The better care you take of your asphalt driveway, the longer it will serve you. With proper maintenance, it can stay in good shape for over 20 years. Here are some tips to help you look after your asphalt driveway in a way that prolongs its lifespan.
Have proper drainage
Standing water will damage the asphalt, so adequate drainage should be planned at the time of building the driveway. Sloping your driveway in a way that allows the water to wash out into the street is an easy and effective drainage method, but it's not always possible. In some cases, you may need to install trench drains and check them regularly to ensure they don't become clogged.
Fill cracks as soon as possible
A small crack will expand over time as water gets into it and creates more damage. Cracks make it possible for seeds of weeds to get into the asphalt. As the roots start growing, they push the asphalt and create larger gaps. Cracks are also an opportunity for ants to get in and establish a colony in your pavement. That's why it's important to inspect the asphalt regularly and fill all cracks.
You can easily fix the smaller cracks yourself using asphalt crack filler, which can be purchased from a hardware store. For the larger cracks or if you're not sure what to do, it's worth contacting asphalt repair professionals.
Apply regular sealing
Oxidation from contact with the air and UV rays make the asphalt more susceptible to cracks and damage. A new sealcoat every few years will prevent oxidation and protect your asphalt from UV rays. Before re-sealing your driveway, clean out weeds, patch holes and fill cracks. Check the weather forecast and choose dry, sunny weather to book the sealing so that the sealer has enough time to set.
Avoid parking your car in the same spot
If you regularly park your car in the driveway, vary your parking spot, even if it's only by a little bit. Applying weight consistently in the same spot can cause depressions in the asphalt, which then fill with water when it rains.
Check your car for oil leaks
Leaking oil creates unsightly stains, but it's not just an aesthetic concern. The oil will penetrate the asphalt and weaken it, making it more susceptible to damage from the weather elements. Proper sealing will slow down the penetration of the oil, but it's still best to avoid oil leaks and if they occur, clean them quickly.