Asphalt Parking Lot Repair: When It's Time and How It's Done
Are you wondering if it's time to repair your aging asphalt parking lot?
Parking lots are an essential part of most commercial properties, but they're easy to forget in the hustle and bustle of daily life.
If you're not quite sure if it's time to invest in some new blacktop, then let us help.
Read on and we'll show you the signs that it's time for some serious repair instead of just turning your eyes skyward.
The Big One: Potholes
If your parking lot has potholes, you're better off just calling a professional than waiting for things to get worse.
Most asphalt repair is intended to prevent potholes.
They're a serious problem, producing a rough ride for potential customers, looking rather ugly, and becoming a legal liability.
In short: if you have potholes then you need to call in a specialist before they create serious problems for you.
Depending on the type of damage which has occurred this can require either an overlay or complete repair of the affected area.
When Cracks Become a Problem
Minor cracks naturally occur in blacktop over time. It's just a fact of life, and regular maintenance to fill smaller cracks should be performed when the asphalt is resealed.
Cracks aren't always just a small problem, in some cases, they can indicate a serious issue and necessitate more repairs than it would seem at first glance,
Any crack over 1/4" in width may soon prove to be a problem.
There's also "alligator cracking" which occurs as long segments of thin, small cracks that resemble crocodilian scales. These are actually indicative of serious need of repairs as the usual cause is structural damage to the underlying asphalt.
You should keep an eye on any obvious cracks as well. If they're growing rapidly there's likely a problem that needs to be dealt with.
A Sinking Feeling
Sinking, buckling, and warping are all serious problems with asphalt. Since the substance is flexible it's almost inevitable that some surface deformation will occur.
Where it becomes a problem is when the warping has reached the point it generates cracks. This often occurs along the outside edges of the pavement and can grow into a larger problem rapidly.
Sinking can be even worse. One of the main things that a contractor does when laying a parking lot is to ensure that there will be adequate drainage. If the asphalt is sinking then it often creates problems with puddles or pools of water showing up in the middle of your parking lot.
That's going to be a big drawback for anyone who has to use it.
It also reduces the effective lifespan of the asphalt. Pools of water are much more than a cosmetic issue, they can also slowly eat away at the binding agents in the surfacing material.
Sinking is often caused by poor drainage from the building as well, simply put: the downspout isn't far enough away from the structure and the water from rains is causing damage.
A professional should be able to help you address any of the issues which have come up and refer you to the outside services you need to prevent further damage after the initial repair.
Crumbling edges are a common source of damage to parking lots.
Since the edges of the asphalt lack the surrounding material you'll find in the middle they can become a big problem. Cracks that are barely notable farther in can cause chunks of debris to fall off.
This gradual decay is only going to get worse as time goes on. Make sure to regularly inspect the edges of your parking lot to avoid the problem becoming worse.
In this case, all it takes is a bit of extra pressure to turn a small problem into a much larger one.
Vehicles aside, even the pressure of walking on them can cause the edges to continue to crumble until you're missing a sizable portion of your lot and need some serious repairs instead of a small patch job.
Shades of Grey
Asphalt will fade from the shiny blacktop we all love to a greyish-white over time. It's only natural: pretty much every black surface fades due to UV degradation.
For many potential clients in upscale areas, this can be a huge problem. While primarily an aesthetic issue it can be easily fixed with a resurfacing.
In some cases, it indicates that the seal coating needs to be redone. It's a vital piece of preventative maintenance that should be undertaken every 3-5 years depending on the initial state of the asphalt.
Sealcoating is great for both restoring the color of the blacktop and protecting it from further damage. Many of the above issues are simply caused by a lack of vital maintenance which should be taken on a regular basis.
Before sealing the asphalt you may want to consult with your contractor to see what needs fixing. Sealcoat protects the asphalt, it doesn't repair anything but the color.
Time for Asphalt Parking Lot Repair? Call Us!
Asphalt parking lots are durable and long-lasting, but they do require the occasional repair in addition to maintenance. Some are cosmetic, but others will get worse if not taken care of.
In extreme cases, they can even put you at the wrong end of a lawsuit.
So, if you've noticed any of the above signs of decay in your parking lot it's time to find a professional who can diagnose and fix the problem.
Why not give us a call?