Is your parking lot at risk if pavement sealer is not applied?
Sealcoating involves applying a protective layer of pavement sealer on asphalt surfaces. Sealer is an important part of preventive parking lot maintenance. Without it, your asphalt pavement will wear out faster, resulting in cracking and the creation of potholes.
Assuming your parking lot is paved properly, meaning the subgrade is sound and compacted, a proper base material is placed (correctly) and also compacted. Hot mix is applied to the surface (in the right amounts and thickness) and compacted as well. Parking lot sealcoating comes in to provide an added layer of protection from the endless destructive elements including sunlight, water, erosion, chemicals, oil spills, etc.
3 Dangers of Failing to Apply Pavement Sealer
The following are three things that will occur if you fail to apply a protective sealer on time or avoid parking lot sealcoating altogether:
Water is one of the biggest enemies of asphalt pavements, however unlikely it might seem. All parking lot pavement has small spaces between the composite materials. If the asphalt surface isn’t sealed, water particles can seep through these little gaps into the base and subgrade materials.
During the cold seasons, water freezes and expands. As the water inside the pavement expands, cracks will begin to develop. These cracks will allow even more water to seep into the pavement. Then the expansion and contraction will reoccur, this time to a larger volume of water, creating even bigger cracks. The process can go on forever. As a result, you may have large, water-filled cracks, potholes, and fissures in the parking lot.
Sealcoating creates a barrier that helps keep water particles out, thus preventing water pooling and cracking of pavements.
Oxidation is a molecular process where atoms, molecules, or ions, lose one or more electrons. It’s a fairly complex chemical process. What you need to know, however, is that when asphalt surfaces are exposed to sunlight (which comprises UV rays), oxidation occurs.
What’s the problem with this? Well, when asphalt surfaces lose electrons, the action triggers molecular processes that create new bonding sites and leave molecules moving around seeking new bonds. In asphalt pavements, this can cause asphalt molecules to bond with asphalt aggregate, creating stiff and brittle pavements that are prone to cracking and other forms of damage.
Applying pavement sealer slows down the oxidation process by creating a UV and sunlight-resistant layer on your asphalt pavements.
Loss of aesthetic appeal
Newly installed asphalt pavement is a beauty. The glossy, vibrant black color is not only gorgeous but also makes a strong first impression. For business establishments, it’s a feature you can’t afford to overlook.
However, you’ll notice that this rich, black appearance disappears quickly if an asphalt surface isn’t coated in a pavement sealer. There are a couple of reasons why. For one, weather elements, including rainwater and erosion, can quickly sweep away the shiny luster. Secondly, oil spills and oxidation can also cause various degrees of damage to the surface. Above all, asphalt fades. It naturally loses its color after a period of exposure to the elements.
A protective pavement sealer adds a rich black hue to the already black asphalt surface, significantly enhancing the aesthetic appeal of the parking lot.
ACPLM Can Help with Asphalt Sealcoating in Tampa
ACPLM is the preferred asphalt repair company in Tampa, Florida. We specialize in asphalt paving, concrete repair, pavement repair, and sealcoating. Contact us today for a no-cost consultation for sealcoating and general parking lot maintenance.