Sandstone Paving

Sandstone paving is a unique and aesthetically-pleasing way to enhance your patios and driveways. Of course, with so many different types of paving stones available, how can you know if sandstone is the right choice for you?

Sandstone is easy to install, simple to maintain, more sustainable than concrete, and looks great for tons of different applications, making it one of the most popular choices for driveways and patios.

Come with us as we discuss the ins and outs of sandstone paving so you can determine whether or not it is the right choice for you.

What Is Sandstone?

Sandstone is an ultra-common sedimentary rock that consists of clasts (or grains of materials, organic matters, and sand) that is anywhere from 0.06 to 2mm. 

People classify different forms of sandstone by clasts. There are three different grains that these clasts are typically divided into, including:

grain typeclast size
Fine-grains0.06 to 0.2mm
Mid-grains0.2 to 0.6mm
Coarse-grains0.6 to 2mm

There are also different categories that we divide our sandstone into based on their mineral composition:

  • Lithic Grains – These grains are made from sedimentary, metamorphic, and igneous rocks.
  • Feldspar Grains – These grains are made from Plagioclase feldspar or alkali.
  • Quartz Grains – These grains are predominantly made from quartz minerals and have the longest capacities of the bunch. 
Natural sandstone formation

Is Sandstone Good For Paving?

There are plenty of different types of natural stone that are great for paving, though people often use sandstone for exterior applications.

So, why is this?

Let’s look at a few reasons why so many homeowners are using sandstone for their outdoor paving applications.

Aesthetically Pleasing 

Sandstone comes in a wide range of hues and colors, allowing you to find one that fits in with your surroundings with ease. Each piece of sandstone is adorned with natural beauty. Whether you want a bit of contrast or cohesion with the surrounding area, sandstone allows for it.

You’ll find various grains and veins in different patterns and densities in the natural world. 

Great In Wet Areas

Sandstone is a porous stone, meaning it’s not the best option for areas that get wet often. However, if you seal your sandstone or give it a proper chemical treatment, you can use it around a swimming pool and enjoy a beautiful, non-slip surface. 

Sandstone comes with anti-skid properties thanks to its slightly rough texture, perfect for those who want a sturdier wet surface. 

Easy To Maintain

If you use proper surface treatments or sealants, it is easy to clean your sandstone. To wash away dirt, dust, and mild staining, you can use something as simple as plain water or a mild washing detergent. 

The beauty of sandstone compared to concrete is that it is composed of individual tiles or blocks, not a single, large entity. 

So, for example, if one of the tiles or blocks gets damaged, you can rip up the damaged piece without messing up the rest of the floor. Plus, it’s often very easy to match pieces, so you don’t have to have an eye sore in your outdoor space. 

Great For Stepping Stones

Because sandstone is durable, hard, and weather-resistant, it is a great choice for stepping stones in your landscape design. You can even decide to put your sandstone in highly trafficked areas without any worry. 

Sustainable and Renewable

Compared to concrete, sandstone is far more sustainable and environmentally friendly. Of course, there are a few additional manufacturing costs associated with shaping, packaging, and transporting sandstone, though if you’re looking to minimize your carbon footprint while beautifying your backyard, sandstone is one of the best choices around. 

Check out our sandstone vs. limestone paving guide for an in-depth comparison. 

A sandstone paving

Sandstone Paving In Driveways

Sandstone is great for driveways, as it is one of the most durable natural stones around. People will often use sandstone to build block pavers. Beyond the fact that sandstone looks great, it is very strong, allowing for heavy load-bearing. 

Sandstone Paving In Patios

People often use sandstone paving in patios, thanks to the fact that they offer tons of flexibility during the installation process. You can makeover your patio in any way you deem fit using any kind of sandstone that works for you.

One of the great things about sandstone is that it is ultra-malleable, allowing you to make intricate designs for your patio in your garden or backyard. You can also find sandstone that works with your budget, as there are many tiers of this wonderful material out there. 

Homeowners will often have their sandstone treated to make it glossy or semi-glossy. On the other hand, you might want a more natural look by maintaining the uneven and porous texture that your sandstone naturally comes with.

It’s difficult to find this type of natural look anywhere else!

Are Sandstone Patios Expensive?

Thanks to the fact that sandstone is a natural stone material, it is one of the least expensive paving options out there. On average, you will pay anywhere between $10 to $20 per square foot for your sandstone. 

Check out our article, How Much Does It Cost To Pave A Driveway, for more in-depth information on the costs you can expect. 

Different Types of Sandstone Paving

1. Riven Sandstone Paving

One of the best styles of sandstone paving for adding a rustic, textured feel to your space is riven sandstone paving. 

With riven sandstone paving, you get individual pieces of sandstone that range in terms of thickness. It’s very important that you lay these pieces of sandstone down carefully to make them properly aligned and stable. 

2. Calibrated Sandstone Paving

If you want to keep the thickness of your stones as consistent as possible, we highly recommend going with calibrated stone paving. This type of paving is very popular because it is the most uniform. Calibrated stone paving makes for a far more uniform cut. These stones are much easier to transport and lay down.

You’ll find that these types of slabs are 22mm in thickness, though the thickness can change if they are cut by hand. 

3. Sawn Sandstone Paving

Sawn sandstone paving, sometimes referred to as honed sandstone paving, will go through several unique processes to give you a modern aesthetic. 

These stones are cut using machines down to the nearest millimeter. The stones are then buffed, giving you the smoothest finish possible. If you’re working on a modern landscaping project, we highly recommend sawn sandstone paving.

A pavement made of rainbow sandstone

How Long Does Sandstone Paving Last?

One of the great things about sandstone is that it can last for many years if you take care of it, which is one of the reasons it has become so popular for outdoor applications. They don’t break very easily, allowing you to handle them effectively without worry. 

