Does Asphalt Maintenance Change in The Winter?
If you have an asphalt driveway or parking lot, it is important to understand about its regular maintenance. You don’t want the money you spent on asphalt laying and paving to go to waste. And the first thing that you need to know is that each time the weather or season change, there is a significant effect to the asphalt.
Asphalt is exposed to various elements such as wind, rain, hail, snow, even fallen leaves. All of these have long-term damaging effects. Thus, it is important to keep your asphalt properly maintained, regardless of the season or weather. And if you are wondering whether asphalt maintenance change when the weather or season change, the answer is yes. More so during spring, fall, and winter. Going from hot weather into cold makes the asphalt expand and contract, which could cause damage and result to internal and external cracks on the asphalt.
So, before winter comes, it is better to put an asphalt maintenance plan in action. And solid plan doesn’t include using de-icing agents or dumping salt on the surface. These can help prevent ice formations and car accidents, but they have negative effects on your asphalt.
What to Do to Prepare Your Asphalt for Winter?
Your asphalt maintenance plan for winter should start during the fall, just before the cold temperatures set in. Inspect the asphalt for any signs of cracks. Makes sure to fill these cracks, no matter how small they are. Small cracks can become bigger problems when neglected. They will allow water and other elements to enter the foundation and cause corrosion. Consider adding seal coating to the asphalt.
When the snow starts falling, be sure to remove them promptly. It is advisable to use plastic shovel to avoid damaging the asphalt surface. And when you decide to use de-icing agent, make sure to use environmentally friendly and chemical-free products. Potassium chloride is among the safe de-icing agent that you can use.
Regular Asphalt Maintenance
The winter is not the only time you need to check on your asphalt. This is an investment that you should take care of, year after year. Regular and proper asphalt maintenance will ensure that your driveway or private road will have longer lifespan.
First, make it a habit to conduct visual inspections regularly. Inspect the surface and edges of the asphalt so you can easily address any minor repairs necessary. Addressing even the smallest imperfections in the asphalt will save you from a lot of problems and expenses later.
Make sure to repair and fill any crack on your asphalt driveway or walkway. These cracks can wreak havoc to the structural integrity of your asphalt. Any hairline fractures or cracks on the asphalt pavement should be remedied with asphalt sealer. Large cracks and potholes need to be cleaned before filling and sealing them.
When applying asphalt seal, it is imperative that you use high quality ones. A good seal coating will ensure the asphalt’s integrity for many years. If you live in an area with heavy rains, frequent freezing and thawing cycles, seal coating will save you a great deal. If your asphalt is newly installed, it should completely cure before you can apply a seal coat.
Asphalt is an oil-based material and thus, gasoline and oil spills will dissolve its surface when not prevented. Therefore, it is important to avoid any spills or leakage from happening. Minimize potential damage by promptly cleaning them up.
Parking Lot Maintenance
For asphalt parking lots, maintenance is on a bigger scale than say your driveway or walkway. With regular vehicle traffic coming in and out of the parking area, deterioration is bound to set in early. So, even before the curing of the asphalt paving or overlay is finished, you must plan for sealcoating.
You can never underestimate the power of having properly sealed asphalt parking lot. This prolongs and protects the asphalt for longer lifespan as it fills any hairline damage keep harmful UV rays, water, and vehicle fluids from seeping into the pavement’s foundation. Experts advise that you should apply regular sealcoating every 3-5 years.
Potholes are bound to happen not just because of the weather but also because of the vehicles going in and out of the parking lot. And since it’s an open space, heavy rains will also cause damage to it. Make sure to repair the potholes even when they are small to prevent further damage.
Cleaning your asphalt parking lot regularly is another way to prevent damage to it. Set aside at least one day each month for general cleaning. Make sure to clear away debris including fallen leaves and garbage. If you see fuel or oil stains, clean them immediately using chemical-free degreasing agent.
The good news is that, if you live in Florida, you don’t have to worry about extreme winter or freezing days. Still, mild winter or not, you need to pay attention to the maintenance of your asphalt. Here at Anderson & Sons Asphalt, we will take the burden of asphalt maintenance off your hands. Our team would be happy to take care of your asphalt driveway or parking lot for you – whether it’s summer, spring, fall, or winter.