Year-round tips in maintaining driveways

The Art of Driveway Maintenance

When it comes to keeping your driveway in top condition, few things help as much as basic driveway maintenance. While steps may differ depending on driveway type, the principals are the same for most driveways. These tips in maintaining driveways will help to keep your driveway looking its best during every season.

Winter Tips in Maintaining Driveways

Check your edging. During the winter months, your driveway might be exposed to frequent freezing and thawing cycles. This will cause your driveway to expand and contract slightly. These changes can cause wear on your edging. Make sure it is in good condition before winter to prevent damage. Seal or repair any cracks or chips in your driveway. The expansion and contraction of your driveway during winter can turn even the smallest chips or cracks into large cracks and holes. Seal your driveway with a proper asphalt or concrete sealer and replace any chipped or broken paving stones.

Keep snow and ice clear from the driveway. This will help prevent potential ice damage and increase the overall safety of your driveway. Pavement, concrete and asphalt driveways can typically be safely plowed with a rubbed-edged plow blade or snow blower. For gravel driveways, care should be taken not to disturb the gravel. Manual snow removal with a shovel, rake or leaf blower is recommended.

Spring Tips in Maintaining Driveways

Watch for water pooling. This can be one of the first signs that the substrate of your driveway is worn or damaged. If allowed to progress, this can result in cracking and sinkholes. Reduce the chances of substrate wear with proper sealing and edging.

Check the sand or grout used in your driveway. By keeping all seams full heading into spring, you reduce the chances for weed or plant growth. When seams are left unfilled, they can collect moisture and seeds. This will lead to a summer of manual weed removal.

Clean the surface of your driveway. This is of particular importance in climates that use chemical de-icing. Using a deck brush and clean water or a pressure washer, clean any accumulation from your driveway. Check your driveway’s seal. Depending on the type of driveway you have, sealants might need to be applied annually or bi-annually. In general, asphalt requires bi-annual sealing, while concrete or pavement might require annual sealing.

Summer Tips in Maintaining Driveways

Watch for plant growth. If allowed to progress, not only is the growth unsightly, it can damage the substrate of your driveway and wear on the edges of plates or tiles. Clean the surface of your driveway regularly. With increased temperature and sunlight exposure, anything left on the surface of your driveway can stain it easily. Use a pressure washer or a deck broom and clean water to remove soiling regularly and prevent staining.

Autumn Tips in Maintaining Driveways

Keep driveway clear of debris. As the leaves fall and rain increases, your driveway will be susceptible to staining and discoloration. By keeping the driveway clear, you not only decrease the chances of staining or moss growth, but increase safety as well.

Check the surface of your driveway. With winter approaching, any cracks or chips now can lead to big repairs in the winter. Stay proactive and repair them in the fall to prevent this.