Springtime rain can be refreshing and rejuvenating; but while rain provides great hydration for your outdoor space and flowers, heavy rainfalls can really do a number on your asphalt parking lot. If you’ve been neglecting to implement proper and necessary protective measures for your property, then you may have a great deal of potentially expensive asphalt damages on your hands come summertime.
Over time, excessive rain water can start to pool in various parts of your parking lot which can cause dips, depressions, cracking, erosion, and internal structural damage. Surface damages are easier and more affordable to fix than internal damages which could warrant asphalt pavement parking lot overhauls. To avoid this kind of costly but necessary repair, it’s vital that you take good care of your asphalt pavement all year round, particularly in the spring.
What Problems are Caused by Excessive Water Exposure to Your Parking Lot?
Standing or pooling water is a big problem for your asphalt parking lot. If you’re noticing an increasing number of small or large puddles throughout your property, then it’s time to take action because that’s a major sign of potential structural damage or weakening. Puddles are more harmful than you think, so it’s important not to underestimate their impact on your parking lot.
The longer you let water collect in various parts of your parking lot, the heavier it becomes and the more it’ll weigh down the asphalt, putting large amounts of pressure on the structure. This can lead to a plethora of issues.
Here are a few asphalt pavement problems caused by excessive rainwater exposure or buildup on your parking lot.
You already know that cracking is bad for your asphalt pavement. But did you know that excessive amounts of water can be a direct cause of cracking? When water pools in certain parts of your parking lot, it means that there are few things wrong: the structure is weak or compromised and the water has nowhere to go due to a damaged or poorly installed drainage system
What happens to rainwater that has nowhere to go? It begins to pool. Eventually, that water will weigh down the asphalt, creating large dips or depressions in the pavement. The longer the water stays on the asphalt, the lower the asphalt will sink and eventually, the water will erode the surface of the asphalt and create a tunnel effect beneath the surface.
Cracks can easily spread throughout your property. A crack-littered asphalt parking lot doesn’t just lower your overall property value, but it’s also an eyesore for potential customers and it shows that you don’t take good care of your business.
Potholes are a direct result of neglecting to repair minor cracks or failing to properly maintain your asphalt pavement over time. The longer you neglect to fix cracks, the more likely they are to form into massive and destructive potholes.
Not only are potholes incredibly unsightly, but they can also pose a great danger to motorists and pedestrians who use your parking lot. Additionally, potholes can cause vehicular damage. All of this can put you in potentially significant legal hot water with anyone who uses your parking lot, especially if someone suffers an injury as a direct result of your negligence to maintain your property. And the longer you neglect to fill or repair a pothole, the larger it’ll get and more water and debris will penetrate the surface of your pavement.
Over time, as the pavement gets more and more use and is frequented by heavy vehicular traffic, the binder that keeps the asphalt together can begin to loosen and weaken. Pieces of asphalt will eventually begin to break off, creating a shallow pothole in certain trouble spots where the structural integrity has been compromised or where the asphalt was poorly applied. Divots are usually a sign that the asphalt in that particular part of the pavement parking lot wasn’t properly compacted and secured in place, leading to what’s known in the industry as a weak spot.
Unfortunately, there’s no way to identify a weak spot prior to signs of damages appearing, so it’s important to ensure that the asphalt pavement is properly applied from the very beginning and that it’s properly maintained throughout its lifespan.
How to Prevent Damages Caused by Spring Rain
In many parts of Ontario, heavy rain falls and storms aren’t uncommon during the spring. For that reason, it’s highly important that you take all necessary precautions to prevent the rain and water buildup from damaging your asphalt pavement parking lot. Here are a few things you can do:
Implement Proper Pavement Maintenance
First and foremost, you need to implement proper pavement maintenance on a regular basis. Once a month, you should take the time to thoroughly inspect your asphalt pavement parking lot. Look for potential trouble spots like pooling water, dips, depressions, minor cracks, potholes, and asphalt breakage. Make sure to repair all of these damages as soon as you notice them.
Install a High-Quality Drainage System
Having a proper, high-quality, and reliable drainage system in place is imperative when it comes to protecting your asphalt parking lot and extending its lifespan. Water runoff needs to go somewhere, so most contractors will try to direct it toward the nearest greenery or grassy areas on the property. That way, there’s very little water waste and it won’t pool on your asphalt.
Sealcoating is an essential aspect of regular asphalt pavement maintenance and it should be done at least once every 2-3 years. Not only does sealcoating protect your property from external elements like harmful UV rays from the sun, water damage, and vehicular damage; but it can also extend the longevity of your asphalt pavement by about 20 years.
If you’re not able to apply these practices yourself, then the professional asphalt contractors at Sure-Seal Pavement Maintenance Inc. can do it for you. We have over 20 years of experience working in the asphalt industry and have installed, repaired, and maintained countless commercial and residential asphalt pavements across Toronto and the GTA. Book your consultation today!