Repairing cracks should be on the top of your to-do list when you’re preparing the driveway or parking lot for winter. Cracks represent damage that has already occurred – but damage that could get even worse during the harsh months of winter.
Luckily, cracks between 1/8” wide and 1” wide can be filled in using a crack fill. This mix of asphalt and rubber will seal the crack, prevent further water damage, and help to create a more uniform surface.
Seal coating is one of our top parking lot winter preparation tips because it can dramatically improve the lifespan of your driveway or parking lot. Once your larger cracks have been filled, seal coating will fill in the even smaller cracks – less than 1/8” wide and even cracks invisible to the naked eye.
Seal coating is the ultimate way to prevent water penetration and further cracking. It also protects against the sun (oxidizing) and chemicals (gas, oils and salts). Another benefit of seal coating is that it produces a beautiful, rich, dark color that makes your parking lot or driveway look like new.
Seal coating requires preparation because it is typically not done in the winter. To cure properly, seal coating requires temperatures of at least 50% or rising, and no more than a 40% chance of rain. Because of that, spring through fall are ideal times for seal coating.
Check the Drainage
Both crack filling and seal coating are done to help prevent water damage, which is a big risk during the winter months. To further guard against this damage, another parking lot winter preparation step is to check your drainage.
Drainage is basically an escape route for any water that falls on your driveway or parking lot – it gives this water a place to go so it doesn’t sit on top of the surface and cause moisture damage. To avoid pooling and standing water, have your drainage system inspected before winter begins.
Keep it Clean
Driveway and parking lot winter preparation cannot be complete without a good old cleaning. Cleaning can help improve the look and safety of your parking lot. It can also be a good time to thoroughly check the surface for any cracks or damage that should be addressed before winter begins.
Cleaning your driveway involves getting rid of dirt and debris. You can sweep, rinse or use a pressure washer for this. Another important step is to clean up any chemical spills which can damage the surface, such as motor oil or gasoline.
These tips will help you prepare your parking lot or driveway for the winter. You may also be interested in these 4 Signs Your Driveway or Parking Lot Needs Repair. By using these driveway and parking lot winter preparation tips, you can fortify your parking lot or driveway during the winter, and extend its lifespan all year long.