When the snow finally melts after a long, hard winter, the last thing that you're going to want to see is a driveway full of cracks that you're going to have to pay to repair. This can be extremely frustrating for a homeowner who has a laundry list of other bills on his or her mind. Here are some tips for protecting your driveway during the winter so that you don't have to pay tons of money in the spring to repair it.
1. Avoid Acetate Melts
Asphalt tends to hold up against rock salt and other items that you can put on your driveway to make the ice melt more quickly. However, melting mixtures that contain acetate can break the bonds that holds your the aggregate and the asphalt together, allowing it to let in more water. As the temperature chances, the water inside your asphalt is going to contract and expand as it melts and freezes, which is going to force large cracks open in your driveway. To avoid this, either focus on finding bags of ice melting material that does not contain acetate or use something to build traction on the ice but not necessarily melt it, such as sand.
2. Seal Your Asphalt
Before winter comes, consider seal coating your asphalt. First, wait for a day when it isn't too humid. Then, clean off your driveway so that it is free of dirt, dust, and plant material. These materials will prevent the seal coat from sticking to your asphalt and providing a coherent seal. Use a pressure washer if you have any particularly stubborn spots.
Next, repair any cracks that you might have in your pavement by filling them in with an asphalt repair material. This can be purchased at your local hardware store. Allow any repairs you made to cure. Thoroughly stir your barrel of sealant.
Finally, pour a little bit of sealant into one of the corners of your driveway. Use a squeegee to push the puddle of sealant around so that the area around where you poured the sealant has a thin layer on it. Move beyond the area that you just sealed and pour out another puddle of sealant. Continue in this manner until your entire driveway has a thin layer of sealant on it. Allow the sealant to dry overnight before you allow anyone to walk on it.
For more information, talk to a company such as Construction Asphalt Paving Services Inc.