Why seal your asphalt driveway?
A standard 4 car asphalt driveway costs approximately $4000+hst to pave brand new. The reason for sealing asphalt is often misunderstood. It’s more of a rejuvenation process than sealing to prevent your driveway from cracking and therefore saving you a lot of money ($4000 average) to replace.
When asphalt is first paved it’s really dark black because it has oil in it. The oil in the asphalt repels water since they are opposite elements (similar to in science class when you mix an oil based liquid and a water based liquid and they separate in the jar). What happens after your driveway is freshly paved is after a couple of years it starts to lose the darkness and become grey. The reason this happens is because the sun evaporates the oil out of the driveway over the years drying it out. When your asphalt is grey this means it has no more oil left inside it and can’t repel water which allows the water to seep inside the asphalt. Unfortunately we have cold winters so if you don’t seal your driveway approximately every 2 years the water that gets in the driveway freezes over the winter (when water freezes it expands) causing pressure on the inside of the asphalt. Once enough winters go by and there’s enough pressure from the water expanding when it freezes then your Asphalt driveway weakens and begins to crack. What sealing does is it returns the oils into the asphalt so it can repel water and water can’t seep in your asphalt driveway. Sealing your Asphalt driveway once every 2 years is a relatively low cost service that can double the life of your driveway which can save you thousands of dollars by pushing back the average $4000 cost by expanding the lifespan of your current asphalt driveway.
So if you pay $4000 for a brand new driveway and assuming that driveway was paved properly with a solid base it should last you anywhere between 10-20 years before cracking. Sealing can double the life of the asphalt so it will last a lot longer! So if it costs you $180 once every 2 years to seal your driveway and that stretches your 10 year driveway lifespan even to 15 years that only costs you $900 over 10 years in maintenance and instead of having to pay out $4000 for a new install on the 10th year, your able to wait 5 more years or longer before having to replace it. Also it keeps your driveway looking really dark black all the time which is great for curb appeal and property value!