9 Tips to Maintaining Your Parking Lot
Sweep it Clean
Keeping your parking lot clean of debris, including rocks, leaves, and dirt, will not only make it more attractive and safer for the cars and pedestrians using it, it will extend the life of your pavement. Dirt and debris can hamper drainage, leading to ponding and standing water on the surface of the asphalt. This causes the surface to break down over time and allow water into the sub base, softening it, and creating a perfect environment for cracks and potholes.
Look at your Lot
If you’re making frequent sweeps around your lot, it will be easier to keep an eye on things that might otherwise sneak up on you. Cracks, birdbaths, and holes are all threats to your surface’s long, full life, and finding them when they first appear is the best way to lower repair costs.
Clear your Drains
Clearing basins and maintaining proper drainage is another way to add years to your parking lot. A backed-up drain is unsightly, can hide hazards, and the standing water will wear down the pavement’s stability.
Say NO to Weed
Having an occasional weed popping up through a crack isn’t that big of an issue…right? Wrong. Promptly eliminating weeds out of the cracks will prevent long term, irreparable damage. Their roots can push through the pavement, break down its surface, and create tripping hazards.
Fill your Cracks
A filled crack is a happy, safe, less destructive crack. It keeps water and vegetation out, and your pavement stays dry, solid, and strong. Not all cracks require sealing, but for those that are sufficiently wide and deep enough for it, sealing them as soon as they appear is the best strategy.
Oil = Bad
Your beautiful parking lot is bound to be sullied by a drippy engine at some point, but aside from an unattractive stain, oil can cause similar problems as water: breaking down the integrity of the pavement and weakening your surface. There are a variety of methods for removing oil stains, some come straight out of your kitchen! (we’re looking at you, baking soda and Coca-Cola) Find out what works best for you, just do it before the oil stain gets too comfortable where it is.
Show off your Stripes
Rearranging the furniture at home not only gives everything a fresh look, it can also redirect foot traffic and spare the floors some wear and tear. The benefit to your pavement is the same. If tires are traversing and twisting over the same spots over and over, day after day, chances are those spots could use a break. Redirect, re-stripe, and reveal a freshly designed parking lot. You might even manage to increase your lot’s parking density while you’re at it.
Seal it with a Coat
Seal coating your pavement every few years covers a multitude of pavement sins, slowing the natural breakdown of materials and preventing water, debris, and other elements from running away with your parking lot. Every lot is different: your climate and daily use will determine how quickly or slowly your seal coat wears off, so consider coating every 2 years, and then see if you can space it out more.
Use Parking Blocks and Speed Bumps that Require no Maintenance!