All you have to do is wipe or spray them down every now and then to make sure they stay shiny and clean. Compared to other types of natural stones, sandstone is one of the most reliable stones out there. 

Using Indian sandstone or rainbow sandstone and high-quality sealant, you can expect your sandstone to last anywhere from 30 to 50 years. On the other hand, if you use cheap quality materials and don’t take care of your sandstone, you can end up having to replace them in 2 to 10 years

Do You Need To Seal Sandstone Paving?

Unless there is a good reason for sealing your sandstone paving, we would not recommend it. We often see people botch their sealant jobs, ruining the natural look of the stone. Unfortunately, restoring your stone after you have already sealed it is impossible. You need to make sure that applying sealant is something you actually want to do. 

If you live in a place with inclement weather, including extreme heat, rain, or snow, sealing your sandstone paving can help protect it so that it lasts longer. It’s important to choose a sealer that suits the color of your sandstone and that you’re careful when reading your sealing directions. 

If you use a high-quality sealant, you should only need to reapply it every three years or so. 

You can pressure wash your sandstone paving

Can You Pressure Wash Sandstone Paving?

Because sandstone paving is naturally resistant to chemicals and erosion, it is one of the best for resisting pressure washing. You don’t have to worry about pressure washing damaging your sandstone material. 

However, if your stones weren’t laid correctly or are placed too close together, you might notice sudden dislodgement or movement when you spray them with high-pressure water. 

The good thing is that you won’t have to pressure wash very often, as sandstone does not stain very easily. Oils and moisture in the sandstone will eventually stain if you leave them sitting there for long periods, though if you’re diligent about cleaning and wiping your sandstone down, you shouldn’t have to worry about this. 

We recommend using a high-quality sealant to block out extraneous moisture.

Final Thoughts

As you can see, sandstone is one of the best options for outdoor applications, all thanks to its versatility, reliability, and ease of use. If you want to beautify your house with natural colors or create a safe, non-slip outdoor space, we highly recommend looking into using sandstone for your next project. 

Storm drain repair

Did you know you are responsible for storm drain repair as a property owner? Or that your business may be required to maintain storm drain components on your property? Public works and private property owners must work together to ensure a fully functioning storm drain sewer system. 

This guide covers eight essential elements of storm drain repair, cleaning, and replacement.

Storm drain repair is a crucial part of property ownership. Your storm sewer system serves the vital task of carrying rainfall and runoff water away from the street and common areas, helping to prevent flooding and assisting with general sanitation.

Learning your legal responsibilities to maintain parts of the storm drain system will be helpful when planning your maintenance schedule. Whether you choose to do it yourself or hire a professionalaccurate information can only help you.

Read on to learn:

  • How do storm drains work?
  • What part of the storm drain am I responsible for?
  • Storm drain pipe repair.
  • How do you fix a clogged storm drain?
  • The cost of repairing a storm drain.
  • Storm drain clog prevention.
  • Why you should trust a professional to repair your storm drain?
A storm drain that needs to be repaired

How do storm drains work?

Let’s start from the basics: To understand how storm drains work, you must first understand the difference between a few terms. While often lumped together and used interchangeably, storm drain, storm sewer, and catch basins all have different meanings. 

  • Catch basins are voids in the ground intended to collect rainfall and runoff surface water. 
  • Storm drains are one type of catch basin typically located roadside to catch storm runoff.
  • Storm sewers are the interconnected network of pipes to carry the water away to a treatment plant.

The storm drains on your street are connected to a catch basin. Rainfall and runoff water flow into the storm drain and collect in the catch basin. When the water level in the catch basin rises high enough, the water flows into the main sewer system. Storm drain systems are important because they help regulate the flow of additional water into the main sewer system, so it isn’t overwhelmed during heavy rainfall. 

What part of the storm drain am I responsible for? 

1. Know what you must maintain

In most places, as a private or commercial property owner, you are responsible for ensuring the portion of the storm drain or pipe on your property is properly maintained and functioning. City officials expect you to fix any broken or collapsed segments of the storm drain system on your property. 

If you notice the pavement in your asphalt parking lot sinking or flooding, your business property may have an issue with the catch basin. Proper drainage is vital to the longevity and health of any property. If your asphalt covers a broken, clogged, or leaking storm sewer or catch basin, there’s a good chance you will be hiring someone to dig up and repave your parking lot. 

Your city is responsible for repairing and maintaining all issues with storm pipes in the public right-of-way and keeping storm drains free of blockage. 

Storm drain pipe repair

A broken or cracked storm drain pipe will allow water to seep into the surrounding soil, eroding it and eventually creating a void and potentially causing flooding.

2. Find the best option for your repairs

There are multiple ways to address a broken storm drain pipe. In the past, the only option was to dig up the area around the leak and replace the whole structure. This method adds excavation costs and significant time to any repair projects. Many street storm drains are under asphalt pavement, and the area must be excavated, repaired, and repaved before the project is complete. 

Technology has led to the creation of a new method of trenchless pipe repair which rebuilds pipes from the inside out using a specialized epoxy resin and a flexible sleeve to remake the interior of the pipes. This method is much less invasive and requires far less cleanup than excavation.

How do you fix a clogged storm drain?

A clogged storm drain can lead to water accumulating around your house, potentially causing thousands of dollars in damage. 

A group of storm drain pipes

3. Hydro jetting

An experienced, licensed plumber can use a process called hydro jetting to fix a clogged storm drain. Using special equipment and training, they will use a high-pressure water jet to break up any blockages, such as roots, debris, or other harmful buildups.

4. Cable rodding

Also called rootering, snaking, or augering, this method involves pushing a metal cable through the drain pipe in the hopes it will poke and break up any blockage, letting water pass freely. While an expert will likely need called in for a bad blockage, this method is an excellent first step for private property owners before calling a professional. Most hardware stores sell a pipe snake device, which will let you tackle the clog yourself. If the clog is especially stubborn, a professional may use a Picote milling machine, which uses a specialty head at the end of the cable to provide wall-to-wall pipe cleaning.

