When putting in a new driveway, the first thing you think about isn’t typically how well it is going to need to be maintained. In fact, it’s best to have a driveway that doesn’t need any maintenance at all, right? If only that was the way the world worked. Fortunately for you, we have some friends in the asphalt repair business who have put together a list of ways that you can keep your asphalt driveway well maintained.
Asphalt driveways, when installed correctly and properly maintained, can last you up to 30 years! Learn how to do the maintenance yourself and you may never need a new driveway again.
Potholes are generally out of our control. Ground water that freezes and expands is the main cause of this nuisance. But, the good news is that you can repair this problem yourself with a bit of cold asphalt mix and a shovel. If your hole is smaller than two feet on all sides, you should be able to fix it with a 50 lb bag, which can be purchased for less than $20. And it’s much simpler to do than someone might think.
Prior to filling the hole, make sure it is cleared of debris and that it is dry. Tar doesn’t stick to wet dirt, and you don’t want that filling just popping out on the next person who drives over it.
If the hole is shallow, the next step is as simple as pouring in the mix (so it reaches about an inch above the hole) and patting it down.
For holes that are more than a few inches deep, you may want to pack in some other materials first, like clay or crushed concrete, before pouring the asphalt mix over it.
Once the mix has been packed down, you can place a board over it for a few days to make sure it hardens. But if it’s packed down tightly enough, it can be driven over immediately.
- Plant Growth
There’s almost nothing more obnoxious than grass and weeds sprouting up between cracks in your driveway. Weed killers work great for these.
One way to remove the plants, without waiting for them to die and deteriorate, is to water them and pull them immediately. Watering them will loosen up the soil allowing you to pull up the roots of the plant. After you’ve pulled the plants, spread a weed killer in the problem areas to prevent new growth.
For an environmentally friendly weed killer, try using 1 cup of vinegar with ¼ teaspoon of dish soap mixed in a spray bottle. Or if you are worried about causing damage to other nearby plants, you can call a weed spraying company that is experienced in eliminating pests while preserving your lawn.
- Removing Dust & Dirt
Keeping your asphalt clear of dust and dirt is similar to maintaining the floor in your kitchen. You can sweep it off for loose debris – dust, dirt, rocks, leaves, etc. The next step is to take your hose, preferably with a high-pressured spray nozzle, and spray off any remaining particles.
For more difficult messes, like caked on mud and stains, you’ll want to start by scraping off excess materials with a dull knife or spatula. Then, like clean your kitchen floor, you can take a mop or sponge soaked with warm soapy water and wash the stain. Rinse it with the hose afterwards and let it air dry.
With these three tidbits of knowledge, you can rest easy knowing that you will be able to care for your asphalt driveway.
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