevents water from entering the pavements sub-base through cracks in the asphalt surface. If these cracks are left untreated they will eventually turn into potholes and destroy the asphalt surface and the base beneath the asphalt. Once you allow this to happen there is no maintaining the asphalt, you are now looking at having to replace the pavement. It is important to clean the cracks thoroughly before filling them. You will need to clean out any and all debris. This will help ensure the material adheres to the surface correctly. Once all of the cracks are completely cleaned and filled with the asphalt fill material, water will no longer be able to enter beneath the pavement down to the sub-base material. By using this technique you have increased the lifespan of your asphalt pavement in the most beneficial and cost-effective way.
Sealcoating your parking lot is definitely a great way to protect your asphalt surface as well. Sealcoating your asphalt will help protect against the suns ultraviolet rays and also keep any water from entering small cracks in the pavement. The asphalt sealcoating material needs to be mixed to the manufactures specifications. The sealcoat material needs to be applied in two coats. The first coat of sealer should be applied with a squeegee to push the sealer into the cracks of the pavement. The next coat may be applied using a spray technique. The spray of the sealcoat ensures a uniform coat over the entire asphalt surface. Be sure to allow the proper drying time of the sealcoat before using the asphalt pavement. Sealcoating of the asphalt surface should be done as necessary to help ensure the lifespan of your asphalt surface.
In business, it is important to always put your best foot
forward, and that step can start with fresh parking lot striping. Fresh
paint provides a good first impression for arriving customers. Faded and
cracked lines, potholes, and crumbling chocks are not only an eyesore,
but can also be a safety hazard as well. To ensure customers can park
their cars with ease and navigate the car park without any confusion,
regular maintenance is crucial.
Clear parking lot striping will
not only help visitors navigate easily, but well-planned spacing can
also help maximize a small area, squeezing in extra spots for cars so
that you don't unintentionally lose business. Most car parks are also
required by local regulations to meet certain codes which include a
specific number of designated handicap spaces for disabled individuals
(how many will depend on the location and size of the area). These will
require an extra wide border to be clearly marked, allowing for room to
remove wheelchairs or other necessary mobility devices. Codes may also
require specific stenciling and marked fire lanes.
If the area is
jointly operated by several businesses, it can be helpful to designate
specific spots directly in front of doors exclusively to one shop. This
is particularly useful for quick-stop stores located next to businesses
with longer transactions such as restaurants or movie theaters. Keeping a
few spaces free and marked for fifteen minutes or less is another way
to keep traffic flowing, turning away fewer customers during peak
periods. Spaces can be stencil-painted and bordered in a different color
to distinguish it from others.
Proper parking lot striping is
also a valuable safety tool that can help you cut back on collisions,
slip and falls, or other potential hazards. In addition to keeping the
paint fresh and direction arrows clear to improve traffic flow, consider
re-paving the entire car park if it is extremely damaged. Large holes
and cracks can not only damage vehicles, but people can fall and hurt
themselves. And if it happened on your property, you may have a lawsuit
on your hands. Smashed chocks are another common problem that is often
overlooked. Chocks are the bumpers located between spaces or in front of
sidewalks to prevent vehicles from moving too far. Over time, the
constant stress from car bumps, or even just a single hard hit can
result in them cracking and shifting. The rubble left behind can be
dangerous to pedestrians and cyclists.
Parking lot striping
professionals generally offer several other benefits in addition to
their painting skills. Included in their services are often a cleaning
of the area using power washing to lift and blast away long-standing
grime, a basic warranty covering unexpected fading or stains for the
first few months or longer, and help re-planning the area if needed.
Most paints are fast-drying, so you won't have to worry about closing
off the area for long. Always choose a company that is licensed,
experienced, and fully insured so that you will receive quality work
that you can depend on.
One of the most common questions that I'm asked is, “Will I see the repairs when they're done?” My answer is always the same - yes. It's impossible to match old asphalt using new asphalt, even with infrared repairs. How well a repair blends with the surrounding asphalt depends on one main factor, how many times the surrounding asphalt has been sealed. Each time you sealcoat your asphalt, the voids between the aggregate get filled in a little more. The more times a driveway has been sealed, the less texture it has, leaving little chance it will match up with new asphalt that has more texture. Just imagine your old driveway next to a new driveway, that's the difference you will see.
A follow up question I hear a lot is, “Won't it blend in after I sealcoat?” It will blend better with a sealcoat (same color), but the textures will still be different and the repairs will be visible. Asphalt surfaces that have only been sealed a few times can eventually blend in pretty well with a few sealcoats, over a few years. If a new driveway is what you're looking for, you’ll need a paving company that can give you a new driveway. Infrared repairs are a nice option if a large portion of your asphalt is in good shape and you can accept that the repairs will not be invisible.