5. Blow bag

A blow bag or drain bladder is a method using a device like a deflated balloon. It is attached to a water source and the clogged storm drain. When the bag is full of water, a powerful rush of water is sent through the pipe in the hopes it will break up the blockage. Beware, as too much water pressure can damage pipes, particularly older ones with weak joints.

The cost of repairing a storm drain

 6. The costs and what they depend on

Depending on the severity of your storm drain break or clog, location, time of year, and method of repair, costs to repair your storm drain could range from hundreds for minor clogs to thousands for severe breaks. The cost to replace the broken elements could potentially be a lot higher. 

As one might expect, the more intensive the required repairs, the more expensive the project cost. Try to plan for potential repair or replacement costs in your maintenance schedule if you’ve been having drainage problems for a while. You might have something more serious than a simple repair wrong with your system. 

This storm drain needed clog prevention

Storm drain clog prevention

7. The problems you can avoid with prevention

By practicing storm drain clog prevention, you can avoid problems with your storm sewer system altogether. 

  • The best way to prevent a clog in your storm drain is to clear away debris around storm covers. Keeping the covers clear helps reduce the number of twigs, leaves, and trash that make it into the storm sewer and potentially cause clogs. 
  • Clear the path if you spot something along your street’s curb blocking the water flow to the storm drain. 
  • Plant trees and shrubs away from storm drains and pipes to prevent roots from clogging the system.
  • Keep leaves and other yard waste away from the storm drain. It will lead to clogs over time, costing you a lot of money to repair. 
  • Clean your home’s gutters mid-fall. Gutters direct rainwater away from your home and toward the sewer system. Clean gutters will ensure rainwater properly works its way to the sewer from your roof. 

Why you should trust a professional to repair your storm drain

8. Choose a professional

Professionals are experts, and they can get your repair completed to a standard the average homeowner cannot match. The health of your storm sewer system affects a wide area around you, and maintaining the system should be a priority. However, you may not have the skill or expertise to complete a complicated repair or may not be certified in the specialized materials necessary to fix the problem. Hiring a professional to complete your repairs allows you to utilize their skills, tools, and experience, ensuring your project is of the highest quality. With a skilled team of experts, your storm drain repair will remain in working order for many years to come. 

Professional teams should have insurance coverage in the unfortunate event of unforeseen circumstances or accidents leading to further damage. They are fully trained experts completing similar work regularly, giving them the experience to complete repairs quickly and accurately. 

Hiring an expert gives you access to the various storm drain repair methods you wouldn’t have otherwise, like hydro jetting or epoxy resin pipe relining. If you must excavate the damaged area, a professional is required to ensure no other utility lines are damaged and keeps service disruptions to a minimum. A professional will also ensure properly poured new pavement to cover the repair. 

Conclusion

Storm drain repair and maintenance are important aspects of property ownership. It is vital to know the various elements involved when your storm drain, catch basin, or storm sewer needs repaired, cleaned, or replaced. Securing the help of a professional ensures your repairs are made properly while providing insurance protection in the event of accidents.

How to clean pavers

If your pavers on your driveway or patio are starting to look old and worn, they might be due for a cleaning.

There are plenty of effective ways to clean pavers, which can save you hundreds if not thousands of dollars on potential replacement costs in the long run. They include pressure washing, dish soap and Simple Green.

Come dive in with us as we explore how you can clean and revitalize your pavers to get them looking brand new. 

Effective Ways To Clean Pavers

The first thing you need to do is determine how you want to clean your pavers. There are many effective methods you can use to bring your pavers back to life. Let’s go through a few.

Pressure Washing

One of the most popular ways people approach cleaning their pavers is with pressure washing. You can use a pressure washer to break down any buildup or get rid of tough stains. All kinds of things can leave stains on your pavers over time, including dirt, debris, grass, and leaves. 

How to clean pavers: start with pressure washing

Dish Soap

One gentle way to approach cleaning your pavers is with dish soap. One reason you might choose to use dish soap is if you don’t want to remove decorative texture or sand. We recommend using gentle dish soap or degreaser, such as those made by Dawn. 

Start by mixing your dish soap with water in a small container and use a rag to lightly scrub away any dirty stains on your pavers. If a rag isn’t doing the job, you can also use the coarse end of a sponge or a bristled brush. 

White Vinegar and Water

One natural method for touching up paver stones or concrete pavers is using a mixture of white vinegar and water. When you spray your white vinegar and water mixture on your pavers, you’ll want to let it sit there for an hour or so. After an hour, you can use mild dish soap and water to scrub it clean. 

Simple Green

One of the great things about Simple Green is that it does not use any harsh chemicals. This near-natural solution can get rid of stains and dirt without ruining or discoloring your stones.

Sweep

Though you only have to power wash your pavers once every year, we highly recommend sweeping them as often as you can. This is one of the best ways to regularly remove dirt from your pavers and keep them from staining. 

Don't forget to sweep frequently your pavers

How To Clean Different Types of Pavers

Concrete

When it comes to concrete pavers, one of the most popular cleaners is hydrochloric acid. This heavy-duty cleaning solution is incredibly effective at removing concrete stains, especially in thick concrete driveways. This solution gets into the binder in concrete pavers and dissolves the acid on contact. While it does a fantastic job at making concrete look super clean, it can also ruin your pavers.

If you don’t need a very aggressive clean, we recommend using detergents or less-aggressive cleaning solutions.

Brick Pavers

Brick is probably the one exception when it comes to most patio pavers, as it needs to be cleaned more than once per year. It is very porous in nature, meaning it takes on stains much more easily. You may need to spend more time cleaning your brick if you want it to retain a clear and clean color. 

You can use any of the solutions listed above, though try and clean every few months if possible.

