Improving Your Hardscaping

After I realized that our back porch was chipping apart, I decided that I needed to work a little harder to make things right. I started carefully analyzing the area, and I realized that the concrete needed to be completely removed and re-poured. I knew that asphalt work was beyond my comfort level, so I decided to call in a professional contractor to do the work. It was amazing to watch them work, and when they were finished our yard looked brand new. This blog is all about improving your hardscaping by replacing old, cracked, or discolored asphalt or concrete paving.

3 Things That Can Damage Asphalt

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Asphalt is a wonderfully durable material that is often used for driveways, walkways, and even patios. Asphalt is a popular choice partly because its flexibility. The fact that it can move and stretch helps prevent cracking and breaking. One of the other reasons that asphalt is so desirable is that it is less expensive than other materials. Laying down basic asphalt costs around $2 to $5 compared to $3 to $10 per square foot for concrete. Stamped asphalt runs between $3 and $9. While asphalt is both inexpensive and durable, it's still important for a homeowner to protect their investment. Here are 3 things that can damage asphalt and what to do about them. 

Trees

Well cared for asphalt can easily last for more than a decade and can even stay strong for up to 20 years. This is also plenty of time for trees to grow larger and develop their root systems. Tree roots that grow underneath asphalt can cause it to warp, buckle, and eventually crack. When planting new trees, homeowners should keep in mind how close they are to an asphalt surface. Small trees that won't grow to more than 30 feet can be planted as close as 3 feet away, while medium trees that are expected to stay under 50 feet tall should be at least 6 feet away. 

Avoiding Indentations

One of the downsides of asphalt's flexibility is that indentations are a possibility. Leaving a heavy object on an asphalt surface for too long can leave and imprint. For driveways this means that a car parked in the same spot everyday or left in the same spot for a significant period of time can lead to changes in the surface of the asphalt. When using asphalt for a patio, the weight of things like fire pits and hot tubs should also be considered. 

Forgoing Sealants

Adding a sealant to an asphalt surface is a must. The average cost to seal is only between $.10 and $.16 per square foot. Driveways and other asphalt surfaces need to be sealed every few years. How often a sealant is needed is dependent on climate and how often the surface is used. Not using a sealant makes asphalt more prone to damage from sunlight, oil, water, and more. A lack of sealant can lead to a need for asphalt repair down the road or even a full replacement sooner than expected

Well-cared-for asphalt can last for years but there are a few things that can lead to damage. Tree roots, heavy objects left sitting, and a lack of sealant are all things that can lead to the need for asphalt repair (from professionals such as those from Salem Paving). 

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23 May 2016