With warm weather, comes maintenance and repairs to parking lots and driveways. Sealcoating your parking lot or driveway is an easy way to extend the life of asphalt and improve the curb appeal of your property - saving you money in the long run. If sealcoating is avoided, a crack can start forming in the asphalt, which then leads to potholes.
Some benefits of sealcoating asphalt include:
Reduces long term repair costs
Accelerates melting of snow and ice on the pavement surface
Protects your pavement from oxidation, oil and chemical spills
Protects against water penetration, rain, frost and snow damage
Enhances the appearance of your building and landscape
Prolongs pavement life, safeguarding your investment
If you’re looking to increase your property value and curb appeal by dressing up your driveway, fixing an irritating drainage problem, enhancing the aesthetics via site grading we got you covered!
Vaca Vet Striping has over 30 years experience doing business as ACE Paving Company, with a General Engineering Class A Contractor’s License #389714. We strive to provide quality work and great service at an affordable cost. Vaca Vet Striping service area is Solano, Napa, Yolo, and Sacramento counties.
Typically it's a good idea to restripe your parking lot every 18 to 24 months, depending on your location and climate. Restriping your parking lot enhances curb appeal and the safety of your customers.
If you own a parking lot, it is important to make sure that the lot is always in the best shape possible, naturally. You want it asphalt to be intact and sealed, and you want the stripes and spaces in the lot to be clear and bright. It offers a range of benefits for your parking lot and business. There are many times that you should consider restriping the parking lot.
Typically, it is going to be a good idea to restripe about every 18 to 24 months, at least. However, it will also depend on the location of your business, and a host of other factors.
For example, if you live in a climate where it snows, you probably rely on snowplows to come along and remove the snow from your parking lot. While this is beneficial to ensure that your parking lot is up and usable for the customers, it also means that there is the potential for those plows to scrape away some of the lines in the parking lot. In those cases, it is generally going to be a good idea to restripe annually. After the last snow of the year has gone, set up an appointment to have your parking lot restriped or paint new parking lot lines yourself.
If you have had asphalt repairs and sealcoating on your parking lot, then you are certainly going to need to have restriping completed before you can open up the parking lot to your customers. The sealcoating is going to cover up the lines, so once it has dried, you will need to make sure that you have someone come out to add the stripes to the parking lot.
Keep Up With the ADA Code
In addition, you will want to be sure that you keep up with the requirements from the American Disability Act. This will indicate what you are going to need in terms of disabled parking spaces, and you need to be sure your parking lot is fully compliant. In some cases, this might mean having a striping company come out to your parking lot as soon as possible to make the updates to help bring the parking lot up to code.
What Are the Benefits of Regular Restriping?
For starters, you want to think about the curb appeal of the property. Having nice clean and easy to see lines in the parking lot is going to make it look better. We’ve all seen old parking lots that don’t have lines or whose lines have faded over the years. They look neglected. If the owner doesn’t care enough to take care of the parking lot striping, it typically means they do not care much about the buildings and stores that are in the parking lot, or the rest of the upkeep they should be taking care of.
If you are planning to resell the property, not painting the strips and improving that curb appeal is going to hurt the resale value. It might seem like a small thing, but it is very important. It will help to show that the business is well cared for, and that can help to make getting a sale easier.
In addition, there is a safety factor that you have to think about when it comes to the parking lot. If the parking lot has not properly been striped, it means that people are not going to know where to park properly, and this can cause confusion and an element of danger in the parking lot. You need to have clear parking spots and directional lines in your parking lot for the safety of the vehicles and drivers, as well as pedestrians that are walking through the parking lot.
And if you've ever been in a parking lot in a snowstorm, you know that not being able to see the parking lot lines means people put a lot of space between their cars and you get fewer of them in a lot. If you have a busy business, using every parking space affects your bottom line: make it clear to your customers where they can park.
High traffic parking areas often add reflective glass beads in the stripes, which are going to be easier to see in the evening when headlights hit them. These can add an extra layer of safety, and they can be a nice solution for many types of parking lots, including airports and hospitals.
Get In Touch With Professionals Or Do It Yourself
Now that you know why and when you should be restriping your parking lot, it is time to get in touch with a company that can take care of the restriping for you. Always make sure that you are dealing with professionals who have the right equipment and who understand ADA compliancy. Many times, the same company that you hire to take care of the asphalt repair and the sealcoating will be able to offer the restriping services you need. It could be a good idea to have one company that can take care of everything needed for your parking lot.