How to clean brick pavers

Natural Stone

When cleaning natural stone pavers, it’s important to avoid using harsh chemicals at all costs. There’s no faster way to damage natural stone pavers than by using chemicals that are very acidic or abrasive. If you need to treat stubborn stains on your natural stone, we highly recommend going with a vinegar and water solution or a light detergent. 

Further ReadingWhat Driveway Materials Should I Consider For My Next Project?

Things To Avoid When Cleaning Pavers

When cleaning pavers, there are certain things we often see people do that end up doing more harm than good. If you want to keep your patio or driveway pavers clean year-round, here are a few things to avoid when you want clean pavers.

Using Abrasive Cleaning Solutions

The last thing you want to do when trying to keep your pavers clean is using an abrasive cleaning solution, such as bleach. There are many kinds of pavers, such as concrete pavers, that don’t take too well to acidic cleaners. If you’re using concrete pavers, marble pavers, limestone pavers, or other pavers with large doses of calcium, avoid using highly acidic cleaners at all costs.

Using Steel Brushes or Wire

There are certain materials that don’t take too well to wire or steel brushes. When it comes to cleaning natural stone, we recommend avoiding these kinds of tools if you can. For example, if you try and treat sandstone or limestone with a steel brush or wire, you can end up damaging the top layer.

Not Paying Attention To Decorations

If you have plants, pots, water fountains, or other kinds of decor on your pavers that can leave mold or mildew residue, it’s important that you’re consistently cleaning around them to avoid getting stains on your pavers. Make sure to regularly lift up your decorations and clean underneath them.

As a side note, if you ever notice water pooling on your pavers, make sure to clean it up immediately. Pooling water can leave dark stains that can be very difficult to treat down the line.

This paver is finally clean!

Final Thoughts

If you want to make your pavers look brand new again, we recommend cleaning them at least once per year, following our recommendations above. To get rid of pesky stains and mold or mildew growth, one of our favorite natural solutions is mixing white vinegar and water. Not only will it leave your pavers looking fresh and new, but it’s also good for the environment.

We hope that this article was helpful! Make sure to head on over to Paving Finder blog for more expert advice!

Rainbow Sandstone

People often wonder if rainbow sandstone is as magical as it sounds.

Rainbow sandstone has a smooth finish and unique rainbow pattern. This popular characteristic makes it the perfect choice for those who want to add a semblance of luxury to their interior and exterior spaces.

Of course, having a decent understanding of a type of stone before making a purchase for your paving project is crucial

Come dive in as we explore everything there is to know about rainbow sandstone.

What Is Rainbow Sandstone?

Rainbow sandstone is a popular type of sandstone that is found in quarries in Rajasthan’s Nagaur District. Some people also refer to it as Khatu Rainbow Sandstone or Indian Sandstone. One of the unique characteristics that set Rainbow Sandstone apart from other types of sandstone is the thin lines or stripes of color that run across its surface. This includes shades of red, violet, and brown. 

With these veins running in parallel with each other, the stone ends up having a rainbow look. 

Beyond its rainbow-like aesthetic, it also has a smooth finish, making it wonderful for both interior and exterior projects, especially for those who want an added luxurious feel.

When adding premium-grade sandstone to your home, you can bring a warm and charming natural quality that catches the eye. Every stone offers a unique pattern with varying swirls of color. On the surface, it’s pretty easy to see why this has become such a popular stone. 

Characteristics of Rainbow Sandstone

  • Made In – Slabs, Tiles, and Countertops.
  • Uses – Flooring, Wall Tiles, and Countertops.
  • Finishing – Flamed, Gangsaw, and Polish.
  • Primary Colors – Brown.
  • Country – India.
Rainbow sandstone quarry

How Do You Lay Rainbow Sandstone?

While every paving project is different, there are some basic rules to follow when laying Rainbow Sandstone (or any type of sandstone, for that matter). 

Let’s go over the basics in step-by-step order:

1.Find The Area

First, you’ll want to determine where you’re going to lay your sandstone. You’ll want to make sure the area is level, firm, and well-drained. If you can, mark the area out with spray paint so you can get a visual of exactly where you’ll lay your stone. 

2. Start Digging

You’ll then want to dig the spray-painted area at least 125mm deep + the depth of your paving materials. Remove all of the topsoil and vegetation from the area as well. When finished digging, you should have a minimum of 150mm.

3. Ensure The Area Is Level

Using measure falls and string lines, you’ll need to ensure that the area you are laying your stones is level. Once these tools are in place, compact the area using a tamper or garden roller. 

4. Leave Space For Your Base

Using any sub-base material from dust to crushed stone, you’ll want to fill in a 50mm layer and compact it to lay your stone on top. Once filled and compacted, repeat the process one more time until you have 100mm of overall sub-base. 

PRO TIP – Make sure that your area has a place for water to run off, so it does not pool.

5. Wash Your Stone

Remove any dirt or dust from your stones by giving them a good wash. You can use a sponge to wipe your stones down before putting them into place. 

6. Prime Your Stone

Using fine mortar slurry or a proprietary priming product, prime the back of your stones.

7. Mix Up Your Mortar

Using four parts sand to one part water, create your mortar mix. You’ll want to make sure that the consistency of the mortar mix is “wet” so that it is easy to work with.

8. Spread Your Mortar Mix

Start with a small area of your layout and spread your mortar mix so that it is level. You’ll want it to be somewhere around 30mm in thickness.

How to lay your rainbow sandstone paving

9. Lay Your Stone

Start laying your sandstone units in your bed of mortar one stone at a time. Each stone should be anywhere from 8 to 10mm apart. To ensure your stones fit firmly into place, you can tap down on them with a rubber mallet. 

10. Case the Joints

Create more mortar mix using four parts sand to one part water. Make sure that the consistency of this mortar mix is “wet” like before. Take this mortar mix and fill your joints using a trowel. To compress the mortar mix into the joints between your stones, you can use a pointing tool.

