One of the most important things you can do to prolong the life of your asphalt driveway is to keep water from seeping underneath it. This is because water causes the soil to shift, which causes cracks and potholes to form. Here are a few maintenance tips for protecting your driveway from water damage.
Ensure Proper Drainage
The next time it rains, check your driveway for standing water. Your driveway should have been built on a grade, so water rolls off it. However, if you've installed plants along the side, or added some sort of border, the water may not be able to drain away. If changing your landscaping does not allow the water to fully drain, then you may want to call in an asphalt contractor to install a drain, or raise a sunken part of your drive, so you can put an end to standing water that will seep into your driveway and cause problems over time.
You should fill cracks when you first find them, while they are still small and easy to do by yourself. It's as easy as buying crack filler at a home improvement store and injecting it into the crack. Once the cracks get big, or if you have a lot of them along with crumbling, they are more difficult to repair. In that case, you may need to hire a contractor to do the job. Also, when you fill cracks when they're small, the repair work is nearly invisible. If you wait until the cracks are big, the filler will be very noticeable since it is a different color from your faded asphalt. It's important to fill cracks, so water doesn't flow through them into the soil below your driveway, as this will lead to more complicated and costly repairs.
A sealcoat is a protective layer applied to your driveway. It repels rain, and protects from UV damage too. Sealcoating also restores the color of your driveway and covers up crack filler repairs. If you have a short driveway, you can apply the sealer yourself in the same way you would apply paint by rolling it on. Before you apply it, you have to clean and repair the asphalt first. If your driveway is very long, the job may be too much to do as a DIY project. A contractor can do it much quicker using commercial spraying equipment.
Other types of routine asphalt maintenance you can do to protect your driveway include keeping rocks and other debris swept off, so the weight of a car doesn't cause them to chip the surface, and regular monitoring for signs of wear and tear you can repair right away. By keeping up with maintenance, your driveway will not only last longer, it will look much better, too. Contact an asphalt maintenance company like Curtis Clean Sweep for more information.