Prepare Asphalt Pavement For Winter And Snow
Most homeowners have a ritual in the fall which prepares their home and the exterior for the coming winter. Any furniture left outside will get put away, the garden hose will be stored, and all the other will tasks necessary to prepare for winter will be performed. You might not think it’s necessary to prepare your asphalt driveway for winter, but there really are some useful steps you can take which will help your driveway survive the extremes of winter and be in better shape in the spring.
Make necessary repairs
When weather starts to cool down, it causes some changes in your driveway’s asphalt. The freezing and thawing cycle which happens throughout much of winter causes expansion and contraction in the makeup of your asphalt. In order to maintain structural integrity and great performance during the wintertime and after, you should carry out any needed repairs.
It’s important that you fill in any potholes which may have developed so that water doesn’t have a chance to pool up and expand, because that will invariably increase the size of your pothole. If you notice any cracks in your pavement, these should be filled in as well so that water can’t penetrate beneath the asphalt surface and compromise the base. It’s a good idea to sealcoat your asphalt so that it can be protected against low temperatures and snow or ice which tend to pile up.
Clear away debris
Anything which might interfere with snow removal during winter should be cleared away prior to the cold season. In most cases, you can remove any undesirable objects with blowers and with sweeping, but you might also want to consider a professional cleaning. If you have a professional cleaning conducted on your asphalt driveway, it will reveal any structural issues such as potholes or cracks which need to be addressed right away. It will also ensure that any large pieces of debris don’t have the chance to freeze and damage your asphalt over the long winter season.
Prepare for maintenance essentials
Make sure you’re prepared for the coming winter by having one or two good sturdy shovels ready, so that snow removal can be accomplished right after it happens. If you have subscribed to a snow removal service, that might be even better because it will be far less work on your part. When you’re purchasing shovels for snow removal, it’s best to avoid those which have sharp edges, because these can slowly damage the asphalt of your driveway, and could conceivably make repairs necessary. If you decide to go with a snow removal service, you should choose one which will remove excess snow piles, which has 24-hour dispatch service, and which can provide salting service to prevent snow buildup under normal conditions.
Remove standing water or pools
As winter approaches, you should make a point of noting where there are any pools or standing water in your asphalt driveway. These areas should be repaired in the springtime, but in the meantime you should also be prepared to remove any standing water before it has a chance to freeze and turn into ice. This could lead to further damage with your asphalt, and of course it will also present a driving hazard because ice is very slippery and can cause your car to lose control.
It will be easiest to note where there are any places in your driveway where water accumulates, simply by conducting a thorough check after a significant rainfall during the autumn. If there’s still time, you should have this repaired, otherwise you’ll be obliged to wait till spring when the weather is more conducive to repairs.