Abbey's Sealcoating & Paving : Service, Quality, and Excellence

April 4, 2015

Spring Cleaning for your property’s asphalt

Filed under: Asphalt,Home,Paving,Sealcoating — Tags: , , , — Jeff Beckham @ 11:47 am

The spring season is almost upon us. For most individuals, this means an increased willingness to spend time outdoors. For others, this means doing plenty of “spring cleaning”. For you, the property owner, the spring season serves as a great time to evaluate the asphalt on your property’s parking lot or driveway, and give it a little spring cleaning of its own.

Subject to plenty of wear and tear, asphalt is very susceptible to damage during Chicago’s harsh winter months. This is due to “winter cracking”, which is caused by snow, ice, and extremely low temperatures. These start out as small cracks, which become larger when the ice melts. When water seeps through the cracks and freezes again, it makes the gaps even larger. In the worst cases, winter cracking can lead to the surface developing large, unsightly, dangerous potholes.

That’s why after a long bout with winter, it’s important to have the asphalt on your lot or driveway checked for damages that need to be addressed immediately. While there may no longer be any snow and ice to cause damages to asphalt pavements in spring, winter damage can still become worse if left unaddressed. Even the unseen cracks can increase the asphalt’s exposure to air and moisture, accelerating its oxidation, which wears it out faster.

By giving the asphalt on your property its own “spring cleaning”, you can better prolong its service life, and avoid the large costs and inconvenience associated with asphalt replacement or renovation. There are many ways to maintain your pavement, but these three are the most common, and are typically done one after the other:

  1. Cleaning. To best expose even the smallest cracks, the asphalt lot must be made free of dust and debris. Depending on the extent of cleaning required, this can involve the use of blowers and scrubs, as well as high pressure washers.
  2. Crack Filling. Once the cracks on the lot have been located, each is prepared to be filled out by going through heat lancing. This cleans, dries, and melts the walls within the cracks, making it ready to receive and adhere to the crack seal that will be used to fill the gap.
  3. Application of Sealcoating. After all cracks have been properly filled, seal coating will be applied to the asphalt. This layer of coat will substantially protect against oxidation and prevent water intrusion, as well as resist oil, salt, and chemical penetration.

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