Seal coating of asphalt pavements

Seal coating of asphalt pavements guide, Tarmac path weathering, Charles County MD, Online road advice

Seal coating of asphalt pavements advice

30 Nov 2021

Seal coating of asphalt pavements cyclist on road path

Seal coating of asphalt pavements – Why is it necessary?

The asphalt paving surface withstands a lot of loads and the exposure to the elements of weather causes wear and tear that damages the surface. Proper maintenance of the asphalt paving is necessary to ensure its long life and avoid costly repairs. Since the surface of the asphalt pavements is porous, water passes inside the paving and starts the damage from inside.

As a result, small cracks and holes appear on the surface, which most people tend to ignore, thinking it is minor damage. Quick repairing of the smaller damages by patching might work temporarily. Still, for a long-term solution, the experts of Asphalt Paving Charles County MD can suggest the proper remedial measures. They might even recommend seal coating of newly laid asphalt paving that can delay the onset of damage and extend the life of the paved surface.

What is seal coating?

Any area paved with asphalt like parking lots, driveways, and other sidewalks is suitable for seal coating that consists of applying a coat of liquid product on the paved surface that seals all kinds of openings like almost invisible cracks and small voids. The coating acts as a protective layer on asphalt paving. It reinforces the surface to enable it to withstand the forces of the elements of nature more effectively, thereby minimizing the chances of early damage to the surface.

Asphalt pavement without seal coating is highly susceptible to wind, rain, and sunlight that causes oxidation of the asphalt top and hardens it. As a result, the surface becomes highly brittle and starts cracking at different places, thereby beginning the decay and damage that sets in deep.

Frequency of seal coating

Seal coating is a necessary treatment right from laying a new asphalt pavement and requires repeating it once a year after that to take care of the seasonal effects on asphalt paving. Most homeowners and businesses consider seal coating as part of the maintenance plan for asphalt pavements. However, depending on the kind of exposure and load borne by the asphalt paving, the frequency of seal coating might change. For driveways and parking lots, the frequency can be 2-3 years for regular use and once a year if the area experiences heavy traffic.

Types of seal coating

Coal tar sealer is the most commonly used seal coating material, and the other type of sealing material is asphalt emulsion coating. Although coal tar sealer is less expensive and reason for most people choosing it, the product management technique is critical to ensure satisfactory results. Only professional applicators can do the job, and the material can effectively resist the action of chemicals and oils on the asphalt surface.

Asphalt emulsion sealers are more eco-friendly as they contain a lower amount of VOCs (volatile organic compounds) than regular products produced from coal tar. However, the chemical-resistant property is lower than coal tar sealer.

Moreover, there are acrylic sealers and fast-dry sealers. Acrylic sealers contain synthetic polymers and are more expensive.  Fast-dry sealers are suitable for areas of high footfalls as the quick-drying material hastens the sealing process.

The solid content in the products determines the quality. More is the solid content in the seal coating better is the product quality.

Comments on this guide to how to coat pavements article are welcome.

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