Ultraviolet rays from the sun are not only bad for your skin, but they will cause your driveway to break down over time. The asphalt will become brittle, causing cracks and potholes that will start to grow bigger if they are ignored. Thankfully, these problems can be repaired before they reach the point of no return, which requires your asphalt driveway to need resurfacing.
Repairing small cracks in your driveway is possible. It starts with removing all the organic material that is growing in the crack. This can be done using a rake or hoe to remove the stubborn weeds. Then clean the crack using a broom to sweep away the dirt and debris. A pressure washer can also be used. A rubberized compound is then used to fill the crack. Once it dries, you can drive over the crack once again.
It's possible that erosion has caused the edges of a pothole to become undercut. You will need to use a sledgehammer and chisel to remove these overhangs so that the edges are flush all the way around it. Once again, all organic material will need to be removed and the pothole cleaned.
A patching compound is used to slowly fill the pothole with a couple inches of the material, and then the compound will need to be tamped down. The process will need to be repeated until the entire hole is filled to the top with compressed patching compound. To further compact the compound, an additional heap of the material is placed on top of the hole, and a wooden board is placed on top of it. It can be rolled over by a car until the board lies completely flat with the asphalt. Without proper compaction, a pothole is not truly repaired.
Protect Repairs With Sealants
Repairing the potholes and cracks is a crucial first step, but it will not provide your asphalt driveway with long-term protection. Consider having a sealcoat applied, which is essentially like sunscreen for your driveway. It absorbs the sun's UV rays, so the asphalt underneath is unaffected.
By taking care of your driveway, you will help get many more years out of it before it eventually needs replacement. That is why it is so important to repair potholes and cracks when they form, and apply a sealcoat when finished. If you need help doing any of these things, contact an asphalt paving company in your area.
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