When can you expect sealcoating to dry?
Asphalt paving is an excellent option for parking lots. It is easy to install and kinder to the environment. It is cheaper than concrete and yet, lasts for 20 to 30 years. Still, all the advantages of asphalt are accessible only with proper care. At the core of effective parking lot maintenance is asphalt sealcoating.
While the importance of sealcoating is undeniable, it does raise a few questions. How does it help with asphalt parking lot maintenance? When is the ideal time to apply it? More importantly, how long does it take for sealcoat to dry?
To fully appreciate the impact of sealcoating in asphalt repair and maintenance, let us answer all these questions one by one.
Why is Sealcoating Essential in Asphalt Parking Lot Maintenance?
Asphalt is porous by nature and susceptible to the elements. Moisture can seep into the spaces within the asphalt paving and cause premature deterioration. Even oils, excess grease, and gasoline dripping from vehicles can soften the asphalt.
Sealcoating parking lots helps protect the surface from all these elements. The sealer creates an impervious barrier that prevents moisture, oil, and other fluids from penetrating and doing damage. It also helps protect the parking lot from extreme temperatures and the sun’s UV rays.
Aside from its practical purposes, sealcoating also has aesthetic benefits. While it may not cure existing cracks, it will help prevent their formation in the first place. It extends the life of asphalt paving, keeping it smooth and fresh-looking for a longer period.
When Should Asphalt Sealcoating Be Applied?
Before we ask how long it takes for sealcoating to dry, it is important to know when to apply it. The timing of asphalt sealcoating has a direct impact on the drying time of the sealer applied.
The time it takes for sealcoating to dry depends heavily on heat, humidity, sunlight, and wind conditions. As such, the ideal time for sealcoating would be dictated by weather conditions. In fact, anticipating the weather is one of the toughest jobs for most contractors, especially in places where the weather is unpredictable.
As a rule, the best time for asphalt sealcoating is during spring and summer. This is true even in Florida, which is close to the equator and receives stronger sunlight.
Humidity is low during the spring and summer months, which means that the air is more likely to absorb moisture from its surroundings. It is also during this time of the year when both ambient and surface temperatures are ideal for faster evaporation.
The presence of the sun will ensure that heat is constantly created and renewed, maintaining the ideal conditions for curing. Finally, the wind will help replenish the saturated air over a newly sealed parking lot.
Most sealcoating services will recommend sealcoating your asphalt parking lot during spring or summer. Nevertheless, they have developed a system and technique for effective sealcoating for less ideal times of the year.
How Long Does It Take for Sealcoat to Dry?
If you apply sealcoating during the spring or summer, it is typically safe to walk over the surface after three or four hours. This applies to ideal conditions where there is no shade, and the sun is at its peak. Another 24 hours and you should be able to drive on the newly sealed asphalt paving. To be safer, allow 48 hours to pass.
If the air is humid and the weather is cloudy, another day of curing is highly recommended. Additionally, around 30 days is needed for the sealer to be totally dry. During the first month, you must be mindful of harsh chemicals spilling on the surface.
So, how long does it take for sealcoat to dry? The answer depends on the weather and what activities you expect. Walking on the asphalt paving is acceptable after three to four hours. Driving is safe after one to three days. After one month, your newly sealed parking lot will be able to stand up to harsh elements and vigorous activities.
Contact ACPLM for Asphalt Sealcoating Services in Tampa
If your parking lot needs sealcoating, repairs, or other general maintenance, contact ACPLM today. Our team will inspect your parking lot and provide a no-cost consultation for sealcoating and other services. Contact us for your free consultation now!