When considering an asphalt maintenance technique such as asphalt cracksealing, there are a wide variety of environmental factors to take into consideration. Winter is certainly the most taxing season on any type of asphalt pavement, as the frigid temperatures force the asphalt to quickly contract, trapping frozen water below the pavement and causing cracking and frost heaving to occur.

When the snow starts to melt and we see the first signs of spring, it may feel urgent to begin cracksealing your parking lot right away. However, moving forward too quickly before warmer temperatures truly settle in can prove costly for unforeseen asphalt repair work.

Let’s take a closer look at how soon you should crackseal your parking lot after winter, as well as why professional asphalt cracksealing is crucial for extending the service life of your asphalt.

Is Spring Too Soon for Cracksealing Asphalt?

Spring can be a tricky season when it comes to assessing the best time to crackseal your asphalt parking lot, because weather conditions can be somewhat unpredictable in Minnesota.

Most local contractors agree that March is way too soon to begin cracksealing your parking lot. Snow and cold temperatures are just too common in Minnesota throughout the month of March, when the average amount of days experiencing snowfall is seven and the average high temperature is just 41 degrees.

Waiting until April makes a big difference; There’s an average of four days of snowfall and an average high of 58 degrees!

The Best Time to Crackseal Asphalt Pavement

The general rule of thumb to start cracksealing your asphalt parking lot is commonly listed as anytime after April 15. This time of year tends to allow for warmer temperatures to acclimate, as well as can yield less rainfall compared to the first two weeks of April.

Waiting until at least May 1 is a safe bet to err on the side of caution. Generally speaking, you want to crackseal your parking lot when temperatures are consistently above 50 degrees.

It’s also important to keep an eye out on the forecast for longer stretches of rainy conditions as  cracksealing can not be done when it’s raining. However, this is something your asphalt contractor should be looking at when scheduling the work.

The Importance of Cracksealing Your Parking Lot

Cracks and potholes in your pavement are only going to cause more problems in the long run if not immediately addressed. When spring comes and snow begins to melt while rainfall increases, cracksealing and pothole patching are crucial in preventing water infiltration.

The more your unsealed asphalt parking lot is exposed to water, the greater the odds of experiencing long term deterioration, specifically with water moving into cracks and potentially infiltrating the aggregate base and sub base materials.

Here’s why professional cracksealing is important!

Uniform Sealing of Cracks

Routing, a process performed prior to sealing the cracks, is performed using equipment that expands all cracks to a fourth of an inch wide, creating a reservoir for a rubberized crack sealant to fill up.

Better Adhesion

For optimal adhesion, crackseal crews will route and thoroughly clean out the cracks, prior to putting the rubber sealant down.

Waterproof Protection

After routing is complete, hot rubber is installed into the reservoirs, penetrating cracks while creating a waterproof seal that will prevent water from infiltrating the space.

3 Other Spring Maintenance Tasks for Asphalt

Along with cracksealing, you can repair your asphalt after winter conditions and prepare it for the rest of the year by completing a couple other spring maintenance services.

Our team suggests these three additional asphalt maintenance steps.

1. Patching

Patching repairs asphalt deterioration in one area. When potholes form in a localized spot, a surface patch is one repair option. Fixing potholes immediately helps prevent safety hazards and decreases water from penetrating deeper into the base layer materials.

2. Sealcoating

Approximately every 3-7 years, asphalt needs a sealcoat. This service extends the lifespan of the asphalt by slowing down the oxidation process.

3. Overlays

Overlays are recommended when the asphalt is around eight or more years old. This service adds a new layer of asphalt  creating a stronger, more long-lasting product. It also gives the asphalt an updated look as it will appear more black with the freshly installed asphalt.

Get Your Asphalt Professionally Cracksealed By BR

Once spring has officially settled in, it’s time to start sealing any cracks to ensure your parking lot remains in pristine condition all year long. If your parking lot is in need of

 asphalt maintenance , contact the professionals at Bituminous Roadways to get started immediately on quality cracksealing work!

Feel free to give us a call at 651-686-7001 to speak directly with one of our asphalt maintenance experts, or visit the website to complete a free consultation form.