Remember when your asphalt driveway was one continuous band of black leading up to your garage? It was clean and beautiful then, but now it’s showing the wear and tear of the years of exposure. You may think you have to break it up and start all over again, but in most cases, such drastic measures are not necessary. If you catch the cracks early enough, fill them in and then seal the driveway, a beautiful blacktop driveway can once again be yours. Best of all, it’s a simple DIY project to accomplish blacktop crack repair.
Why Are Cracks in Blacktop Harmful?
Over time, the expansion and contraction of the earth will cause a shift in the ground under and around a driveway, causing cracks to appear. These cracks allow water the penetrate beneath the surface of the driveway, and when that water freezes and thaws, the cracks get bigger. Left untreated, the driveway can become uneven, causing irreparable damage. It’s important to repair these cracks as soon as possible to prevent bigger problems.
How to Fix Cracks
Use a high-quality ready-to-use asphalt crack filler for any openings ½ inch or smaller. Make sure the surrounding blacktop is clean and free of oil or grease, in order to achieve the best possible bond. Pour the filler directly from the can and in minutes, you can have all your cracks filled. Make your repair work last and make your driveway look good once again by finishing your repair work with a sealer, which will extend the life of your driveway.
How to Seal the Driveway
Once the crack filler has dried, clean the entire driveway to eliminate all the oil, grease, and dirt from the surface. Make sure the air temperature is between 70 and 90 degrees. Mist the driveway with a fine water spray to cool it down one hour before applying the sealer. Follow the instructions on the can to spread out the sealer. There is a wide variety of sealers available, depending on your budget, and all have varying timelines as to how long to expect them to last. A quality product will not need to be reapplied for up to eight years, so factor into your pricing structure how many years you’ll have before needing to buy more product. A sealer coat will prevent fading, provide a barrier to UV rays and oxidation, and will cut down on the amount of cracking, so it makes good sense to apply a sealer once you accomplish your blacktop crack repair.