How To Prevent Cracking In Your Asphalt Driveway Over Winter

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Winters are brutal to just about every material. Concrete and asphalt suffer extensively if you do not prepare them for the drastic change in temperature and weather. Here are a few things you should be doing the minute the temperatures begin cooling off in early autumn. 

Wash and Dry the Asphalt in Your Driveway

Yes, this step seems weird, but the next step requires a clean surface. Use a hand sprayer attachment on the end of a garden hose, or a pressure washer. Start at the top of your driveway and sweep down to the foot of your driveway in a side-to-side motion. Stop where your asphalt stops. Use any sort of blowing and drying machine you have or can rent to quickly dry the asphalt. Do not depend on the wind to do this, or you will get more dirt and debris all over before you can start the next phase of the project. 

Clear-Coat the Driveway

Using a clear coat on the asphalt prepares it for the final winterization step. The clear coat provides a thin, smooth layer that makes the driveway look bump free and slightly glossy. (If you lived in a warmer place, you could stop with this coat, but this is Canada, after all.) It also provides the driveway's surface with a more readily adhesive surface, to which the next protective step will stick.

Seal-Coating the Driveway

Finally, you will need to seal-coat your driveway. Seal-coating products get their name from the slick, smooth, black color they have, which looks like a wet seal's coat. Similar to a seal's coat, these products coat your asphalt in a waterproof protective layer that will not allow snow and ice to break through. You will need a long-handled squeegee tool, and a five-quart pail or two of the seal-coat product.

It is a good idea to start at the top of the driveway and gently pull or push the product down to the foot of the driveway with the squeegee tool. If you have a garage that is separate from the house, and a side door on your garage, you can start at the foot of your driveway and work your way up too. The side door on your garage gives you a way out after you have finished the driveway. That way, you do not step into the black seal-coat and destroy what you just completed.

To learn more, talk to companies like City Wide Services.

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