Asphalt sealing is an important part of maintaining a driveway or parking lot made of this material. It should be performed every two to three years to protect the pavement from developing damage that could shorten its life span. If you miss this maintenance, you could develop one or more of the issues below.
What Can Happen When You Skip Asphalt Sealing
1. Freeze-Thaw Expansion & Fracturing
The winter can be absolutely brutal on asphalt, particularly due to the freeze-thaw cycle. This occurs when water seeps down into the pavement, freezes, and expands — resulting in cracks. As the water thaws, it will then creep even deeper into the material, repeating this process and leading to numerous fractures. Asphalt sealing prevents this by covering any small cracks in the material and keeping water out year-round.
2. Sun Drying
asphalt sealing cookeville tnWhen the sun’s harmful ultraviolet rays beat down on asphalt, they damage it in a way similar to how they affect your skin. The chemical bonds in the pavement begin to deteriorate, leading to cracks and other damage on the surface. Asphalt sealing prevents this by covering the blacktop in anti-oxidation additives and other aggregates that act as a barrier.
3. Surface Softening
Since asphalt pavement is predominantly used by vehicles, it will most likely experience some auto fluid spills. When oil, gas, and similar liquids fall onto the surface, they will be absorbed by the asphalt and cause it to soften. While these spills can be easily cleaned up in most cases, overtime they can result in cracks or a deterioration of the aggregates comprising the blacktop.
Oftentimes, when you travel, you see well-paved roads which make the trip a whole lot easier and comfortable. Ever wonder how these roads are built? Well, it is apparent that most of the roads around the country are part of an asphalt paving project that was completed sometime in the past. It's not surprising that among numerous choices for paving, asphalt is often the top and the most popular option. It clearly differs from other paving materials, such as concrete, simply because it's more versatile and economical too. Definitely, it is among the most common substances in use today. Not only is it used in paving roads, parking lots and driveways; it is also used in coatings, batteries, adhesives and asphalt shingles in roofs.
Like other paving materials, asphalt requires a specific process and skilled workers to apply the material properly to achieve a smoothly paved surface. It is also durable and waterproof in nature. Apart from being a bit messy, it is relatively easy to pour, flatten, shape and finish. It's notable that it hardens quickly, too. Ideally, it is used in regions where the weather is dominantly cold throughout the year. This would prevent the paving material from softening, which happens only if used in places with extremely hot climates.
A good number of homeowners choose to have asphalt in paving or repaving their driveways. Apparently, it is the most economical among all driveway options. It won't be hard to install as well. However, hiring highly skilled and experienced paving contractors can be quite a challenge. Make sure that the company has a good reputation and previous projects which are exceptionally done. Don't simply trust the contractor who offers the cheapest price. Remember that among them all, a percentage is scam artists.
It is best to hire contractors who are certainly up to the job so your paving project can be completed right on schedule. Some of these companies even offer free estimates. Keep in mind that while you're concerned with the job done on time, it is also vital that the workmanship is indeed good. It will ensure that you don't have to repeat the project and you won't worry about repaving your driveway for a long time.
The advantages of using asphalt apart from other pavers are quite evident. Its being cost-effective is perhaps its best benefit. Other pavers such as concrete are also a good choice, but it's mostly good for warm regions. And if you'd rather go for a stylish option, you can have bricks as pavers.
Choosing pavers is totally up to you, but you can definitely opt for asphalt if you want a quality and practical choice for your paving project.
Nothing lasts forever, and asphalt is no exception. There comes a time with every parking lot where you need to ask whether it’s time to repair it, or replace it altogether.
A properly paved asphalt lot can last 20 – 30 years, but the lifespan and condition of any lot depend on many factors. Let’s take a look at the various kinds of damage and repairs, and when you should replace a lot entirely.
The Types of Asphalt Damage
Cracking can take many forms, including shrinkage, widening, edge cracks, slippage, alligator cracks, and reflection. Cracks are caused by many different factors, such as water penetration, oxidation from the sun, freezing, and thawing, and poor initial construction. Even the most minor cracks should be sealed as soon as possible, as small cracks can grow into bigger problems. Water or other debris can settle inside, causing the crack to grow, softening the base, and further threatening the integrity of the pavement. Larger cracks may be a warning sign of deeper issues.
Rutting is when the pavement shows depressions, or grooves, from wear and tear caused by wheel loads. Ruts can be dangerous, leading to vehicles hydroplaning (from ponded water) that can result in loss of driver control. They can also be a result of deeper sub-soil or design problems, and lead to further deterioration. Ruts less than ⅓ inch deep can generally be left as is, but deeper ruts should be leveled and resurfaced.
