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How to Prolong the Life of an Asphalt Driveway

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An asphalt driveway in good condition can certainly add a lot of character to your home, and contribute to its value. Yet you will need to pay attention to its condition as time goes by, especially due to the harsh and prevailing weather conditions. If it's been some time since you took any action here, what should you do?

Early Days

When you first install a new asphalt driveway, it should remain in perfectly good condition for several months. Indeed, it will take some time to 'bed-in', and as it does, you should not try to add any additional substance to the surface.

Periodic Sealant

However, it's a good idea to coat the surface with a special liquid sealant after a couple of years, as it will help to protect its integrity and fill in any cracks that may have appeared. These cracks may seem quite innocuous and may not stand out as such, but they will eventually develop and could compromise the foundation of the structure.

Spreading Trouble

As time goes by, however, you may notice an increase in the number of shallow cracks and may need to patch some areas. If this has become a regular occurrence, then you need to move onto the next stage and resurface the driveway in its entirety. This is the preferred option if the cracks are relatively narrow or less than a centimetre in depth and if the trouble has not spread over the entire area.

Time to Take Action

Don't overlook this job, as the entire driveway has now become susceptible to degradation caused by weather and usage. It may appear to be in reasonable condition and to be perfectly usable, but water will have penetrated those cracks and damage will have developed underneath.

Impact of Resurfacing

If you resurface the driveway at this stage, however, you will certainly be able to get several more good years out of the structure. The cost is relatively low in relation to a complete re-pavement, which is something that you may need to consider otherwise if the asphalt itself begins to crumble.

Getting Expert Opinion

Talk with your asphalt resurfacing contractor to go through the various options. They will tell you whether you should seal-coat the asphalt or resurface it based on its current condition. Crucially, they will be able to tell you if the foundation is still structurally sound and give you guidance to help you plan for the future.