Proper asphalt maintenance can help preserve your driveways and pavements all year, saving you money on constant repairs and ensuring your paved surfaces remain safe for use by both vehicles and pedestrians. Typically, cold weather can be particularly devastating to asphalt paving, as snow and ice can cause water seepage that could damage the foundation or expand cracks. To ensure your asphalt paving emerges undamaged from the next winter, here are a few preventative measures you can take.
Repair your asphalt surfaces in advance
The first step to winter maintenance for your asphalt paving is repairing any cracks or holes on the surface before the snow hits. If cracks aren't repaired in time, they can allow water to infiltrate the asphalt surface during winter, causing structural damage to the foundation. Cracks also trap water that freezes and expands, causing potholes to form.
For starters, be sure to give your asphalt paving a thorough cleaning before winter so as to identify any cracked areas. If there is any damage, call in an asphalt repair contractor so they can add crack fillers to the paving.
The pros essentially route out damaged patches of asphalt and clean the crack edges so that the filler material properly adheres to the surface. Paving contractors may also recommend adding a layer of waterproof sealant to the asphalt so as to prevent water seepage and improve the aesthetics of your paved surfaces.
Shovel snow often
During winter, do not allow ice and snow to sit on your asphalt paving for long periods of time, as this could result in water seeping into the surface. The constant freezing and thawing of ice could also crack the surface, necessitating costly repairs.
To be on the safe side, make it a practice to shovel ice and snow from your asphalt paving as soon as possible. Be sure to use a shovel with rubber blade edges, as sharp metal shovels will often snag on tiny cracks and cause them to expand.
If excessive snowfall necessitates professional snow removal, be sure to hire an experienced snow plow driver who won't scrape off the top of the asphalt while shoveling. You can also place visible markers along the curbs of your driveways and pathways to prevent snow plows from damaging the sides.
De-ice with caution
Corrosive de-icing agents can cause more harm than good to your asphalt paving. Refrain from using rock salt, as it can eat away at the paved surface and cause structural damage. Less-corrosive alternatives such as potassium chloride could be more suitable for preserving your asphalt paving.
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