Having your driveway resealed isn’t as big a job as, say, having your kitchen remodeled. But like any home improvement project, it helps to have as much information as possible early on.
That’s why we want to use this blog post to try to answer a few of the most common questions we get from homeowners about asphalt driveway sealcoating. Read on to learn the whys, hows and whens of resealing your driveway.
Why do I need to seal my driveway?
Asphalt has impressive waterproofing and adhesive capabilities, but it’s not indestructible. Its chemical make-up makes it easy for water, salt and other compounds to break down its molecular structure.
And as these molecules deteriorate, your pavement loses its binding and waterproofing abilities. You can see this happening whenever you see a stretch of highway that’s gone from black to grey.
Asphalt is produced through petroleum distillation, and so is also susceptible to deterioration caused by exposure to petroleum-based materials. When oil or gas leaks onto your driveway, they will cause the petroleum-based materials in your asphalt to break down.
What should I use to seal my driveway?
There are many different types of materials used to seal driveways, from coal tar emulsion to asphalt emulsion to acrylic.
We use coal tar emulsion sealcoat. It is not petroleum based and will resist damage from gas and oil as well as water and UV rays. It lasts two to three times longer than asphalt emulsion seal coat. It’s the only kind we offer due to its cost savings for our customers.
How does asphalt driveway sealcoating work?
Asphalt driveway sealcoating can keep all this from happening. It’s a preventive method for protecting your driveway from deterioration.
It works like this:
- The sealcoating team will clear your driveway by trimming overhanging grass. They’ll also clean the entire pavement, clearing away dirt, dust, and other debris. Successful sealcoating can only happen with a clean surface.
- Oil marks on the driveway are heat flashed to clear surface solvents. From there, we apply a single coat of oil spot primer to ensure a strong bond between the marked areas and the newly applied driveway sealant.
- If there are any cracks in the driveway larger than 3/8 of an inch, the team will clear them of dirt and debris and fill them with top quality hot tar crack sealant, followed by a coat of Black Beauty sand to promote adhesion to the sealing material.
- The sealing crew uses hot rubberized crack sealant to cover any chickenwire cracks. If your driveway has potholes, we can repair these at your request.
- We apply sealcoating using a brush. The sealcoating is a blended polymer pavement sealer mixed with a rubberized polymer epoxy latex that adds flexibility and gives the material a deep black color when it dries. Sealants also contain sand and silica for added durability and traction.
- Once sealcoating has been applied, you’ll need to leave it alone for 48 hours. And once it’s dried, treat it gently. Making sharp turns in the driveway can mark the surface. Only turn your cars wheels when the car is in motion.
How long will asphalt driveway sealcoating last?
An easy way to answer that question is “Typically two years.” That’s the industry standard. It lets the sealant wear away naturally before applying a new coat.
However, it’s important to weigh the different factors that can affect the life of your sealant, including exposure to sun and oil and the amount of traffic your driveway sees.
We’ve seen far too many homeowners let years or even decades pass before having their driveways resealed, which means we arrive to find a stretch of faded grey asphalt.
At the same time, we’ve also worked with people who were a little too vigilant in protecting their driveways, adding a new coat of sealant each year, which can cause it to flake and crack if it builds up.
Is your driveway showing signs of wear and tear? Has it been a few years since your last asphalt driveway sealcoating? Beckage Sealcoating can help.
We’ve spent more than two decades helping New Jersey homeowners keep their driveways looking their best. Contact us today to find out how we can help you.