Asphalt Driveway Repair Tips for Homeowners
Asphalt, also known as blacktop, is not only a durable substance to use for a driveway, but it has some advantages over other options like concrete and parking pads. Concrete, for example, is not terribly malleable once it hardens, which can be problematic if the earth moves, if it is hit by hard objects, or if cracks form and water gets inside and freezes. Asphalt, on the other hand, is somewhat more elastic and therefore better equipped to handle cold weather and falling objects. And while your gravel, brick, or grass parking pad can shift and settle over time, asphalt will hold together for years to come. Of course, asphalt isn’t without potential flaws – it can crack and chip over time and tends to get a little soft in extreme heat. But one major upside is that asphalt is exceedingly easy to repair, and patching it is a lot cheaper than replacement. Here are just a few tips for the DIY homeowners interested in repairing their asphalt driveway.
The first thing you should know is that speedy repairs will save you a lot of time and trouble. Generally speaking, there are three main issues you can face when it comes to your asphalt driveway: cracks, pot holes, and sink holes. Uneven ground or settling can cause sink holes to form, sink holes can cause cracks, and untreated cracks can cause pot holes. If you get to the pot hole stage or you have severe sink holes or cracks, chances are you’ll have to resurface your drive. But if you pay attention you should be able to spot such issues before they get out of hand. And this allows for simple repairs that should nip such problems in the bud.
In order to complete repair work, you’ll first need to undergo some prep. This starts with cleaning your driveway. In some cases, a simple sweeping with a stiff-bristled broom will do the trick, but you could also use a leaf blower if you have one. And you may want to rinse the area or even pull out all the stops with a pressure washer. Just make sure that you allow the drive to dry completely before you start the repair process. From there you need to purchase the right tools and materials for the job you’re dealing with.
If you have sink holes or pot holes, a patch is usually recommended, and this involves pouring asphalt in the hole, bonding it to the existing asphalt, and sealing over it. If you’re dealing with a pothole that is large enough to reveal the surface material below (i.e. dirt, gravel, etc.) you may have to pour in some gravel first to level the area. And you might opt to do the same to a sink hole, supposing you first cut out the area that is sunken. As for cracks, they are easy enough to seal with patch material, as well. All you have to do is pour it over cracks, smooth it out, and let it dry. An asphalt driveway is exceedingly easy to maintain so long as you stay on top of repairs, and it can last for many years when homeowners exercise due diligence. Plus, you can always call in the pros from Brite Line Asphalt Maintenance Inc. if you’re not so good with the DIY stuff. The main thing is to address any problems you find before they turn into major issues.