If your business or organization needs to repair its parking lot, but the expense of hiring the pros is putting you off, we show you how to do the basics.
All our tips come courtesy of SaveOnPaving.com — genuine asphalt paving companies across the USA.
PREPARE YOUR SURFACE
The first thing you need to do prior to doing any work is to thoroughly clean your parking lot.
This means removing any stains or dents in it. If you have discoloration or dirty patches, perhaps where oil or gas has lain then these need to be removed.
We recommend a quality de greaser for your driveway, to remove all the oil and gas spots.
Then you need to let your driveway dry and brush it thoroughly of any debris.
FME-AG.com does not recommend the use of a pressure washer on the driveway immediately before you treat it. Sometimes, this can blow dirt and debris right into the pores of the driveway.
Other little hints for achieving a swift clean up include making sure you’ve got some trash cans and bin bags around, to make the task of picking up the litter easier.
CRACKS AND POTHOLES
Before attempting any repair at all, inspect the parking lot for cracks and potholes.
Potholes and cracks will only get worse and can of course cause damage to both people and vehicles.
Fortunately, it is easy to fix them.
The equipment and products you need depend on the size of the hole.
SMALL HOLE (LESS THAN HALF AN INCH)
We would recommend using a cold crack filler.
MEDIUM HOLE (1 INCH WIDE)
We would recommend a hot pour crack filler.
You will need to heat it in a melter and a pour pot. You could also use a machine that does both, applies the filler and heats it.
Repair kits can be purchased easily enough for these small jobs.
LARGER HOLE (OVER 1 INCH IN WIDTH)
For a larger hole, you will need a cold asphalt patch. This is something that will set very rapidly. It is easy to fill in these holes quickly with a product like this. It will stick itself to the inside of the pothole and prevent is from spreading further. The process of applying it is pretty straightforward and easy enough for the lay person to understand.
SEAL COATING YOUR PARKING LOT
Once you have repaired your cracks and potholes and removed any oil spillage or any other damage to your asphalt, you will need to seal coat it.
Seal coating is recommended because it protects your asphalt from further damage and if this is a parking lot you are treating, it is going to see some serious use!
A quality seal coat can help prevent oil, gas and water damage – all of which are likely to occur in a parking lot.
The best seal coats contain coal tar, this helps repel oil and gas from your asphalt parking lot.
Although a homeowner may get away with the manual application of seal coating with a squeegee, if this is an industrial or commercial parking lot you are probably going to want to use professional grade equipment.
We would recommend using a seal coating spray system. These can be purchased easily enough from an asphalt paving contractor firm and are refreshingly straightforward to use, even for a beginner.
You should seal coat your parking lot every one to two years, depending on the amount of use it gets.
Although line striping may seem like a daunting task, rest assured, you can do this yourself.
The line stripers can be bought fairly cheaply and you will be surprised at the professional look you can achieve with some basic attention to detail.
Check out our blog on line striping for beginners