The fall season is here and it’s time to gear up for a new set of home improvement projects. If your home has a blacktop driveway, this is the time to add a coat of asphalt sealer.
Before popping open that first can of sealer, there are some preparation steps you need to follow to get the most out of your efforts. Give the driveway a good sweeping to remove loose stones and debris and trim back any grass creeping over the edges. The oil and gas stains that have accumulated since the last sealing should be treated with a driveway degreaser and sealed with a spot sealer, otherwise they can “bleed” through the asphalt.
Give your driveway a good cleaning. Using a driveway applicator brush, apply a driveway cleaner and work it in. After letting it dry and hosing it off, fill any small cracks with flexible crack filler. “Small” is a relative term, of course, but in most cases, anything up to a 1/2″ probably qualifies. Holes and larger cracks need to be filled with blacktop patch that can be applied with a trowel.
Now you’re ready to pull on your gloves and crack open that can of sealer. Pour out a small amount of sealer at a time and spread evenly with the squeegee side of the driveway applicator working in four-foot areas. Work down the length of the driveway until you reach the end. Since the sealer is latex, cleanup is relatively easy. Then, stand back and admire a good job well done! Use the empty sealer cans to close off the driveway and wait 24 – 48 hours before you drive on it.