Those small hairline cracks in your asphalt driveway may look insignificant, but they are ultimately compromising the integrity of the asphalt and will eventually widen and deepen, leaving you with unsightly potholes that won't do your car any good. Cracks and dips can also be a tripping hazard and allow weeds to take hold, which leaves your property looking unkempt. Asphalt repairs are pretty straightforward and don't tend to be too costly, but the quicker you get your driveway repaired, the easier the whole process will be. Here's an overview of the steps involved in repairing an asphalt driveway:
Preparing The Cracks
Any debris that's collected in the cracked areas of your driveway needs to be removed to ensure the filler compound adheres well to the asphalt. This is typically done with a pressure washer, and the surface will need to dry before the repair is carried out. Weed killer can also be applied to the cracks to prevent hardy weeds from damaging the repair.
Filling In Cracks
Hairline cracks in asphalt can spread across your driveway pretty quickly. They can be sealed with a bonding agent containing coal tar, which prevents water penetration and joins damaged areas of asphalt together. Deeper cracks may need to be repaired in stages, and an emulsifier may be required to ensure the filler compound adheres well and doesn't oxidise. The filler will be applied with a trowel and a tamper will be used to ensure there are no pockets of air left in the crack. Once level with the driveway surface, the filler will be smoothed out and allowed to dry.
Curing And Sealing
Any areas that have been repaired will need to be avoided until the filler has cured. Tape or cones can be used to mark off the area, and it's wise to keep pets and children off the driveway until the job is completely finished. Curing can prevent the filler from shrinking and help extend the life of the repair, and curing time will vary depending on the type of filler used. The final stage of the repair process is to apply a sealant to the repair. This adds a layer of protection and also helps the repair last as long as possible regardless of the weather conditions it's exposed to.
Your paving contractor will assess the damage to the asphalt and recommend a filler and sealant based on the size and depth of the cracks on your driveway.
For more information about asphalt repairs, contact a local company.