If you have a new asphalt driveway, or even if you are just thinking of getting one, you have probably heard about you ought to sealcoat it. You might naturally wonder whether it is really necessary to spend the extra time and money to do so. Why do you actually need to seal your driveway anyway?
To make a long story short, sealing your driveway is optional but highly recommended. Sealing your driveway brings a variety of benefits that help extend your driveways life and save you money in the long run. Here are 5 important reasons why you might want to seal your driveway.
5 Benefits of Sealing Your Driveway
1. The Curb Appeal:
Sealing makes your driveway look better, period. There isn’t too much to say here. A fresh sealcoat on your driveway will help restore your driveway’s original look. It draws out and deepens whatever color, normally black, that you used. If you seal your driveway it would not be strange for your neighbors to think that it was brand new, or at least newly replaced.
2. Protection from Water and Oil:
Sealing your driveway will also waterproof it and prevent oil and gas from penetrating deep into the asphalt. The importance of this cannot be underestimated. One of the most common causes of cracks in driveways is water flow.
If water gets beneath your driveway it can disturb the gravel base beneath. Add in the constant freezing and thawing of the water due to a classic New England winter and it does not take long at all for cracks to form. By waterproofing your driveway sealing helps prevent or slow down this process, extending your driveway’s life significantly.
3. Oxidation/Erosion Protection:
Similarly, sealing your driveway can help protect it from other rigors of the natural environment, namely oxidation and erosion, particularly due to the sun. Oxidation breaks up the binder within your driveway (in this case asphalt), effectively accelerating your driveway’s aging process. By sealing your driveway you help lessen the impact of UV rays and other natural hazards and thus effectively extend the life of your driveway.
Sealing your driveway is also easy and relatively cheap compared to the alternative, major repairs. If you do not seal your driveway it will be more vulnerable to natural rigors like water and sun. Since it is more vulnerable it will likely crack or otherwise erode and require repairs.
While prices may vary, repairing (and certainly replacing) your driveway costs several dollars per square foot. In contrast sealing costs cents, maybe even pennies, per square foot. Consequently sealing often saves you money in the long run.
5. Crack Prevention:
One major nuisance to anyone with a driveway is cracking, and sealing your driveway can help alleviate this issue. Cracks occur in driveways for various reasons as we discussed in this blogpost. However, almost all of those issues can be alleviated (although not entirely stopped) with proper sealing. By slowing oxidation, erosion, and water damage, sealing greatly slows the creation of cracks.
What Doesn’t Sealing do?
While Sealing can do a lot for your driveway it is important to note what it can’t do. Most notably sealing is a preventive way to protect your driveway. It can not repair your driveway. If you are trying to get rid of cracks we recommend using our crack repair services and then sealcoating the driveway afterward. We strongly suggest filling any cracks you do have before sealcoating in order to make it more effective.
Speaking of Crack repair, we strongly suggest you consider sealing your driveway after you repair any cracks. The process of repairing cracks leaves black streaks of tar where the cracks once were, which will look out of place if the rest of the driveway isn’t also sealcoated. Consequently, we suggest you seal the driveway afterwards which will hide these repairs and make the whole driveway look new.
It must also be remembered that Sealing cannot save your driveway indefinitely. Properly sealing your driveway can greatly extend your driveways life, but it can never completely prevent aging. Eventually there will be little that sealing can do.
How Can you Seal Your Driveway?
Now that you know the benefits of sealing there are two ways you can go about sealing your own driveway. First, you could do it yourself. You will have to do all the work yourself and purchase supplies, but it is certainly doable and even potentially cheaper.
Of course while it can be cheaper, doing it yourself does require a heavy time investment and can be difficult. However, if you wish to save time and avoid hassle (and potential mistakes) you can hire a professional team instead.
We at Greenway offer both crack repair and sealing services. When you work with Greenway Industries you will receive efficient, professional driveway maintenance and excellent customer service. If you are looking to get a driveway sealed there is really nowhere better to look than Greenway. If you are interested please call us today at 203-544-4687.