When It’s Time To Repair
Crack sealing is exactly what it sounds like – filling small cracks to prevent further damage. Cracks that are straight or less than a quarter-inch wide can easily be repaired with a liquid filler. Before sealcoating or resurfacing, all cracks and existing damage must be repaired, so crack sealing is the first step towards further repair and necessary ongoing maintenance responsibility. A yearly schedule of crack sealing is best to prolong the life of your lot.
After you’ve filled any cracks, you can apply a layer of sealcoating. Sealant keeps the lot looking new and prevents corrosion from a variety of elements, including water, oxidation, UV rays, and oil and gas spills. The ideal time to seal asphalt pavement is when deterioration is first discovered. A new asphalt lot should not be sealed until it is at least 6 months old, and should be resealed every 2 – 4 years, depending on weather and amount of traffic.
Resurfacing (aka overlaying)
Resurfacing, also known as overlaying, adds a new layer of asphalt, generally 1.5 – 2 inches in depth, on top of the older one. If done right, a new layer of asphalt can add 8 – 15 years to your current lot and costs less than a full replacement. All cracks and damage to the old layer need to be repaired before resurfacing, as un-repaired cracks will undermine the new layer. Resurfacing in cold weather can lead to premature deterioration, so the rule of thumb is to pave when temperatures are 50° F and above. Just because a lot is showing serious wear and tear and cracking, that doesn’t mean it needs to be replaced. Resurfacing is a great option to improve the condition of your lot without spending a lot of money.
Mill and Resurface
Resurfacing sometimes is not an option due to existing drainage patterns. When this is an issue milling and resurfacing may be a viable choice. Milling the surface involves the removal of the top layer of asphalt (usually 1” to 1.5”). Once the asphalt is removed, it is then replaced with a new layer of asphalt. Though this is one of the more expensive repairs, the quality of the final product and the service life can rival that of a new parking lot.
When It’s Time to Replace
Sometimes, a parking lot is beyond the point where even resurfacing will help. The answer to whether you should repair or replace essentially comes down to the condition of the lot’s base. Resurfacing is only as good as the surface it is layered on top of. If your parking lot is failing due to an underlying design, structural, sub-soil, or construction issue, none of the resurfacing options listed above will solve the problem in the long term. Though the parking lot will initially look better, the “repair” will be short-lived.
If a parking lot is approaching 20 years of age, or if 25-35% of the total surface area is in need of removal due to significant damage, it is generally more economical and effective to completely reconstruct the parking lot. With proper maintenance, your new lot can last another 20 – 30 years.
Proper evaluation and recommendations are critical to avoid any financial missteps in getting your parking lot back on-line.
Asphalt maintenance is one facet of property management that is overlooked on a regular basis. If a property owner has a hole in their parking lot, it is not treated with the same urgency that a hole in their roof would require. Unfortunately, this neglect of their asphalt leads to more costly repairs in the future that could have been avoided if the property owner would have followed a preventative maintenance plan for their asphalt.
What is asphalt maintenance? Asphalt maintenance consists of protecting asphalt by employing the following methods (asphalt seal coating, crack repair and asphalt repair) to prevent damage to the existing asphalt.
So why should a property owner have their asphalt seal coated? From the very first moment that asphalt is installed, it starts a deterioration process. The asphalt is diminished when the binder that holds all of the aggregate (stone) together begins to oxide from sunlight, water, and other external conditions. Through the seal coating process, the asphaltic binder is now protected from the aforementioned external conditions. An additional benefit from asphalt seal coating is that the asphalt is now protected from the damaging effects from gasoline, oil, and de-icing salts. The most obvious benefit from asphalt seal coating is the restoration of the original color of the asphalt. The asphalt regains that new appearance for a fraction of the original cost.
Asphalt seal coating is a process in which coal tar emulsion or asphalt emulsion is sprayed or brushed on the asphalt surface. The seal coat material should be applied in two coats in general areas and three coats in the high traffic areas, such as drive lanes.
There is much debate as to what is the best application method for the seal coat material. There is a predominant mindset amongst "old school" seal coaters that brushing the seal coat material is the only way to go. However, there are some shortcomings in the brushing technique. By brushing the seal coat material the natural indentations of the asphalt are filled in and the asphalt loses its traction. Also, contrary to popular belief thicker is not better when applying the seal coat material. The sealcoat material should be applied at .17 gal/sq. yd. and should never exceed .51 gal/sq. yd. total.
With the shortcomings of brushing the seal coat material being stated, there is a better alternative. That alternative is spraying the seal coat material. This method allows the seal coat material to be applied evenly without filling the natural grooves of the asphalt. If a contractor states that they brush exclusively, take caution in dealing with these companies. Many times these companies have not invested in updated equipment, which will prevent them from completing the bigger seal coating jobs.