11. Let It Settle

Allow your Rainbow Sandstone paving to dry before you walk on it. We recommend waiting at least 24 hours. However, if you live in a wet or humid environment, we recommend waiting longer. 

What Is The Best Sandstone?

There is no single type of sandstone that is better than another. However, there are certainly different grades or tiers of sandstone that you can purchase. For example, if you want to purchase Indian Sandstone for your garden paving project, you’ll want to make sure that the sandstone has a uniform texture and a fine grain. 

You’ll also want to make sure that you’re buying from a reputable dealer, as they’ll be able to provide you with details about the exact type of sandstone you’re purchasing and how to take care of it. 

How Long Does Rainbow Sandstone Last?

If installed and maintained with proper care, Rainbow Sandstone can last for a very long time. On the other hand, if you install it on the cheap, don’t provide it with care, or use low-quality materials, you might only be able to expect anywhere from 2-10 years out of it. 

With the right materials, a solid base, and proper care (ex. Repointing every couple of years), you can get anywhere from 30 to 50 years out of your sandstone.

There are many Rainbow Sandstone paths that have been down for more than 100 years without moving very much.

Does Indian Sandstone Keep Its Color?

Some people note that they have issues with their Indian Sandstone changing colors after a certain period. Depending on the type of sandstone you have and the conditions it is in, it can often turn yellow over time.

One of the best ways to get sandstone to return to its original color is by treating it with an acidic solution. Some people will even go as far as staining their sandstone if it is not sealed, which can give it an entirely different color altogether. However, the susceptibility of sandstone staining depends a lot on the density of the stone in question.

Some sandstone is much more porous than other types.

What Is The Best Indian Sandstone Color?

While there are many different colors of Indian Sandstone to choose from, one of the most popular on the current market (and for a good reason) is Raj Green. This color of Indian Sandstone offers a unique mix of earthy browns and greens that are very complementary when put alongside natural landscapes with grass and foliage. 

Beyond that, Raj Green is one of the most versatile types of Indian Sandstone around, allowing you to use it for a number of unique projects. 

Of course, there are many other colors to choose from as well, including grey, light grey, mint, and brown. Modac is a very popular color due to the fact that it changes color when wet. When dry, it looks like a blend of orange, plum, and pink. However, when wet, it looks more earthy.

Indian sandstone colors

Rainbow Sandstone Paving Ideas

Outdoor Patio

Rainbow Sandstone has an earthy look that works well with outdoor spaces. Thanks to the shades of green in many types of sandstone, it works naturally when set in next to grassy areas or gardens with plenty of foliage. 

Take a look at this simple Rainbow Sandstone patio with a brick outline sitting next to a large grassy lawn. 

Pool Area

Rainbow Sandstone works great next to pools for several reasons. 

For starters, it has a slight texture on the surface that keeps it from getting too slick when wet, which can keep those hanging out around the pool safe at all times. 

Secondly, many types of Rainbow Sandstone will have a slight change in color when wet, which results in a unique multicolor aesthetic that you can’t get from many other types of stones. 

Check out some of the ways people have incorporated Rainbow Sandstone into their pool areas.

Pros of Rainbow Sandstone Paving

Durability

While Rainbow Sandstone isn’t as durable as slate or granite, it is more than durable enough to last for many years if properly taken care of. Once installed, Rainbow Sandstone can last for many decades, even in environments that receive inclement weather often.

Beauty

There is an undeniable and ineffable quality that you get with Rainbow Sandstone that is difficult to find elsewhere. You get a natural beauty from Rainbow Sandstone that complements many spaces and designs. 

One of the great things about Rainbow Sandstone is that you can choose from a wide variety of colors, from green to white to brown and beyond. The stretch of hues is so versatile, making Rainbow Sandstone great for several projects.

Beyond that, you get an earthy texture that you won’t find in any imitations.

Easy To Replace

Because you install sandstone flooring using individual pieces and tiles, you can easily remove and replace tiles if they crack or break. We always recommend saving some tiles from your initial installation in case anything happens. It can be difficult to source the exact color of Rainbow Sandstone tile years down the line, if not impossible. This is why many quarries will stop producing certain varieties for a number of reasons.

Replacement of paving

Uniqueness

Sandstone pavers are all-natural. This means that every color, pattern, or hue found in these pavers is totally unique. When these massive slabs of stone are mined from the Earthy, they are cut into smaller pieces. 

A builder can then rearrange these pieces at random to turn them into a masterful piece of architecture.

Cons of Rainbow Sandstone Paving

Of course, there are also many drawbacks to using Rainbow Sandstone as well, which are worth noting if you’re planning on making a big investment for a paving project.

Can Scratch

Rainbow Sandstone is a natural rock. Compared to many types of natural stone, however, it is very soft. This means that it is susceptible to dents and scratches over time. Dropping some heavy can easily crack a tile, or stepping the wrong way in a high heel can leave nasty scratches.

High Water Absorption

Most Rainbow Sandstone is very porous. In fact, the absorption rate of most types of sandstone is 6%, meaning it is more vulnerable to damage than other types of stone. If you live in extreme conditions, your Rainbow Sandstone could suffer from warping, liquid stains, molds, and micro-bacteria if not properly sealed and cared for. 

If you are planning to install Rainbow Sandstone in a kitchen, bathroom, or pool area, spending time sealing it is extremely important. 

Cost

Rainbow Sandstone can get very expensive very fast. People often ask us how much it costs for certain projects, such as paving a driveway. While Rainbow Sandstone can certainly look a lot nicer than concrete, it will also cost a lot more. 

Rainbow (and/or Indian) Sandstone Paving Problems

Two of the biggest problems with Indian Sandstone is that it can become soft and brittle over time and can become less vibrant under certain conditions. 

