Asphalt Driveway Repairing 101

Every road leads to your driveway. And asphalt is one of the most common materials used to build them. But without proper maintenance a driveway can quickly fall into disrepair. Use this asphalt driveway repair guide when your driveway needs more than just maintenance.

Daily Inspection
Every day you drive your car or walk to the mailbox, do a visual inspection of the driveway. Ask yourself these questions: Are there any cracks, brittle edges or loose gravel? These are all signs that an asphalt pavement may be in need of repair.

Cracks and Brittle Edges
Cracks may be repaired a few different ways. Small cracks can be fixed using an asphalt emulsified caulk; however the fix is very temporary. The debris should be swept from the crack using a compressed air nozzle. Large cracks can be repaired using a Diteq asphalt cutting blade. Simply cut down into the aggregate throughout the length of the crack and replace it with asphalt mix, pounding it tight using an asphalt tamper.

Brittle edges need to be cut out at least two feet in width, the length of the damaged edge. Remove the substrate down to the bare soil and compact using an asphalt tamp. Next, replace and compact the aggregate substrate followed by a layer of hot asphalt mix. Using a Marshalltown asphalt lute, spread the asphalt mix evenly across the surface in three four inch layers and tamp. Repeat until the surface is flush with the existing driveway.

Applying Blacktop
A sealcoat is a cost effective method used to resurface asphalt. A surface layer of blacktop not only brings the dark color back to your driveway, making it look brand new, but it also helps to soften brittle and aging asphalt, allowing it to reconnect and bond with the underlying substrate and prevent future cracking and peeling.

Consider purchasing a quality Northstar sealcoating machine if you own a long asphalt driveway. It will pay for itself in no time at all by extending the life of your driveway for years to come.

Slurry Sealing
When peeling and cracking become too much for the home owner to repair, a professional asphalt contractor can apply a slurry seal to extend the driveway’s lifespan without repaving. A mix of fine aggregates, asphalt emissions and water is then applied to the surface following a tack coat of wet asphalt. Once rolled flat, it will last for years and is a cost effective alternative to driveway replacement.