There is a reason that you visit your doctor at least once a year. You want to have an annual physical, make sure your vitals are stable and in good standing, and make sure everything is where it should be. If for some reason something is a little off kilter or not right, you can address it early and take proper measures to get yourself well and running a full capacity. Your parking lot is a lot like your personal health, preventative care is the best way to go! Not only can it save you a lot of money, but any issues can be identified early and mitigated, allowing your parking lot time to “heal” and in a short time get it up and running at full capacity.
Just like your personal health, there are warning signs that your parking lot will give you when it needs some attention. Cracks, pot holes, loose or deteriorated asphalt are the obvious signs, but there are other signs that should not be ignored as well.
- Oxidation – (Your asphalt is white or gray) Sunlight will cause your asphalt to oxidize. This will limit the flexibility of the asphalt which will lead to cracks. The more exposure to sunlight, the quicker the oxidation process happens. There is no way to prevent sunlight from hitting your asphalt, but you can mitigate the process through regular sealcoating maintenance. You should have your parking lot sealcoated every 2-3 years based upon parking lot condition and traffic patterns.
- Fuel and oil, which are used by every vehicle that drives or parks on your parking lot, are extremely detrimental to your pavement. Once the pavement absorbs these materials they will eat through and destroy your asphalt. Repairs to any areas that are damaged from fuel and oil can be costly but there is something you can do. Conduct periodic parking lot inspections and clean any stains you find. Power washing may help as well as oil spot primers and other additives that are generally applied by an asphalt maintenance expert.
- Perhaps the most detrimental “symptom” is surface water. Water seeps through the asphalt (because it is porous and flexible) and launches an all out attack on the base, causing potholes and more. Once the base is ruined, the asphalt becomes weak, which means that normal, everyday traffic can begin to damage the parking lot. If the base layer is destroyed, your only option is to have your parking lot completely removed and replaced. All of this damage can be prevented with routine maintenance, and the proper drainage system. Surface Engineering has experts who can assess and help you determine exactly what you need.
If you recognize any of these symptoms in your parking lot, please do not wait to have someone take a look at your lot. “Preventative Care” can save you a lot of money and heart ache, and Surface Engineering will provide you a no obligation analysis to help you make the best decision for your parking lot.