Just as asphalt roadways can develop severe potholes, cracks, and other forms of deterioration without regular upkeep, so can your business’s asphalt parking lot. That’s why budgeting for routine asphalt maintenance and repairs is so important.
Over the long term, being proactive about parking lot maintenance will help you keep your pavement-related expenses as low as possible. Tending to routine asphalt repairs and upkeep will also help maximize your parking lot's performance, appearance, and utility.
Not sure how to budget for your business’s long-term parking lot maintenance? Check out our helpful tips below.
Assess the Condition of Your Parking Lot
Performing a pavement assessment will alert you to any potential asphalt issues you may need to address presently or in the future. Whether your parking lot is relatively new or well-aged, a condition assessment is essential for estimating projected costs associated with several issues that may arise – or already have.
So how do you administer an assessment? You’ve got a few options:
While you can certainly perform a preliminary DIY pavement assessment to get an idea of what your asphalt will require, ultimately, you’ll need to schedule a professional evaluation. Having expert insight into the current condition of your parking lot will help you better budget for its immediate maintenance needs, as well as potential issues that may need attention down the road. Schedule a free consultation with our team.
Each year, take a walk around your asphalt pavement and ponder the following:
What color is the asphalt?
What is the condition of the pavement markings (parking lines, crosswalks, arrows, etc.)?
Are there any potholes?
Is there cracking that is ¼” or wider?
Is there crumbling asphalt?
Is there alligator or checkerboard cracking?
Is there rutting?
Is there standing water after rainfall?
Assume It’s Best to Invest Long Term in Asphalt Maintenance
When budgeting for asphalt projects, there can be an initial shock on just how much it costs. The price of producing and hauling asphalt can get expensive. Because of this, it can be tempting to just put a “band-aid” on the project until more money can be secured.
However, a quick fix isn’t always the best option. Completing a maintenance project the right way the first time may be expensive on the front end but will save you substantial money in later years.
Just filling potholes may not be the best maintenance option because there may be an underlying reason why potholes keep forming. By filling them, you’re not solving the problem.
Address Any Immediate Maintenance Concerns
If your pavement assessment reveals any asphalt problems needing immediate attention, handle them promptly. Even minor issues can easily grow more severe in a single season, and waiting to address them will inevitably lead to more costly future repairs.
Generally speaking, if your parking lot currently has any of the following issues, you should tend to them as soon as possible.
Fissures in your asphalt can allow water and debris to penetrate beneath the surface and cause considerable damage. Cracksealing involves a rubberized sealant that prevents damaging substances from migrating into the pavement’s aggregate base layer.
Holes in your parking lot can be a serious hazard to your customers and threaten the integrity of the surrounding pavement. Asphalt patching can provide a temporary or long-term solution for addressing potentially hazardous pavement areas and preventing further moisture- and debris-related deterioration.
Water is a natural enemy of pavement. If your parking lot accumulates standing water or its existing water drainage system needs repairs, address these issues promptly. Pooling water can damage the parking lot by deteriorating the asphalt and allowing moisture to percolate into the pavement.
Once moisture leaches into the pavement, the water will begin degrading the asphalt binder, which can encourage cracking, additional water intrusion, and further damage.
Budget for Future Asphalt Maintenance & Repairs
How much money should you allocate for asphalt maintenance? There’s really no definitive answer since your parking lot is unique, as are its potential issues.
Your business’s budget for parking lot repairs and maintenance depends on several factors, including:
The age of your parking lot
The present condition of your asphalt
Whether your parking lot has drainage issues
Whether you plan to enhance or expand your parking lot in the future
Asphalt Maintenance Projects to Prioritize
As a general rule, you’ll want to set aside funds to perform the following types of asphalt maintenance:
Cracksealing at two- to three-year intervals
Patching fatigue cracks at four- to six-year intervals
Patching potholes whenever they develop
Pavement milling and overlaying at eight- to 12-year intervals
Sealcoating or emulsion at four-year intervals
Keep in mind that the above figures aren’t specific to your business’s parking lot. You may need to adjust your asphalt maintenance and repair intervals depending on the speed at which your pavement deteriorates over time.
Contact Bituminous Roadways for an Asphalt Inspection
Bituminous Roadways has been performing asphalt pavement maintenance since 1946. Our expert estimating crew will help you assess your asphalt pavement, recommend an appropriate action plan, and execute the necessary maintenance and repairs.
Call us today at 651-686-7001 to schedule a site visit in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area or request a consultation here.