Top Tip for 2009, Maintenance

March 31st, 2009 by Douglas

With the economy in trouble, and everyone wanting to save a little money, it is time to emphasise a maintenance schedule instead of letting your asphalt go.

Asphalt, as a popular surface for roads and driveways, has many enemies. The rain erodes the stone, the ice helps crack it open, and the snow leads to the use of chemicals that can tear your driveway apart. The sun and wind also add to these problems.

There IS a solution.

Start a maintenance schedule to protect your driveway. The first six months to a year is needed for your new asphalt driveway to properly cure, afterwards you should start a driveway sealing ritual. The time-frame needed between coats really depends upon the quality of the sealer, and the quality of the work. In general, every 2-4 years.

By saying this, I know I will upset some of the more shady contractors, but a yearly regime is NOTbest. Yearly applications will lead to troubles down the road, including: Peeling, chipping, and surface cracking. Most contractors try to sell you on a yearly schedule simply because they rely on the yearly work, and quite a few will give you a really thin, watered down, coat to emphasise this. Any honest contractor builds his business around a 3 year schedule.

If you absolutely cannot afford to implement a maintenance schedule, the most important coat that you can apply is the first. This first coat fills any pores left from the paving process and keeps them from forming cracks in the future.

In the case that your asphalt is in really bad shape, but you cannot afford to have it paved this year, I would advise you to just leave it alone. Sealing your driveway when it is in bad shape will not add any benefit besides a cosmetic one. A coat of driveway sealer on a driveway in bad shape will take a lot of extra material as well. Save any money for the paving job instead.

A maintenance schedule for your asphalt driveway can save you much more money in the long run. It is much cheaper to protect your investment now, than to pay to have it all done over again later.

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