Seal coating asphalt driveways, parking garages, and other paved surfaces are the process of applying a liquid substance over an underlying asphalt pavement to cover the surface and cover small holes and cracks for weather protection. By repairing surface damage and establishing a protective layer to keep out damaging UV rays, vehicle fluids, and water, seal coating protects and extends the life of asphalt pavement. Sealcoating covers surface gaps, reducing oxygen and UV ray exposure while limiting the depth to which oil or gas can infiltrate the asphalt. It works as a waterproofing agent, reducing the rate at which water penetrates your driveway or parking lot’s asphalt.
Finish the repairs, allow time for curing, then clean before sealing, just as you would with concrete. If you use too much sealer, it might cause peeling, flaking, and cracking. Sealcoating should be renewed every two years, according to industry standards, to enable sealer on your driveway to wear away before resealing.
The optimal time of year to seal coat your driveway is between May and October. However, you should check the weather forecast to ensure that it will not rain while the driveway is installed. For a minimum of 12 hours, do not touch or drive on the seal-covered driveway.
If you’re considering upgrading from a gravel driveway to something more permanent, these are the benefits and drawbacks to consider when sealing an asphalt driveway.
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Pros of Sealing Asphalt Driveway:
Let’s take a look at the pros of sealing asphalt driveway:
Rain, snow, and water overflow are all protected by seal coating your driveway. Water damage is a prevalent cause of asphalt driveway deterioration. The earth beneath your driveway erodes as water seeps through cracks and pavement. Asphalt seal coating fills in minor gaps and protects your driveway from water damage.
2) Prevention from Potholes Formation:
When you seal asphalt, you’re essentially building a protective barrier against the flaws that are discovered in the material after it’s been poured to form your driveway. It’s similar to the procedure of sealing a kitchen countertop. The ingredients infiltrate into the air pockets left behind by the job, resulting in a more robust surface. This procedure allows for the prevention of catastrophic damage before it occurs, protecting your automobiles while also preventing accidents.
3) Protection Against the Sun:
UV rays may age and destroy your driveway in the same way they age and damage your skin. Oxidation is caused by the sun’s rays, which leads to driveway deterioration. Sealcoating functions as a sunscreen by shielding aging asphalt from damaging UV radiation.
4) Moisture Run-off is Efficient:
When you build a sealant-coated asphalt driveway, you’re creating a surface that allows for efficient water run-off when moisture falls on it. You’ll also notice that this product has some self-healing properties because the sun can help to put the broken coating or surface back together as it “melts.” This grade provides additional resistance to distortion and flexing, lowering the risk of cracks occurring in your driveway.
Sealcoat is a black material that heats up when exposed to light. It helps asphalt driveways last longer. Sealcoat is more flexible when heated because it becomes more pliant and reduces the likelihood of cracks in your driveway because the seal coat can endure traffic and wear and tear.
Asphalt is expensive, and prices are subject to fluctuation based on crude oil prices. Sealcoating, on the other hand, is far less costly than replacing asphalt. Sealcoating your driveway could save you hundreds of dollars if the damage isn’t too severe.
7) Maintenance is Easy:
Sealcoating is not only cost-effective but also makes cleaning and upkeep easier by smoothing out the surface of your driveway. Broom is used to sweeping seal-coated driveways fast. You may also wash them without worrying about water seeping into cracks and causing your driveway to deteriorate.
The driveway plays a significant impact on the physical appearance of your home. It’s one of the first things people notice. It is said, the first impression is the last one. When opposed to asphalt, seal coating appears to be clean and well-kept. Line markings can also be easily painted onto seal coating, making it ideal for parking spots.
Cons of Asphalt Driveway Sealing:
Here are the cons of asphalt driveway sealing:
1) The Cost of Sealing the Driveway is not Cheap:
Although having your asphalt driveway sealed will cost more than if you choose to forego doing. And the money you spend now will save you an equal or more incredible amount in repair expenditures down the line.
2) Maintenance is a Repetitive Task:
To get the perfect asphalt driveway, you should seal it once every three years. The repeated coats applied to the surface aren’t as expensive as the initial layer, but they are still an investment that must be factored into your budget.
3) Specific Weather Conditions are Required:
When sealing an asphalt driveway, you must be cautious of the weather conditions. Even though it is a three-season product in most of the United States, you should not use it after the season’s first frost. The cooler temperatures will harm the sealer’s performance. When there is a risk of sub-freezing conditions during cement production, it is not uncommon for a sealer to fail. If you use an all-seasons, four-season, or cold-weather formula for your asphalt sealant, you can avoid this disadvantage. Still, this product is usually more expensive than the conventional product.
4) Time Required for Better Results:
Before you begin this maintenance task, you must wait for a newly constructed asphalt driveway to cure appropriately. Most driveways require at least six months of drying time before they are suitable for sealing. After that, you must consider the temperature of your driveway before going. Most sealants also require at least 24 hours of drying time before each layer is placed to the driveway, ensuring that the minimum temperature requirement is met throughout the project. If your desired product requires you to wait 72 hours between each coat of sealant you apply, this can be challenging.
5) It Demands Frequent Cleaning:
When you apply a layer of sealant to an asphalt driveway, you’re forming a barrier between the surface and the debris, which could compromise the installation. When interacting with it, use caution because pressure washing with certain solvents or detergents might cause the sealant to wear out prematurely.