Information
  • Asphalt Sealcoating: Spraying vs. Brushing

    It is a common question amonst home owners and property managers alike: "Should my asphalt sealing company spay or brush the sealing material ?" This informative collection of information will answer this age old question. Asphalt sealcoating can be performed in a variety of ways. Some companies brush, some squeegee and others spray the material. Most of the companies stand behind their chosen method and can attemp to build a case as to why their asphalt sealing method is the best. The following information will add factual clarity to the on-going debate.


    The vast majority of sealcoating companies use the brushing method. You see their ads that tout "hand brushed" or "we never spray". These companies inform the customer that brushing the sealcoat is the only way to seal asphalt. The fact that the asphalt is covered with a thicker application of sealer is the main reason that supports their claim. They are 100% correct in their claim that more sealcoat material is used. However, aplying sealcoating material thicker is almost never better. A thicker asphalt sealing application has a hard time curing correctly. This extended curing time leads to the degradation of the sealer, which in turn, drastically reduces the expected life cycle of the sealcoating job.


    Another drawback from brushing the asphalt sealcoat material is the fact that the natural porous state of the pavement is compromised. A thicker application will fill in the natural grooves of the pavement, which leads to a "slick" and "slippery" surface after the sealcoating application is completed. If a contractor uses sand, this helps to restore the traction that is compromised. Unfortunately, the vast majority of brushing contractors do not ever attempt to put sand into their material. You might ask: "Why doesn't every asphalt sealing contractor place sand into their sealcoating material ?" The answer to that question will give you a little insight to the typical brushing contractor. The number one reason most brushing contractors do not add sand to their sealcoat material is that they do not own the proper equipment. They know that it is the right thing to do, but they refuse to purchase the proper sealcoating equipment that will keep the sand suspended into the sealcoat material. To compensate for the inability to do the right thing, which is to use sand, they will tell the consumer that sand is not needed. If you hear this claim, just know that you are dealing with either a not so honest (lying) contractor or an un-educated contractor. Remember, any person with a bucket of asphalt sealer and brush can enter the business. So buyer beware of the "fly by night" contractors misrepresenting themselves as professional asphalt maintenance contractors.


    Sorry for delving off onto a tangent, back to another reason brushing is inferior to spray asphalt sealcoating material. When a brush job starts to fade, the asphalt is left with very unsightly brush marks. Also the asphalt takes on a checkered look. This checkered appearance is the direct result of the way that the sealer is applied. The brushing contractor applies the asphalt sealer with side to side sweeps from one edge to the other. The results are the same as the appearance of a lawn that was just mowed. Although the same grass was cut, it takes on a checkered appearance because the grass was cut into seperate directions. The next time you drive through your neighborhood take notice to the diveways or parking lots that were sealed with a brush. You will see the checkered pattern brush mark appearance. Another factor to consider is too much sealer on your asphalt will lead to surface cracks. Don't ever have your asphalt sealed more than every 3 years. Many brushing contractors will attempt to have you seal every year or every two years. This practice is not in your best interest, it only helps the asphalt sealcoating contractor.


    The only reason anyone should have their asphalt sealcoated by a brush is if their asphalt has a lot of surface cracks. By brushing the sealcoat material into the cracks, it will perform a better job at hiding the small surface cracks (spider cracks). Usally these spider cracks are a direct result from brushing the asphalt sealer to begin with. Let me distinguish at this point the difference between a spider crack and a regular crack. A spider crack is a crack that is less than 1/8" in width and a regular crack is 1/8" or wider. Never try to fill your regular cracks with asphalt sealcoating material. Instead, these cracks should be treated with a ruberized crack sealing material. Which leads to another point, beware of the contractor that does not provide asphalt crack sealing as one of their asphalt maintenance services. Crack sealing is imperative to a quality asphalt maintenance service, as it prevents water from penetrating to under the surface of the asphalt. This water penetration is what leads to the deterioration of the asphalt.


    Now that many reasons have been discussed about why not to brush asphalt sealcoating material, let's take a look at spraying sealer. The following attributes are why we recommend that asphalt be sealed by the spraying method. 1. Spray jobs last longer. Period!!!! 2. Spray jobs apply the sealer evenly which helps with proper curing. 3. No unsightly brush marks. 4. Does not reduce the traction of the asphalt. 5. It is the method used by the reputable contractors.


    One of the main concerns that I hear from customer's is that they fear that the spray method will get asphalt sealer on their property. This is a well founded concern, as we always say "the sealer goes on faster than it comes off." With this being said, the asphalt contractor must be very careful to "cut in" the areas that are adjacent to any surface that should be avoided. PS&LS will only use a brush for the "cut in" process. Then we spray away from any structure into the "cut in" area. This method ensures that the sealer is applied where it is supposed to be, "THE ASPHALT." If after reading this article and you are still not convinced that spraying is not superior to brushing, we would be glad to come out to brush your asphalt any way. Our company does have experience with brushing sealer, but we do not recommend it. Putting all of the technicalities aside, being an experienced reputable asphalt sealcoating contractor, I have seen spray jobs last years longer than brush jobs.