Another aspect of seal coating that is overlooked by customers is the mixture of the seal coat material itself. The material is should be mixed at 25 to 35 gallons of water per 100 gallons of concentrated sealer. Also, the seal coat material should be enhanced with 2-5 pounds of sand per every gallon of sealer. The sand is used to restore traction to the surface after the asphalt has been treated. When creating work specifications make sure to include the amount of desired sand required per gallon of sealer. The smoother the existing surface or the higher the traffic volume will require higher volumes of sand in the seal coat material.
In addition to asphalt seal coating, crack repair is vital to properly caring for asphalt. Due to the settling of the ground, poor base design and asphalt oxidation asphalt will crack. When the asphalt cracks it is exposed to water damage. Water penetrates the cracks and gravity pulls it into the sub-base (stones) which deteriorates that support structure. This deterioration leads to asphalt depressions, potholes, and further cracking. Also, in the winter when water expands in the cracks via the freezing process, the cracks widen over time.
Hot tar is applied to the cracks to prevent water penetration. Hot tar is melted to 375 degrees and poured into the cracks. To finish the crack repair process the hot tar is squeezed into the crack to create a 4-inch band. All debris should be removed from the cracks before treatment. Crack repair is a temporary fix and does not replace the need to actually replace the asphalt. However, crack repair is much more cost-effective than actual asphalt replacement.
It is said that if 30% or more of asphalt is deteriorated, it is more cost-effective to replace it. With that being said, the majority of property owners choose to replace certain sections at a time. One thing to keep in mind is that if an area of asphalt needs replaced because it was sinking, there is definitely a problem with the sub-base and that should be replaced as well.
If the asphalt needs to be replaced there are two methods for replacement. The conventional method is to saw cut the area and replace the asphalt and seal the seams with hot tar. Another modern method consists of using an Infrared Heater to heat the existing asphalt, then additional asphalt is added and the area is compacted. The benefits of using an Infrared heater is that the fix is a seamless fix that will no longer allow water penetration. The major fall back with using infrared is that if there is an existing sub-base problem, the asphalt will not be properly repaired if it is only re-heated and not actually removed to replace the underlying stone. In the right conditions, Infrared treatments to asphalt add extra benefits to the property owner because of the final aspect of seamless repair.
The bottom line is that property managers should incorporate an effective asphalt maintenance strategy into their overall preventative maintenance strategy. The benefits of asphalt seal coating, crack repair and asphalt replacement will pay dividends in the future through the avoidance of costly new asphalt. One last point, the asphalt maintenance and pavement marking industry have a wide fluctuation in the quality of contractors, so always do your due diligence in the selection process.
If you are a business owner, chances are that you have given the interior of your business more weight in terms of finishing and overall appeal while you have neglected the surrounding areas. Even then, you will be surprised to learn how important facade is when it comes to attracting customers.
As such, it is advisable to pay attention to the exteriors, such as driveways by making them appealing to the eye. In most instances, the majority of residential and commercial driveways are finished with concrete or asphalt. Asphalt is particularly a preferred choice for many people, as it is about 30-40 percent cheaper compared to concrete.
The benefits of asphalt are much greater than concrete. Here are some reasons why asphalt driveways are a must for your business:
Flexibility – When compared with concrete, asphalt is more elastic and able to withstand severe weather conditions. The liquid asphalt component allows asphalt to remain flexible, and better able to handle expansion and contraction.
Resilient – Asphalt is best equipped to withstand wear and tear resulting from high traffic that is common in many commercial establishments. Furthermore, it requires less maintenance making it an ideal choice of materials for your surface.
Aesthetic value – Not only does asphalt have a smooth surface, but it also looks cleaner. Asphalt can also be freshened up with a coat of asphalt sealer, restoring its original appearance. In addition, it is liquefied making it customizable. Thus, you can easily stamp in designs as well as decorations.
Environmental friendly – Asphalt driveways contain reclaimed asphalt pavement (RAP) that is 100% recyclable. RAP refers to old asphalt that is usually milled from pavements that have reached the end of their service life. Asphalt binder is used in the RAP meaning that a minimal amount of virgin asphalt and petroleum are used. Consequently, less mining aggregates are used. Other environmental benefits include cooler asphalt temperatures and reduction of storm system basins. Moreover, when in its porous form, asphalt requires less energy for manufacturing, significantly reducing odor, emissions as well as smoke.
