Asphalt Seal Coat
What is a sealcoat?
Sealcoat is a liquid mixture of emulsified asphalt, water, mineral fillers and various other products. This mix is applied directly to asphalt pavement as a protection from oxidation and the damage caused by winter cracking. It also serves to protect against UV rays and deterioration due to traffic.
What are benefits of Sealcoating?
Sealcoating is needed in colder climates due to the freezing and thawing nature of seasonal changes. As the asphalt expands and contracts it can develop cracks which exacerbate aging and wear. Sealcoating is useful in warmer and wetter climates as well as it protects against water and other liquid entering the porous and weakened spaces in the surface. Since asphalt is a petroleum product, other petroleum products will react with the surface including vehicle oil and gasoline. A sealcoat will act as a barrier against the destructive nature of those materials. Since a sealcoat is not sufficient to fill cracks you must apply crack seal prior to applying the sealcoat. When applied properly, sealcoat can save you significant costs over the life of a hot mix asphalt pavement.
What kinds of sealcoat are there?
There are primarily three types of asphalt sealers. They are coal-tar, asphalt emulsions and acrylics. Each has its advantages but are typically chosen by the contractors’ preference .
Should I sealcoat my pavement?
Maintenance such as sealcoating will extend the life of your asphalt pavement up to 30 years. New asphalt surfaces that are sealcoated within their first year and reapplied regularly will experience less degradation from UV damage, water and traffic. Sealcoated asphalt can be preserved for many more years extending the life and reducing the lifetime costs of your asphalt paved surface..
When should I sealcoat?
Generally you should wait a few months before sealing new pavement to allow it time to cure. A 6-12 month wait before sealcoating new pavement is typical. After a surface has been sealed it should be re-sealed every 3-4 years or as necessity dictates. In areas of the world that experience heavy freezing and thawing, the reapplication timeline will likely be need to be more frequent.