For these reasons, it is important to source high-quality sandstone and seal it so that you can protect your paved area from deteriorating over the years.

Paving problems with natural rocks

Final Thoughts 

Whether you’re paving a driveway, creating a garden patio, or putting in some new steps next to the pool, Rainbow Sandstone is a great paving choice. It is certainly a higher-priced paving slab compared to many others, though it can provide a blend of earthiness and luxury that you won’t find in many other types of stone. 

We highly recommend it for any kind of outdoor project! 
For more information on paving projects, head over to our blog, where we share our expert advice on paving with all types of materials!

Sandstone vs Limestone

As two of the most popular stones in the world for paving, people often wonder whether they should use sandstone or limestone when paving their driveways, patios, or gardens. 

While you can use both Sandstone vs Limestone to achieve similarly fantastic looks, there are many differences to consider in terms of cost, durability, and overall aesthetic.

Come dive in with us as we explore the major differences between sandstone and limestone that you should note when making your decision. 

What Is Limestone?

Limestone is what we refer to as a sedimentary rock. It’s formed out of several organic debris, including algae, coral, and shells. However, it can also be formed with chemical processes, such as calcium carbonate precipitation from ocean water or lakes. Scientists develop much of the Earth’s chronology thanks to studying fossils that are deeply embedded in limestone.

A view of a limestone quarry

You can find most limestone in very shallow oceanic regions, such as continental platforms and shelves. While most limestone is gray, it can come in different colors depending on its natural composition, including brown, yellow, or white. 

What Is Sandstone?

Sandstone is another type of sedimentary rock; its composition includes rock, minerals, and other organic materials. You can find sandstone all over the world, though there are large deposits in places like Germany, South Africa, and the United States.

A view of a sandstone formation

Sandstone typically forms in the offshore regions of river deltas, where sand is deposited and buried. Over time, beaches and desert dunes can also leave large sandstone beds. While it is less widespread, scientists also often find fossils in sandstone.

In terms of color, you can find pretty wide-ranging fluctuations, moving from brown to yellow to red to orange.

Sandstone – How It Looks

Sandstone is fairly variable when it comes to textures and colors; it is a great option for those who want to go beyond uniformity. Many people feel that the color-grading found in sandstone is superior to that of limestone. No two pieces of sandstone will look the same. 

Going for a golden sandstone is excellent for both indoor and outdoor projects.

Sandstone: how it looks

In terms of texture, sandstone is more uneven than limestone, giving you a rippled look. We love sandstone with a sawn finish, as it provides a very contemporary look, even more than limestone in many ways. On the other hand, you can get a grittier texture with a bit more slip resistance by sand-blasting your sandstone. You’ll often find this texture along poolsides. 

Limestone – How It Looks

Compared to sandstone, limestone has a texture that once could describe as flat or consistent. For this reason, limestone has become one of the most popular choices for covered courtyards and driveways. With such an even finish, many people opt to use limestone for indoor applications too.

White limestone is one of the best choices if you’re going for a cleaner, more uniform look. However, while limestone offers a smooth, uniform look for the most part, you can potentially expect a slight color variation from piece to piece.

Limestone: how it looks

Compared to sandstone, you can expect fewer ridges with limestone. With its unique and natural characteristics, you almost get an orange peel-like texture from it, as well as a natural split surface look. 

Cost Of Sandstone Vs Limestone

When it comes to the cost of paving something like a driveway, sandstone is your best bet. 

If you can get locally-sourced limestone rocks, you won’t end up paying very much. However, the minute you begin paying for quarried travertine and marbles, it can become extremely costly. 

This is one of the major reasons that homeowners often opt for sandstone, as the cost isn’t nearly as high. Sandstone is also cheaper than concrete and cement in most cases, especially when locally available.

Beyond that, sandstone is much easier to work with than limestone, concrete, or cement; it means you also pay less for labor costs. Overall, when it comes to the affordability of sandstone vs limestone, sandstone is a pretty clear winner. 

Composition of Limestone and Sandstone

Limestone has a very chalky texture thanks to its calcite composition. Overall, the composition of limestone is pretty consistent and plain. 

On the other hand, the composition of sandstone includes various rocks and minerals, such as quartz and feldspar. This sedimentary rock can vary from piece to piece, giving it a unique composition compared to limestone.

Compared to limestone, there is more variability in the composition of sandstone

Sandstone Vs Limestone Durability

When it comes to the durability of sandstone vs limestone, both of these rocks are very sturdy and can last a long time under the right conditions. Both of these stones are able to endure tough weather, which is why they have become such popular choices for outdoor paving. 

For generations, people used both of these stones to build large structures that still stand strong to this day. Beyond the similarities in terms of durability, sandstone is much easier to work with than limestone, as it is much softer. However, this also makes sandstone more susceptible to being scratched or dented, especially when using it for indoor projects. 

On the other hand, sandstone is also denser than limestone, which is why you’ll see it in many construction projects. 

It’s worth noting that because limestone is a calcite rock, it doesn’t mix well with strong acids. If you use strong acid washes on limestone, you can stain and ruin your limestone. With sandstone, you can clean and wash it with milder acids without much worry, though like Limestone, it doesn’t react well to very strong acids. 

Another thing you might want to consider with durability is water absorption. Both of these rocks are fairly water-resistant, although sandstone is a bit more porous compared to limestone. When installing these rocks, especially in indoor applications, it’s important to apply some sort of sealant to the surface so that they aren’t as impacted by water.

PRO TIP

You might consider looking at the stones when they’re wet during your purchase. Doing so will give you a better idea as to which one best fit your requirements.

When all is said and done, we’d have to give the medal to limestone on this one. When you’re working with lightly-colored sandstone, it’s not surprising to see subtle differences when it absorbs water. While it won’t likely impact your stone that much, even the potential of a slight impact puts it just behind limestone. 

