When you install new pavement, it is a good idea to add a seal coat over the asphalt to ensure it lasts longer. Asphalt will not endure forever, but seal coating can extend its longevity for years.
However, eventually, you will need to replace damaged asphalt. But before this time, you can use a process called resurfacing to help it remain structurally sound for even longer.
These two practices have similar goals to protect asphalt pavement but massively differ in their actions. Read on to learn more about when you need to seal coat your asphalt pavement and when it is time to resurface it.
Seal Coating Asphalt Prevents Damage
Asphalt is a durable material that can endure without issue for many years. However, the climate, the usage of the pavement, and other factors can impact how quickly asphalt will wear down over time. If you know this pavement will endure heavy weights or traffic, you should definitely consider seal coating the area.
A seal coat is a membrane painted onto dried asphalt made of sealing material. It provides extra shielding against moisture, sunlight, grime, and debris that might otherwise damage the pavement over time.
Seal coats will last for three to five years. Then you will need to reapply this protective layer to the asphalt. You can hire a paving contractor to strip the old sealant and coat the new layer onto your asphalt.
This way, you know the entire area has a proper shield over it that can prevent major damage to your pavement. Without this layer, your pavement can form cracks or potholes that might be expensive to repair.
Resurface Damaged Asphalt Pavement
Though seal coating offers thorough protection for pavement, asphalt will not last forever. If you start to notice cracks forming regularly in your pavement, you might need to resurface the area.
Asphalt can usually last for eight to twelve years before needing this treatment. Patching can fix small problems, but if they occur frequently, it is likely time to resurface. This process involves removing the top layer of the asphalt, beyond just the seal coat, and laying a fresh layer over it.
Then the asphalt has a newer material that will better resist potential damages. More severe cracks and potholes will likely need more extensive repair than resurfacing can offer though. After twenty years, you will likely need to replace the entire asphalt area, including its foundation, rather than just resurface.
But resurfacing pavement can extend the asphalt’s lifespan by eight or more years. This treatment works well for surface-level asphalt concerns. Though more expensive than seal coating, it offers more advanced refurbishing to your asphalt and can fix more structural problems rather than just prevent them.
A paving expert can evaluate your asphalt to determine if seal coating, resurfacing, or replacing pavement will be the best option for your space. Call a paving company in Annapolis, MD today at no cost to you at 410.773.9244.