Asphalt is a durable and lovely choice for your home's driveway, but the results of weathering can lead to damage. Fortunately, with help from our experts on paving and sealcoating in Bandera, TX, most weathering issues are avoidable or repairable if you notice them early enough.
Poor drainage is one of the most standard causes of weathering damage on asphalt. Water that pools on the surface can absorb slowly in time. If that moisture seeps into pavement pores and then freezes, the expansion of the dampness then leads to cracks or potholes.
Your driveway may require drainage installation if water pools on the surface. First, an asphalt contractor will determine the best location for a drain. Then, they can cut into the asphalt and install a drainage port or trough, which will go to the nearest storm drain or gutter.
UV light breaks down the bond in the asphalt. This causes the petroleum-based binder to shrink, breaking the aggregate free from the asphalt mix. The result is loose gravel and a rough surface on your driveway.
A seal coat is the best way to protect your asphalt from UV damage. Seal coats are paint-on sealers that contain a slurry of tar and sealants. Apply the first coat within three to six months of initial asphalt paving. Then, reapply it every two to four years, as UV exposure and moisture will eventually wear down the protective coating.
Minor weathering damages can occur, even with proper care. Small cracks and pits, which will eventually develop into large ones, are the most likely forms of damage. These occur due to exposure to UV light, temperature extremes, and moisture.
When damage does occur, act quickly to schedule the proper repair. Fill and seal small cracks so that they don't become large cracks. Fill divots, chips, and potholes with a hot asphalt mix, which bonds to the existing asphalt to create a durable and long-lasting patch. Seal coating over these repairs will help blend the patches, so they aren't as visible.
Hot asphalt, even older asphalt, will soften in response to the higher temperatures. This means your asphalt will often have a softer surface in response to hot and sunny weather. Heavy items on a driveway, like a jack on a trailer or a motorcycle kickstand, can leave divots or depressions in the driveway. Water can then collect in the divot and lead to future potholes.
You can easily avoid depressions — distribute the weight, so it isn't focused on a small area. A board beneath a jack stand or kickstand works well. If a divot forms, your asphalt contractor can patch and level the paving, so it doesn't develop into a pothole in the future. Also, pull into the driveway in a slightly different path each time, particularly in hot weather, so tire depressions don't form on the paving.
These are great ways to prevent asphalt weathering issues. Contact our experts on paving and sealcoating in Bandera, TX, if you need help with your asphalt driveway.