Back In Black: Maintenance For An Asphalt Driveway

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While maintenance is more commonly associated with taking care of a piece of machinery, it is also important to maintain a driveway. If you leave your driveway to the elements, things like root growth, UV rays from the sun, and frost wedging can destroy your driveway. However, if you protect your driveway and make quick repairs when needed, you can extend the life of your driveway and get the most for your money.

Trouble with Trees

If trees grow too close to your driveway, the roots of the trees can grow under the driveway and create humps. These humps put stress on the driveway and will eventually lead to cracking. Thus, before you plant a tree, you should get some idea of how the roots of the tree will grow, and then plant the tree far enough away from your driveway that roots won't be an issue. 

Combating UV Rays

UV rays can dry out the asphalt in your driveway. You can tell how dry the asphalt is by its color. If your asphalt is a dull grey color, even after you wash dirt and debris off of it, the sun's rays have undermined the integrity of your driveway. Once your driveway dries out, it gets brittle and is more susceptible to cracking. To protect your driveway, you should hire an asphalt paving company to put a seal coat down on your driveway. The seal coat will restore some life to your driveway and protect it from further weathering. 

Overcoming Frost Wedging

When water freezes, it expands. When water freezes on your driveway, the expansion can push apart the pebbles that make up the driveway, and, over time, the water can cause your driveway to crack. When you see cracks start to form in your driveway, you need to fill the cracks with a rubberized crack-filling compound. Choosing a rubberized compound is important because the rubber will allow the compound to expand and contract as your driveway responds to environmental pressures. Cracking is also an indication that your driveway is getting brittle, so you need to apply a seal coat. 

Left alone, a driveway will succumb to weathering within a few years. However, if you take a proactive approach, you can extend the life of your driveway. Paying for seal coats and crack-filling compounds is a lot cheaper than installing a new driveway, so maintenance is a more cost-effective option than negligence. 

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