Economical – Asphalt paving is usually less costly upfront compared to concrete paving. In addition, choosing asphalt for your driveway is cost-effective in the long run. That is, it reduces the overall lifetime cost of a paving project. Asphalt helps to reduce the demand on storm sewers effectively eliminating some of the local government impact fees. Apart from a quick installation that allows traffic to return in the shortest time possible, the long-term repairs and maintenance costs of asphalt are also low. On the other hand, concrete takes long to lay and set, this can result in loss of business. In terms of repairs, a crack on asphalt can be repaired inexpensively and quickly.
Versatile – The installation of asphalt driveways can be done over time depending on availability of funds. Thus, when traffic loading increases, installation can be done at night or during off-peak times when there is minimal disruption of traffic. Asphalt layers may be on a needs basis.
Safe – Asphalt driveway construction can only mean shorter lane closures translating to more safety for vehicles as well as workers within the work zone.
When completed, asphalt driveways offer other benefits over concrete driveways that include the following:
They are skid resistant as they offer high friction due to the use of durable aggregates.
The surface is smoother compared to cement.
The surfaces greatly reduce the degree of spraying and splashing during storms. This improves driver visibility.
The black asphalt surface also aids in a visible delineation of pavement markings and lanes.
Investing in an asphalt driveway is a good move as the benefits far outweigh the initial investment. If anything, asphalt driveways will attract potential customers to come to your business where they can engage you more thus, adding value to your business.
The condition of your driveway can make or break your home's curb appeal. It takes a beating all year long, but the summer sun can really take a toll. The harsher the weather, the more often you need to sealcoat your driveway.
Here's why that driveway sealer project shouldn't be at the bottom of your to-do list.
For new homeowners who aren't familiar, sealcoat (or pavement sealer) is a liquid coating mixture that's usually applied to asphalt-based pavement. When moving into your new house, fixing the driveway might not be high on your list of priorities. In fact, you might even be asking yourself: Is sealcoating really necessary for my home?
If you’ve made an investment by purchasing a house, you want to take great care of it, right? You spend hours picking the perfect colors to match your sheets, and every Sunday you bring out the vacuum to suck dirt and debris. You might even spend money trimming your trees and bushes to keep them looking lovely.
When you think about it, your driveway takes up much of your front yard. A cracked, dirty, and faded driveway just doesn’t match with clean, polished cars. Here are some reasons why you should invest in a sealcoat for your driveway.
1. Maintain its Appearance
Your driveway takes up space. It’s where cars are parked and where children play during the sweltering summer months. If it isn’t well-maintained, it can have a detrimental effect on your house’s appearance. Asphalt driveways are prone to cracking, fading, and other signs of distress. It doesn’t look good to anyone! Cracks in the asphalt can even lead to accidents.
A sealcoat sits on top of a driveway and acts as a barrier for it. Its deep black color looks regal and strong. The coat prevents water, car fluids, water, the sun, salt, and other chemicals from warping the color or eating away at the driveway. And a sealcoat will prevent weeds from growing in the asphalt. That means no more getting down on hands and knees just to clean those irritating weeds!
New sealcoat, when applied, looks bold and dark. It improves the appearance of both new and old asphalt, adding a pop of vibrancy to your house that you may not have expected.
2. Prevent Cracks
Sometimes, your new home comes with cracks in the pavement. You might be inclined to think, “Well, the previous owner seemed just fine with these cracks. The driveway looks good enough.” Don’t settle for mediocrity—you deserve the best!
Water that seeps into the base material can cause small cracks to widen. Sealcoating your driveway properly will prevent that. Any minor cracks and rough patches can be smoothed over, and if there's any dirt on your driveway, the rain can easily wash it away. That's because sealcoat is a non-porous, smooth surface.
3. Protect the Asphalt
The sun can burn our skin, but did you know it can also harm your driveway? Surface voids on asphalt can absorb oxygen and UV rays. The radiation from the sun can warp the asphalt and cause the color to fade quickly. On top of that, pockets of surface void allow oil or gas to penetrate.
Chemical spills can also worsen your driveway's condition. With a thick layer of sealcoat, you'll be able to prevent (or at the very least, minimize) the harmful effects of spills and the sun. By lowering the rate of water absorption (the water will run right off), sealcoating minimizes the risks of damage due to water, snow, and freezing. There are many things that can destroy your driveway: gas, diesel fuel, salt, chemicals, oil, and ice. It's better to prevent these from attacking your driveway so that you won't have to risk costly damage control.
4. It's Strong
Sealcoat helps attract heat from sunlight and becomes more pliable when hot. Instead of the asphalt cracking at high temperatures, the sealcoat will mold to shape. If you have guests over, the asphalt won’t waver under the combined weight of the cars. That’s because the sealcoat will be there to protect it.