Sandstone Vs Limestone Slip Resistance

Because sandstone has a naturally grainy and sandy texture, it is much more slip-resistant than limestone. We recommend using sandstone in areas that receive a lot of rainfall or areas that are consistently wet, such as around swimming pools. 

That’s not to say that limestone is slippery, though polished limestone in indoor spaces should be avoided when it is wet, as it can be slippery to walk across. 

Sandstone Vs Limestone Versatility

Both limestone and sandstone are ultra-versatile stones, which you can cut into various shapes and sizes for your need. No matter what kind of project you have, you can get these stones to fit within the bounds, which makes it quite difficult to find a “winner” in terms of versatility. 

With such a wide range of colors and finishes, you can adapt these stones to just about any project.

Sandstone vs Limestone : which one sgould I choose?

Which One Should I Choose? 

With all of the information above, you should be able to determine which of these rocks better suits your project. 

If you’re working on landscaping, steps, pathways, decks, patios, or other outdoor projects, locally available limestone rocks can be a great choice. If you want to add a touch of luxury to your indoor decorations, such as countertops, cladding, flooring, sculptures, or fountains, exotic limestone, travertine, and marble are excellent choices. 

Just note that these will cost you a bit more than sandstone. 

On the other hand, sandstone is a tried and true material that humans use since ancient times to build entire buildings. However, today, you mostly find sandstone on driveways, around swimming pools, on patios, or throughout pathways. 

Conclusion

Limestone and sandstone have very similar properties. But there are clearly a few differences that can help guide your decision. 

While both of these stones are very effective and eco-friendly choices, we highly recommend going with limestone for indoor projects if you have the additional money to spend, though if you’re looking for the best stone for an outdoor project that’ll give you color and variation, sandstone is an excellent choice. 

Make sure to get in touch with us at Paving Finder if you need any further help in making the best decision for your residential or commercial project. We help homeowners and project managers make the best choices for their paving needs based on their budgets and requirements. 

The paving season does not end when the air turns cold but rather when the ground freezes and paving installation becomes impossible.

Appropriate timing, weather, and temperature conditions play a huge role in paving installation. You need to ensure you have optimal conditions when laying down your pavement if you wish for reliable and successful results.

On that note, let’s discuss all the relevant details below.

When Does the Paving Season End?

The season ends when the ground freezes for all paving companies, and they can no longer work on it. This is especially true in the case of asphalt, the most popular paving material. It paves best in summer or warm weather.

During the winter season, the ground stiffens up so much that the labor cannot work with the asphalt anymore, let alone get it right. If you attempt to lay asphalt in the winter season, it will set in long before you have had time to smooth it. Hence, the result will not be high-quality and neat.

Incorrect paving means your pavement will soon suffer more wear and tear, especially in uneven areas where there is more concentration. The bad weather will even render the seal coating finish incapable of doing its job. Do you know why? Because seal coating is a water-based sealer and it does not set incorrectly when the weather is inappropriate.

If you’re paving asphalt on your driveway and don’t want it to crack or spoil, then a temperature above 45 degrees F is ideal.

digital marketing paving

The Best Time of the Year to Pave Your Driveway or Lot

Paving a driveway or lot is a hefty investment, and surely, you want to do your best. Hence, if you ask, we’d suggest late spring till early fall as the ideal time of the year for paving your lot.

Ideal Conditions for Asphalt Installation

When does the paving season end? The ideal temperature conditions for paving asphalt lots or driveways must be 45 or 50 degrees F and above. Moreover, ensure that the ground is firm enough to lay down your asphalt pavement but not frozen like that in extreme winters.

We do not even recommend early spring as an ideal paving time because of the precipitation and melting snow/ice. Hence, your asphalt paving projects should best bring from late spring onwards.

Ideal Conditions for Concrete Installation

When does the paving season end? According to experts, the ideal conditions for installing concrete on your driveway or lot are between 40 degrees F to 60 degrees F. What happens if you try installing concrete below this temperature range? Supposing you install concrete at 40 degrees F temperature: the chemical reactions that make your concrete stronger will slow down and weaken your paving material.

Furthermore, if the temperature reaches below freezing point when your concrete is curing, the water inside will freeze, your concrete will expand and ultimately suffer cracks. Similarly, temperatures above 77 degrees F will evaporate the water to hydrate and cure your concrete.

As a result, the concrete’s temperature will increase, weaken, shrink and crack your structure prematurely.

concrete installation conditions

Why the Right Weather is so essential for a Successful Paving Project

You may have heard experts stressing the importance of optimal weather conditions for your paving project to be successful. But have you ever wondered what ‘optimal weather’ truly means? When does the paving season end?

In simple words, we’d say that optimal weather is where the base and air temperatures meet the specified requirements. If the two temperatures are colder, your pavement will cool too fast and set in too soon. As a result, you will not get the desired compacted density in your structure.

The thicker layers of your pavement will not cool as fast as the thin ones, though. Additionally, if the ambient or base temperature is low, the pavement material will cool quicker, its density will fall short, and the patch will come undone and fall apart sooner.

Overlay and paving projects don’t last too well if your material mix cools too fast. You will end up with a rocky, rough, and unraveled surface way sooner than you expected. The life of your pavement will reduce as it begins retaining more water and speeding up the unraveling process.

