Your parking lot is one of the first things that customers notice about your business – after perhaps your building. People will often associate the outside look of your space with the quality of business you run. If your parking lot is falling apart, full of holes, has an uneven base, or turns into a muddy slurry when it rains, this has a direct impact on your business. People take pride in their vehicles, and if your lot takes too much navigation to get through easily, people will find else where to spend their money.

Of course, the opposite is also true. If you have a wonderfully maintained parking structure, people will either notice and remark on it – or it won’t be a consideration when needing your services. Not being a consideration is a benefit as it isn’t something they are worried about – it isn’t stopping them from coming in.

The first step in looking to upgrade your parking lot is to evaluate the current condition of it. Is it gravel? Is it old asphalt? Is it newer, but could use repairs? New lines? There are different options available to you depending on what you have to work with. Reach out to companies like Nilsson Construction Ltd, and they’ll be happy to come out and make recommendations – from a complete excavate, new base, then pave, an overlay of the existing asphalt, or a clean up and seal coat or crack sealing based on what you have. Asphalt isn’t as costly as some anticipate and is also a time saver as it doesn’t take long to complete. The impact to your business is quite minimal during the process. The care and maintenance of asphalt is also less than that of concrete, saving you in the long run as well.

Summer is finally upon us here up in northern Alberta – and we are always glad for it! People are spending more and more time outside, and some of that time isn’t simply for leisure! We all devote a portion of our time taking care of our homes and yards – and your asphalt driveway shouldn’t be any different! Let’s review a few simple tips that will extend the look – and life – of yours!

1. Seal cracks and repair holes as soon as you can. Have a look over your driveway now

that the good weather is here, and see what needs doing. Cracks can appear over the spring as the ground thaws and shifts, even if you had some filled in the fall. If you are a DIY’er, you can purchase sealant at the hardware store, just be sure to follow the directions carefully, and watch the weather to make sure you have adequate weather to let the sealant cure. You can always call professionals who will come and do the job for you as well. Holes can be repaired without having to tear out the whole driveway, just get them while they’re small and before they grow into a problem. Doing a full seal-coat over the entire surface is recommended every 2-5 years depending on the wear and tear of your asphalt space.

2. Don’t work with heavy machinery in high heat on your asphalt. If you can avoid parking heavy vehicles or machinery on the driveway during high heat, you’ll help to prevent ruts from forming. Asphalt is weakest when hot and can shift and separate when under stress.

3. Water your asphalt! We’re not kidding here. Have a kid’s pool to empty? What about those coolers after being at the lake? Feel free to empty them over your driveway, as this will cool your asphalt and strengthen it. We aren't talking "regular watering", just when the temperature is higher than the usual summer heat, watering to cool it helps. Some people take specific time to water it, and others will let the sprinkler reach their driveways as they water the lawn. Of course, always be aware of any water restrictions in your area, and water accordingly.

4. Keep it clean. At least in the spring and in the fall take the time to scrub down your driveway using a broom and some water. This helps keep debris from getting into tiny cracks and making them worse. Cleaning up spills that can come from vehicle maintenance, or faulty parts is a good idea, as fuel and oils can breakdown the make-up of the asphalt and cause damage.

When in doubt, or simply need an opinion on what to do, or can be done, give us a call and we'll be happy to help you keep your asphalt driveway looking its best!

Asphalt repairs are necessary to extend the life of your surface before it begins to wear and break down as it is repeatedly exposed to elements such as water, sunlight and chemicals.

Two primary reasons why your parking lot should always be in good condition:

First, keeping your parking lot in good condition for both vehicle traffic and foot traffic is important to the aesthetics of your business. A clean, well maintained parking lot makes a good impression on those who visit your business. Good upkeep of the physical appearance, including parking lot repairs sets the stage for everything else.

The second reason to make sure repairing asphalt is a priority is a legal one. Any personal injury accidents such as a trip-and-fall or damage to a vehicle might be grounds for a lawsuit. If a pothole or other asphalt hazard leads to an injury, the owner and management company can be held financially responsible for substandard pavement conditions. However, the opposite can hold true as well – if you can demonstrate that attention to timely asphalt repairs has been done, this can help your defense against any such lawsuits.

As the pavement ages, the more likely you will be faced with repairing asphalt in your parking lot. Surface breaks of any kind allow moisture below the surface, where it undermines the integrity of the pavement. The liquid asphalt that binds the materials together begins to lose its natural resistance to water, allowing it to penetrate beneath the surface. Once this occurs the pavement can quickly fall prey to several different types of deterioration including cracks and potholes. Asphalt repairs and prevention will increase the longevity of any asphalt surface. Sealing asphalt cracks can also be beneficial.

Avoid Costly Replacement

Before you experience a costly asphalt replacement, have an experienced asphalt contractor walk your parking area and make an assessment. Keeping up with regular parking lot maintenance, sealcoating, and filling potholes can help avert costly damage and repairs.

Whether you are a facility manager for a hospital, shopping center, grocery store, apartment complex, school, big box store, arena, or other venue, asphalt repairs should be part of your parking lot maintenance plan. It just takes minutes to have a professional paving contractor walk your parking area and make recommendations – those minutes can sometimes save you thousands.