Do you have a driveway? Do you own an apartment building or a rental property with a parking lot? Do you own a business with a patio? Do you manage a small town or a parks department? If you've answered yes to any of these questions, you may occasionally need to hire a paving company to provide paving services for you. These companies can do anything from small paths and patios to large parking lots. They can put in plain gray concrete or dress it up with acid stains, etchings, and more. All the options can be overwhelming, but this blog is here to help. Enjoy.
Spring is usually considered the best time to have your pavement repaired, with fall coming in second. But if you just skip the whole thing and let fall turn into winter without having your pavement sealed or getting the cracks filled, what will happen to your parking lot? It probably won't crumble to dust over the course of one winter, but you should know that there are several ways in which winter weather can damage the pavement's integrity and usability.
1. Prying cracks wider apart
If your pavement is fairly new, you may assume it doesn't have many cracks. But the reason why sealcoating is recommended within a year of laying the pavement and every couple of years thereafter is because it's easy for tiny cracks to form as the pavement settles or, even where there aren't any actual cracks, the use and the summer weather can wear away the protective tar coating on top of the asphalt. This then allows water to settle in the little grooves in the pavement's texture, and when the weather gets cold, the water expands and forces the sides of the groove apart, causing the pavement to start cracking. Then each time the water thaws, it can seep further down and force the crack apart more and more.
2. Letting water into the sublayers
The deeper cracks get, the more danger your pavement is in. If cracks are superficial, crack sealing is still an option (once the weather is good enough again). But deep cracks can let water get into the lower layers of the pavement, causing water damage there and accelerating crack spreading. This water damage undermines the integrity of the pavement and can then cause alligator cracking, which may mean you need to replace the pavement or at least put in a patch by replacing the affected area.
3. Causing potholes
If alligator cracks go untreated, they can easily develop into actual holes in the pavement. Not only does this give water a highway to the lower levels of the surrounding pavement, but it makes your parking lot much less usable. These problems tend to develop in high-traffic areas, which can greatly reduce customer satisfaction with the parking lot area.
As you can see, winter weather is not your parking lot's friend. So if you have a new parking lot, getting it sealcoated before winter is a great investment, and even if yours has been sealcoated before, repeating this maintenance step every couple of years will help keep your parking lot in usable shape so you don't need to patch or replace it.
Contact paving contractors near you for more information and assistance.Share