  • Crack Sealing

    Crack sealing is the most important first step in maintaining an asphalt pavement, but is often the most overlooked. All cracks in concrete or asphalt surfaces can rapidly turn into major hazards. Water seeps into the subsurface; it freezes, thaws, and refreezes causing the subsoil to expand and contract. Soon the area around the crack rapidly deteriorates and what could have been a small maintenance step has turned into a costly repair project.

  • ColorPave HD

    ColorPave HD is a 100 percent acrylic premium colorized pavement coating designed to bring new life and color to pavement surfaces. ColorPave HD 500 is designed to protect and beautify asphalt pavement surfaces, including roadways, streets, driveways, parking lots, walk-ways, golf cart paths and amusement parks. It is available in a variety of colors, some of which contribute toward LEED credits. ColorPave HD also is an environmentally friendly, 100 percent acrylic emulsion coating.


    ColorPave HD 500 Neutral Base is a self-priming 100 percent acrylic water-based emulsion designed for high durability pavement color coatings. Its unique cross-linking technology provides durability similar to hot melt thermoplastics and epoxies. ColorPave HD 500 is fortified with sand to provide slip resistance and added traction for both pedestrian and vehicle traffic. It is supplied in a neutral color, but designed to be mixed with ColorPave HD Tint to achieve the desired color.


    How does it work?

    ColorPave HD 500 Neutral Base is a self-priming 100 percent acrylic water-based emulsion designed for high durability pavement color coatings. Its unique cross-linking technology provides durability similar to hot melt thermoplastics and epoxies. ColorPave HD 500 is fortified with sand to provide slip resistance and added traction for both pedestrian and vehicle traffic. It is supplied in a neutral color, but designed to be mixed with ColorPave HD Tint to achieve the desired color.


    Benefits

    • 100% acrylic coatings
    • Nine earthtone colors
    • Ideal for driveways, walkways, cart/jogging paths, parking areas, etc.
    • Fortified with aggregate for slip resistance and durability
  • Tennis Court Resurfacing

    The most common problem with asphalt tennis courts is cracking. Cracking is caused, in part, by asphalt's natural tendency to shrink as it weathers and ages. In addition, asphalt loses its flexibility and becomes more brittle over time. Since outdoor tennis courts are also exposed to temperature extremes that cause expansion and contraction, cracking is inevitable almost without exception. Quality design and construction may minimize or delay cracking but it cannot completely eliminate it. Once cracks appear, it may be impossible to repair their cause, but it is not impossible to repair the cracks themselves. We only use the best quality materials.

  • What does it cost to have my driveway sealed?

    The short answer is that it depends. With driveway sealing, there are enough factors to consider that it is difficult to zero in on a price for every different type of driveway in every city. What we can do is provide you with some guidelines so that you know how to figure the approximate driveway sealing costs of your particular home and how often you should have it sealed. We will answer the two most common questions when it comes to determining sealing a driveway.


    Driveway sealing costs are going to be different all across the country because of the demand. In New Mexico, the average driveway sealing cost may be higher because the weather conditions don't demand that it to be done that often. While we can't really pin down your exact price, here are some general estimates that should help get you in the ballpark on the cost of driveway sealing.


    First, if you don't already know the square footage of your driveway, measure it to find out. Most contractors are going to figure the job by the driveway size. Now that you have the square footage, here are some figures. In the east, the average cost for driveway sealing is typically .13-.19 a square ft with commercial jobs bidding at .08-.13 cents and most companies have a minimum.


    Final Word Most of the cost of sealing driveways is tied up in prep work. If your driveway is particularly dirty or covered in oil slicks, then it takes more effort and thus costs more to treat. The application is pretty standard. However, the pricing listed above will help you to figure out the range of what this task should cost. If you talk to a driveway contractor who is way over these amounts, get a few more estimates to see if that is the standard charge in your area. Remember that proper maintenance saves money in the long run. You spend a little now to extend the life of your driveway. New driveways are way more expensive than multiple regular

  • How Often Should You Seal Asphalt Driveways?

    If you look around the web you will find differing opinions on this matter. Some say that you only need to seal your asphalt drive every 3-10 years. Others, every year. The real difficulty in determining what's right for you is weather. If you are in an area where you receive a great deal of rain and snow, or in an area where it freezes and thaws often, or in an area where the temperature reaches well over 100 degrees in the summer and your driveway is unprotected from the brutal rays of the sun, then you need to seal your driveway at least every other year. If you have some moderate weather, then maybe every three years.

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