At Brothers Paving, we specialize in paving, stoning, grading, and other paving services. One of the services we provide to our local customers across Maryland is seal coating and repair. Not all of our customers know what seal coating is, or why it’s important, so here’s a short breakdown of seal coating from the experts.
Sealcoating is also known as pavement sealing. The process involves applying two layers of protective coating to clean and dry asphalt or pavement that has been properly prepped to receive the sealant, and then waiting 24 to 48 hours before vehicles or pedestrians can be allowed back on the pavement.
Simply put, seal coat is a mixture of liquids and small particle solids (like grains of sand) that provide protective and restorative qualities for asphalt pavements. It’s usually made up of varying amounts of dissolved asphalt, mineral fillers, and water, and is applied as a spray or with a squeegee or broom.
Sealcoat is specifically engineered using oils and materials that are commonly used in asphalt paving. When it’s applied to the surface of asphalt pavement, oils in the seal coat seep down and help replenish some of the depleted asphalt oils and binder that have dried up over time. At the same time, the tiny asphalt, sand, and mineral particles fill in small cracks and gaps between the pieces of aggregate, making the pavement surface more even and level.
Why It Is Necessary To Seal Coat Your Pavement
Asphalt pavement is made up of 95% aggregate, or small gravel and sand particles. Only the other 5% is actually asphalt (also known as bitumen), which is the black, oily, and sticky substance that binds the gravel and sand particles together. When pavement is new, the asphalt oils are fresh and pliable, making the pavement flexible. Over time, the oil oxidizes, or dries up, which makes the asphalt less flexible and more brittle. Additionally, the reduced volume of asphalt binder causes the tiny gravel particles on the surface to be exposed and eventually work their way loose from the pavement (referred to as raveling).
When seal coat is applied, the asphalt oils are reintroduced, restoring some of the pavement’s original flexibility. Sealcoat also covers and protects the exposed aggregate, and prevents raveling.
With the oils replenished and the cracks and gaps filled in, the asphalt pavement frequently looks almost like new pavement. The seal coat also provides a protective barrier between the asphalt pavement and harmful elements like UV rays from the sun, water, chemicals, and abrasion from traffic.
Sealcoating is a good way to protect your pavement, old or new, from oil stains, water damage from weather, and U.V. damage that will fade the color of your pavement.
Some concerns regarding the environmental impact of seal coating have been coming to light in recent years, so Brothers Paving works hard to ensure that they are responsible in their application of seal coating. We take great pains to avoid getting seal coat on any surface other than the pavement we are working on to protect your property and the environment.
For seal coating that is effective and responsible, contact Brothers Paving today.