How Seal Coating Can Prolong the Lifespan of Your Asphalt Parking Lot

Seal coating is a recommended practice to maintain asphalt driveways and parking lots. It protects the paved surface from damage caused by oil, gas, and chemical substances that soften it.

Seal Coating

The best time to do seal coating is from spring through fall. The process requires dry, non-rainy weather days to ensure the seal coat dries appropriately.

Sealcoating is the process of adding a layer of coal-tar or asphalt emulsions to your blacktop surface in order to protect it from UV damage, rain, snow, chemicals, oil and fuel spills, and general wear and tear. If done correctly, it can prolong the lifespan of your asphalt by up to 30 years. It is an essential part of overall pavement maintenance and can help prevent the need for expensive repairs or replacements.

Asphalt is made up of rock and stone or gravel and a binder, which is created by the distillation of certain crude oils. Maintaining the binder is vital to extending the life of your pavement, as U.V. rays, rain, and chemicals will degrade it over time, causing the asphalt to turn brittle and eventually crumble. Sealcoating helps protect your asphalt from these elements, extending its lifespan and keeping it looking great.

To be effective, seal coating needs to be applied to a clean and dry pavement surface. Workers should sweep and remove any noticeable debris before applying the seal coat, which takes at least 24 hours to dry. For safety reasons, the area must be closed off to pedestrians and vehicles during and after application.

One gallon of INTEGRA-SEAL(r) asphalt sealer covers about 100 square feet, depending on the age, surface texture and porosity of the pavement. For larger areas, multiple gallons may be needed. Before you begin, it is important to remove any caked up oil drippings or spots with a special oil cleaner (available from most sealer companies). If left untreated, these spots will bleed through the seal coat and stain the pavement underneath.

While seal coating does not repair existing damages such as cracks and holes, it will fill in these minor imperfections, making the surface look new again and adding a protective barrier to the pavement. It is also significantly cheaper than repairing or replacing the asphalt.

If you’re considering becoming a professional sealcoater, keep in mind that the profitability of your business will depend on several factors. These include weather conditions, the season, and the number of leads you can convert into customers. In addition, you’ll need to invest in a good quality sealer and equipment to ensure that your work is up to standard.

What are the benefits of sealcoating?

Asphalt pavement is made of rock and/or stone and gravel held together by a petroleum product called “binder.” The binder keeps the rocks together, but it also degrades over time and allows the underlying rocks to break apart. Seal coating helps prevent this degradation by sealing the surface of the pavement.

Sealcoating is an environmentally friendly process and when done correctly will not only enhance the appearance of your parking lot or driveway, but it will prolong its lifespan. Asphalt has a limited lifespan as it weathers and is subject to damage from the cars that drive over it. Sealcoating extends the life of your asphalt and is much less expensive than a full repaving job.

The protective layer of the seal coat helps block out harmful UV rays and chemicals that can eat away at your asphalt, causing it to crack and crumble. The cracks and deterioration of your parking lot or driveway can lead to a host of problems, including potholes, which are costly to repair. Sealcoating can save you money in the long run by protecting your investment and extending its life.

Leaks are another big problem that can damage a paved surface. Especially in the case of asphalt, oil and gasoline leaks can penetrate the surface and cause it to degrade over time. When auto fluids such as oil and fuel leak onto a paved surface it softens the asphalt, which causes it to weaken and break down. Sealcoating can help protect your asphalt by creating a barrier that keeps these liquids from seeping into the surface of the pavement and degrading it.

Another advantage of seal coating is that it provides a smooth, non-porous surface that makes it easier for rain to wash dirt and debris away. It also makes the task of cleaning your driveway or parking lot a less frequent and less difficult venture. If you hire a professional to clean your asphalt, the use of a seal coat can also decrease the number of times they need to come out and service your property each year.

What are the risks of sealcoating?

If your parking lot or driveway is damaged beyond repair, seal coating can make it look like new again. However, it is important to keep in mind that sealcoating only makes cracks and other damage look better for a few years. If the underlying problems remain unaddressed, they will reappear and may result in costly repairs or even pavement replacement.

A properly applied asphalt sealcoat provides a barrier to oil, fuel, chemicals and other substances that will degrade the surface. It also prevents the softened asphalt from cracking under the pressure of vehicular traffic. This prevents further damage to the underlying structure and reduces maintenance costs over time.

However, there are some less-reputable paving contractors who use cheap sealant to maximize their profits. The resulting low-quality product will not last and may not provide the long-term protection you need for your pavement. This is why it is so important to hire a professional contractor.

You should always avoid applying a sealcoat yourself or hiring a contractor who uses inferior products. You should also only hire a contractor who has experience with commercial or residential sealcoating and can provide references of previous jobs. In addition, the contractor should have the correct specialized tools—such as pressurized spray equipment-to ensure a fast and efficient application of the seal coat. They should also be familiar with the product manufacturer’s individual instructions on applying their brand of sealer.

Another risk of sealcoating is the impact it can have on the environment. Many paving contractors use coal tar-based sealants, which contain polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons that can be harmful to the environment. These contaminants wash into stormwater runoff, contaminate soil and dust particles, stick to tires, and can be tracked into homes or businesses. In fact, a study by the U.S. Geological Survey exposed minnows and water fleas to coal tar sealant runoff and found 100 percent mortality rates for the animals.

In order to minimize environmental impacts, the paved area must be closed off to pedestrians and vehicles for 24 hours prior to and after sealcoat application. It is also not recommended to apply sealcoat when rain is expected in the next day or two, as the moisture will dilute or dissipate the material.

How does sealcoating work?

Before the process of sealcoating begins, it’s important to ensure that the asphalt is clean. This includes power washing the surface and treating any oil spots. It’s also necessary to repair any cracks and allow them to dry completely before applying the sealant. It’s recommended that a professional contractor apply the sealant, as they have access to the proper tools and experience to make sure the job is done right.

The main benefit of seal coating is that it protects the pavement from damage caused by the elements and traffic. As a result, the cost of repair is minimized and the life of the asphalt is extended. It’s recommended that the sealant be applied every few years to maximize the effect.

A freshly paved driveway or parking lot is smooth and beautiful, but over time it starts to show signs of wear and tear with the appearance of chips and cracks. This can be costly to repair and may mean that the need for a new replacement will arise sooner than expected. Seal coating is an inexpensive way to extend the life of your asphalt and keep it looking brand new.

Asphalt is a petroleum product, so it’s easy for auto fluids like oil and gas to seep into the pavement and soften it. When this happens, the granules that hold the asphalt together start to break off. Seal coating protects the asphalt from the deterioration caused by these chemicals and it keeps water from seeping in, which could cause more serious damage over time.

The sun can also damage asphalt by causing it to fade and oxidize. The sun’s UV rays can also penetrate the surface and break down the binders that hold the aggregate or fines in the asphalt together. Seal coating fills in any surface voids and helps to shield the asphalt from the sun’s damaging UV rays and chemicals.

One of the most important things to remember when it comes to seal coating is that the application must be completed in ideal weather conditions. It’s best to wait for a few days that are warm but not hot, and there shouldn’t be any rain in the forecast. If the temperature or rainfall is too high, the sealant won’t be able to set properly and it won’t be able to do its job.