5. It Saves Money
Sealcoating can be done as a weekend DIY project, or you can hire someone to do it for you. A DIY sealcoat project should cost about $50 to $200. It all depends on the size of your driveway. On the other hand, hiring a professional is probably safer. It would cost about $200 to $500. If you choose to hire a company or a person, you can be assured that they'll be more familiar with good products. Different products work better in certain areas (because of the temperature and climate), and a professional will know which sealants are best avoided.
Whether you choose to do it yourself or hire someone else, sealcoating your driveway is far cheaper than spending hundreds of dollars trying to repair or even replace your driveway's asphalt!
If you allow moisture to seep into the driveway, you might not notice at first. But after weeks, the quickened deterioration will begin to show as your asphalt becomes more and more distressed. It’s much easier to prevent the issues instead of scrambling to find someone who can quickly fix the asphalt! Just make sure that you wait 90 days after setting a new asphalt driveway to apply the sealcoat.
Pavement cracks need to be filled and/or sealed to prevent water from entering sub-grade layers. Special rubberized materials are applied to the cracks, which seals the pavement and helps to prolong its life.
Application of pavement crack treatments consist of three basic steps:
Cleaning the cracks
Cutting the reservoir if needed
Installing the material
Sealing treatments are used for pavements that primarly have working cracks greater than 1/8 inch. Sealing treatments consist of creating a widened reservoir to provide proper geometry and placement of flexible material that can accommodate the expected movements.
- Sealcoating, crack sealing, striping and pavement repair. We do it all.
- Filling Asphalt Cracks in your asphalt driveway or parking lot surface will be a very important part of extending the life of your asphalt surface.
- The forces of nature do their best to break down the surface, creating cracks and potholes, which decreases the life of your driveway or parking lot. We specialize in maintenance and repair to help you extend the life of your asphalt.
Call Vaca Vet Striping at 707-592-8331 for an estimate
Most property managers have facilities maintenance checklists for the interior and exterior of their buildings including the landscaping and parking lots. On a regular basis, the items on these checklists are reviewed; repairs are noted and performed to keep the property in pristine condition. In this article, we'll focus on the items on those checklists that refer to the upkeep of a facilities parking lot.
Asphalt Pavement Checklist
1) Asphalt Sealing
Why should I sealcoat my asphalt?
Sealcoating asphalt pavement protects the surface of a parking lot from oxidation and damage from oil, gas, and salt. It also minimizes the need for asphalt repairs by weatherizing the surface which helps prevent water from being able to seep into cracks. If not properly sealed, pavement starts to unravel and potholes form.
After installation, asphalt should be sealed between six months and a year and then approximately every two years after depending on weather conditions, traffic patterns, and wear and tear.
2) Crack Filling
What should be done about cracks in your asphalt?
Each year, your parking lot should be inspected for asphalt cracks. Sealing cracks in asphalt prevents moisture from degrading the structural components of the surface. For asphalt cracks that are smaller than a quarter of an inch wide, sealcoat can be used. However, cracks that exceed these dimensions will require your paving contractor to apply a crack sealer.
To perform this necessary maintenance, the crack should be cleaned of all debris, including loose asphalt, vegetation, and other foreign objects. Once the crack sealer is applied and has set, the pavement should be properly sealcoated for ultimate protection.
3) Pothole Repair
Why do potholes form?
Potholes occur when water permeates asphalt pavement through a crack in the surface. Combined with wear and tear, the soil beneath the crack will soften, and eventually create a depression. Over time, the asphalt will unravel and break down into its sub-particles - gravel, sand, and stones.
In northern states, asphalt patches applied in winter months typically do not hold up as well as potholes repairs that were made during warmer months. Due to the mild temperatures in Florida, pothole repairs can be completed almost year-round.
4) Asphalt Pavement Replacement
When should I replace asphalt pavement?
Often it's difficult for someone without years of asphalt pavement experience to determine just by looking at a parking lot whether it can be repaired or, due to the cost of repairs, it is a better financial decision to replace it entirely. That's where the professionals come into play.
Over time, even a parking lot that has been well-maintained over the years will eventually deteriorate and need replacement. Asphalt experts will analyze the entire paved area for the current conditions. A few other factors that need consideration are drainage, traffic load and any issues caused by landscape - such as a large tree with roots wreaking havoc under a pavements surface.
Whether you manage a property for an individual or a corporation, your performance will be judged on many factors. Many of these factors depend on the type of property you manage, but one element transcends all property types: Are you helping the owner maximize profits by protecting the property’s assets? Although these assets vary, virtually all commercial properties have a parking lot that represents a significant investment. If you are not ensuring timely asphalt crack repairs for your asphalt parking lot, you could be jeopardizing that investment.
Why Asphalt Crack Repair Can Benefit Property Managers
How Does Crack Repair Help Protect an Investment in Asphalt Pavement?
