One of the best attributes of an asphalt surface is how little maintenance and routine care is needed over its lifetime, but no driveway is truly maintenance-free. In order to help maintain the life of your asphalt investment we are providing some recommendations.
Stay off driveway first 3 – 5 days (longer on really hot days) - Asphalt is pliable until it has hardened or fully cured, your asphalt needs to go through one full heat season before there is less risk of damage to its surface.
Driving Too Fast- This is the leading cause of driveway scarring. Drive slowly the first year, especially turning in tight spots.
Parking- Do not park your vehicles in the same spot. Your surface needs time to cure. Do not sit in one spot and turn power steering wheel this may cause power steering marks and ruts in pavement. This will look unsightly and cause unnecessary worry.
Avoid Impressions- Do no park motorcycles, bicycles, grills or other things where a kickstand or sharp edge can penetrate the surface. Use a kickstand pad when resting on asphalt. Place a piece of wood under each wheel and hitch to evenly distribute the weight on the asphalt surface of RV’s, Boats, Trailers, etc…
Sides of Driveway- Do not drive off edges with any vehicles, lawnmowers, etc … edges need time to set up. Install curbing/edging, topsoil and/or grass seeded flush to the asphalt surface immediately after installation. If this is not done in a timely manner the exposed edges may crack.
Heavy construction vehicles – Heavy vehicles will crack your asphalt. Commercial use surfaces require thicker depths and more frequent resurfacing.
Keep your surface clean - Debris, leaves, weeds and dead grass can accelerate deterioration. Sweep debris from surface. Pressure washing may help alleviate clogs. If soap suds appear do not be alarmed. This is a chemical reaction to the make-up of the liquid asphalt. Cleaning your driveway once a year is a great way to help it keep looking new.
Stains- Oil spots and gasoline spills should be cleaned immediately. They can stain and cause a “gummy” spot over time. Using Simple Green or Purple Power may help. Sealcoating is also designed to protect surface from stains.
DO NOT USE DIESEL FUEL- Diesel fuel spills will destroy asphalt. Diesel fuel breaks down the binders and will cause holes.
Appearance– It is normal for your asphalt to look smoother in some areas than others. Asphalt is made up of various sizes of stone, sand and aggregate which cause subtle texture differences in surface appearance. Also, areas that have been spread with hand tools may look different than those by machine.
Sealcoating– Seal coating is used to extend the life of old asphalt and protect it from spills, water, salt, weather and traffic wear. We suggest you wait 1-3 years before you seal coat for the first time, then every 2-5 years after that. Over-sealing can ruin your asphalt surface.
Cracks – Temperature changes causes the ground to expand and contract which can cause cracks. Call a professional to crack fill as soon as you notice an issue to prevent water damage and further deterioration.
Snow & Ice Removal– Salt products that melt ice will not hurt asphalt. They may stain the surface which pressure washing should resolve. Use a rubber tipped shovel or plow for removal snow. If using a plow on a vehicle, keep the blade 1 inch above the surface. All remaining snow will melt and drain through the surface.
Vollmer Tar & Chip, Inc. Asphalt Paving
27 Vollmer Rd., St Marys, PA 15857