Caring for And Maintaining Your Twin Cities Asphalt Driveway
Once your new asphalt driveway is in place, it will require care and maintenance, both when it’s new, and over its lifetime. Like the rest of the improvements on your property, the better care you give to your asphalt driveway, the longer it will last. The real cost of a driveway is measured over its entire lifetime, so proper care and maintenance is crucial to keeping the cost per year as low as possible. As soon as Richfield Blacktop completes paving your asphalt driveway, its life begins. You can help assure yourself of a long life for your new driveway by following the care and maintenance tips below.
Caring For Your New Asphalt Driveway
First we would like to thank you for entrusting Richfield Blacktop with your asphalt driveway. We know you had several companies to choose from and we appreciate your confidence in our service. The following information includes care and maintenance items to assist you in keeping your driveway in good shape for many years to come. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to call us anytime.
- The First 14 Days are Crucial – The first 14 days of your new driveway is the most critical period, when the driveway is most vulnerable.
- Do not drive on your new driveway for 3-5 days.
- Wait up to 14 days before parking on your new driveway. And when you do, only park on it during the cool part of the day.
- The 90-120 Day Curing Period – Asphalt has a 90-120 day curing process. Special consideration must be used during this period and during the entire first season with your new driveway.
- Do not park on asphalt during the hottest part of the day.
- Do not turn your steering wheel when the car is stopped.
- Keep motorcycle and bicycle stands, boat jacks and other sharp objects off the surface.
- Place plywood under tires for campers and boats that are parked for long periods. This helps dispense the weight of the tires. Even better, try not to park heavy vehicles on the driveway for long periods of time during this first season.
- Do not allow heavy trucks, such as garbage trucks, on the driveway.
- If your driveway is installed in the fall, curing will stop when the weather turns cold, then will resume in the spring.
Continuing Care & Maintenance for Your Asphalt Driveway
After your driveway has fully cured, you can use it normally, but the following tips are important to keep your asphalt driveway looking its best for years to come. You can help to insure its long life and durability:
- Prevent Oil & Gasoline Spills – Asphalt is an oil-based material. Gasoline and oil spills can dissolve the surface of your driveway and cause deterioration. Avoid spilling or leaking these materials, and clean up any spills using absorbent materials to minimize damage.
- Fill Cracks -Cracks may appear due to movement in the base and/or subsoil during a freeze or thaw cycle. Movement can also result from water seeping under the driveway. Water seepage can be due to landscape design, too much rain or over-watering. In Minnesota, eventual cracking is unavoidable. Keeping the cracks filled and your driveway seal coated will help keep your driveway in good condition. You can fill cracks yourself, using a variety of products designed for that purpose, or we can refer you to one of our professional business partners.
- Protect Driveway Edges – The edges are the weakest part of your driveway due to the lack of side support, unless you opt to add Permaloc driveway edging. Avoid driving on the edges since they will crack and crumble over time. We suggest building up the soil near the sides of your driveway with topsoil to approximately one inch from the top of the driveway. This allows room for sod growth and water drainage, and will support the edges and enhance the appearance after the grass is grown.
- Stop Weeds & Grass Growing Through Cracks – Vegetation, such as weeds and grass are able to push through asphalt. In most cases you can use a spot killer to remedy the situation. Sometimes, large plants or trees located near the edge of the driveway will push through. You will probably want to remove the plant for a long-term solution. If a tree root pushes through, and you want to keep the tree, the only remedy is to fill the cracks every year.
- Seal Coating – Using a quality seal coat will increase the life and appearance of your driveway. Seal coating your driveway will lock in the existing oils to keep the asphalt flexible, which reduces cracking. It is very important that you use only top-quality seal coat. We recommend that you seal coat your driveway before the 3rd season of the new driveway and then every 3 years after that. We will be happy to refer you to one of our business partners if you choose not to do the job yourself.
Richfield Blacktop – Minneapolis St. Paul Driveway Professionals
In our 50+ years of building great driveways throughout the Twin Cities Metro Area, we’ve learned that proper driveway maintenance is the key to long driveway life. After we build a great driveway for your home, we want it to look its best for years and decades to come. Anytime you have a question about your driveway, contact us for advice. If you need professional driveway maintenance services, we’re always happy to refer you to a trusted, professional company. If you need repairs, call us first.