Over time your paved driveway may settle, crack, and even develop potholes or low spots that have to be repaired. While asphalt is very durable, it will weather and were over time. There are some thing you can do to keep it looking nice but you may need to repair imperfections before you can move on to the maintenance.
Inspecting Your Driveway For Damage
The best way to get a good look at the driveway is to sweep it all off with a stiff broom then hose it down to remove sand, silt, or dirt from the surface. Let the driveway dry thoroughly then take a look at the surface. You are, looking for cracks, or missing asphalt that might need to be repaired. Look closely at the entire driveway, not just sections of it. You don't want to miss anything that might need to be repaired.
Filling Cracks and Holes
If you have cracks that need to be filled, You can buy a commercial crack filler at most home centers and hardware stores that will work very well. The filler is in a bottle and is poured into the cracks then the top smoothed over. Once the crack is filled, let the filler cure according to the directions on the bottle. If you have larger holes, you will need cold patch to fill them. The crack filler will not work for that. Cold patch is also available at most home centers and id basically cold but pliable asphalt that you can fill in the hols with. Once the material is in the hole, you will need to tamp the cold patch down so it is packed tightly in and will support a car driving over it.
Hiring A Contractor
If you are not able to get the supplies need to do the repairs, contact a residential paving contractor to come in and take car of the work for you. It will be more expensive to have the repair done this way but the work will be a higher quality and when they are done, the driveway should last many years to come. After looking at the driveway, the contractor may determine that there are other issues like the ground under the asphalt that is causing the damage and may recommend replacing the driveway completely.
Sealing The Driveway
Once the driveway has been repaired, it is a good idea to seal it with a commercial driveway sealer every year. This will help protect the driveway and the ground underneath it from damage in the future. Sealing the driveway takes a few hours and will require you to stay off it with cars for several days but it will reduce the likelihood that the driveway will need to be repaired again for a long time. Pick a day in the early fall so the driveway can cure in the warm air and you get the work done before the winter weather comes in.