Contractors build an asphalt pavement by constructing and compacting a stable foundation to support the weight of the pavement as well as the traffic that the roadway will bear. The foundation is a critical part of the pavement’s longevity. If the foundation becomes unstable, voids can develop that allow the pavement to subside. These voids can lead to the formation of potholes, large cracks, and alligator cracking. The leading cause of an unstable foundation is damage from water that leaked through cracks in the pavement. In most instances, an economical asphalt crack repair can prevent water penetration, averting costlier repairs and the premature demise of the pavement.
How Do Contractors Repair Cracks in Asphalt Pavement?
There are two basic methods that asphalt contractors can use to repair cracks. The method chosen depends on the nature of the crack. Both methods require the contractor to clean out the crack before introducing the repair material.
• Asphalt crack filling is the introduction of a fill material into the crack. Asphalt crack filler is somewhat rigid, so it is typically used for inactive cracks that will not continue to grow. Most block cracks and edge cracks are inactive, making them good candidates for asphalt crack filling. Some longitudinal cracks are also inactive, but most contractors prefer to use asphalt crack sealing for all longitudinal cracks.
• Asphalt crack sealing is often used for cracks that are less than an inch wide. As the name implies, this method seals the crack, preventing water and dirt from entering. Crack sealants are preferable for active cracks. Active cracks will continue to expand, but sealants are flexible enough to move with the pavement without breaking their bond. As a general rule, all transverse cracks will require sealing rather than filling. Some longitudinal, cold-joint and reflective cracks will also require the use of a sealant rather than an asphalt crack filler.
When Should Cracks Be Repaired?
Once a crack develops, you want to repair it as soon as possible. The problem is that you cannot restore a crack if you do not know it exists. A thorough visual inspection of your pavement every few months can help you identify issues, but you might want to consider asking your contractor whether he offers an asphalt maintenance program. Choose a program that provides a professional inspection at least once a year; it would be better to have an inspection in the spring and another one in the fall. The following tips can also help you protect your asphalt pavement.
• Hire a professional to apply sealant periodically. Sealcoating offers excellent protection against the sun and automotive fluids, but it is not a permanent treatment.
• Keep drains clean so that they can carry runoff safely away from your pavement. A clogged drain can force water underneath the surrounding pavement, leading to cracks and foundation damage.
• Keep your pavement clean. Remove trash, dead leaves, grass clippings, and other debris. Clean oil and other automotive fluids that may have leaked onto the pavement; they can soften your asphalt pavement, leaving it more vulnerable to damage.
Asphalt is among the most popular commercial paving materials used today due to its water-resistance, flexibility, aesthetic appeal, and excellent adhesive abilities. All of these properties and more make asphalt pavement an asset that requires a structured level of preservation and care. Otherwise, it is prone to fading, damage, instability, and various other negative implications. With proper preventative maintenance, asphalt pavements can remain beautiful and functional for years. Not only is this ideal for investment purposes, but for liability as well. If you are an involved property owner, continue reading to learn the best methods for asphalt maintenance and care.
Although pavement maintenance agendas will differ from property to property, the overall purpose of asphalt maintenance is to sustain its appeal and extend its life. Some paving maintenance tasks can be managed on your own or by an appointed staff, such as inspections and trash clearance; while others are best left in the hands of trained and equipped professionals. An ideal pavement maintenance should include basic tasks like regular assessments, sweeping, crack filling, pothole repair, periodic line striping, and most importantly, seal coating. Without a proper sealcoat, asphalt pavements will experience heightened wear and tear from traffic, weather, chemicals, salts, and more, which shortens their life and diminishes their aesthetic value.
Asphalt Seal Coating
Seal coats are emulsions that are brushed or sprayed onto pavements, providing a clear protective layer against moisture and the above-mentioned threats. There are several types of commercial sealcoats available on the market, but the most popular versions include fog seal, slurry seal, and chip seal emulsions. Some sealcoat products are water-based, which are easier and safer to spread. But there are also waterless versions that use organic or plant-based oils or hydrocarbon solvents instead.
Choosing to Seal Coat
If your asphalt pavement is old and in poor condition, it will not likely benefit from a new layer of seal coat. In some cases, it is more cost-effective to repair or replace deteriorated asphalt pavements instead. However, if your asphalt is in good condition, a periodic re-sealing can be a highly-beneficial maintenance decision. Talk to your trusted paving contractor for a professional recommendation of your asphalt's maintenance and sealcoating schedule. They will know exactly what your property needs and at what intervals. The cost of having your asphalt seal-coated will depend on several factors, such as the square footage, the condition of pavement, and any additional surface applications needed.