In short, it is crucial to monitor the following during your paving process:

  • Wind velocity
  • Base temperature
  • Ambient temperature
  • Hot mix asphalt temperature (for asphalt installation)

How to Prepare Your Property for Paving

You cannot begin laying the asphalt/concrete mix as soon as you decide to pave your property. You need to undergo extensive preparations to ready the site paving. For preparing the area, here is what you need to do:

  • Area excavation- you first have to excavate the area where the pavement material will go. Mark out the site and dig down to the depth you require for the base layers. Along with flattening the foundation’s bottom thoroughly, you must also clear all large rubble from underneath.
  • Flattening- using a plate compactor, the next step is compacting and flattening the earth. The compactor helps with flattening and leveling the earth for a firm base. You will have to repeat this step after each base layer for perfect leveling.
  • Access road- the workers need an access route for transporting equipment and material to and fro from your property. Hence, you may have to build a temporary access road with their help.
  • Demolition and clearing- the project site needs to be clear of vegetation, debris, trees, and rocks. Demolition of the obstacles and clearing them off is essential.
new driveway planning

What to Plan for when paving a New Driveway/Lot

A new driveway demands attention to detail and careful planning. Remember, it is a structure that has to last you for years and return your value for money; hence it is only right to give it your best shot.

But what defines the success of a driveway or lot? The answer is thickness of the asphalt and a proper drainage system. Let’s discuss these factors in details below:

A.    Proper Thickness of Asphalt

Residential driveways do not need to bear heavy traffic loads: they cater to a small number of vehicles at the most. That too, at slow speeds. Hence, the proper thickness would be 3″ for this use. This thickness further compacts to 2 ½ “.

By combining your carefully compacted sub-base with this thickness, you get the optimal measurement for a reliable and long-lasting residential driveway.

The problem with applying a thick asphalt layer in residential driveways is that it does not compact well and, with time, causes depressions on your surface.

B.    Proper Drainage

One of the greatest enemies of a driveway is the freeze/thaw cycle. It damages the structure and deforms asphalt faster than it should. You can prevent the devastation of water infiltration by installing a proper draining system for your new driveway.

A proper drainage system will also minimize the damage from flooding on your new driveway. You may also consider installing a linear drainage system for your residential lot. It will help drain the water along the entire length of the pavement.

hand paving

Final Thoughts

The ideal season for paving projects begins from late spring to early fall because it does not freeze to an unfavorable extent. Furthermore, the temperature conditions and wind velocity also remain feasible for paving projects.

The success and maximum life of a pavement depend on how well you built it and how well you selected the season, temperature, and time of the year. All of these factors play a significant role in extending the best performance of your paving materials and structure.

When a homeowner or property owner is considering installing new asphalt pavement, properly taking care of the surface is one of the most vital topics he or she would like to know. The correct time to wait before using the pavement to avoid any possible early damage is another important thing to keep in mind.

If you are planning to invest in asphalt pavement, you may need to weigh the implications of how to take good care of it to ensure that you get the most out of yout investment.

But when is the right time to take care of your freshly laid pavement?

The day you install your asphalt pavement is the right time to start caring for it. Although some individuals inherit their asphalt pavement from former homeowners, so this is not always a possibility. However, if you are thinking of laying new pavement or resurfacing an existing one, now is the time to think about how you can maintain it, ensuring it keeps looking like new.

How long should you wait before you can walk and drive on your freshly laid asphalt?

Once your new asphalt driveway or parking lot has been compacted, it is safe to walk on the surface after 24 hours. However, it is best to wait for a minimum of 72 hours before driving on it and 14 days before you park on the surface.

So, what will happen if you don’t take care of your newly installed asphalt pavement?

Without routine maintenance, even the best-laid parking lots or driveways will begin to form cracks, potholes and deteriorate sooner than anticipated, contributing to the need for costly repairs. It is important to properly maintain freshly laid asphalt pavement to uphold its longevity as gas, water percolation, oil, and other environmental elements can cause it to start eroding.

Proper care for new asphalt instructions

Once you install your new asphalt pavement, it will need care and maintenance, both when it’s new and throughout its lifetime. The better care you offer your freshly laid pavement, the longer it will last, like the rest of the upgrades on your property. 

The actual cost of a pavement installation is estimated over its entire lifespan, so adequate care and maintenance are vital to maintaining the cost as low as possible every year. 

By complying with the care and maintenance instructions below, you can help assure yourself of long-lasting service life for your new asphalt pavement.

How long to wait before driving on a new surface

It takes new asphalt pavement at least 72 hours to dry enough for vehicle traffic. So, ensure no vehicle uses the new surface until after 72 hours of the installation. However, it is highly recommended that heavy vehicles should be kept out of the new surface even after 72 hours as they can still trigger damage due to their weight. 

You should wait for about 14 days before allowing heavy vehicles to use the new asphalt surface.

Assist the asphalt curing process – how long does asphalt take to cure fully?

It takes asphalt six to twelve months to completely cure, and for that period, it remains somewhat more vulnerable to damage. 

The curing time of asphalt is partly weather-dependent and varies depending on the thickness and mix type. Also, extreme temperatures can slow the drying process of your freshly laid pavement and also trigger the asphalt to weaken again before it can cure completely. 

At that point, sprinkling your parking lot or driveway during hot days to cool the asphalt and harden it temporarily can often help. The rise and fall in temperature cause asphalt to soften and harden. Watering it is advantageous but not obligatory. 

As a result, it is much best not to plan asphalt installation or repairs at temperatures above 100°F. Also, do not be worried if soapsuds should show up. The ultimate goal of this detailed procedure is to have a beautiful pavement that will last and look amazing for years to come.

Drive slowly

The slower you drive on new asphalt, the less room it has for scarring or scuff marks. Therefore, urge drivers to slow down and drive with care, as speed can destroy asphalt, particularly freshly laid ones.

To prevent your asphalt from scuffing or scarring, always keep your cool while entering your freshly paved area to avoid any unnecessary harm to your asphalt.

Furthermore, if you have asphalt installed for public usage, it is best to enforce speed reduction mechanisms in the area to prevent unnecessary harm.

Mistakes to avoid making with new asphalt

Asphalt is among the most valuable and durable paving products on the market. Still, you have to protect it from misuse and conduct frequent maintenance, ensuring that it stays attractive and usable for the longest possible time. 

The wonderful sight of a freshly paved asphalt driveway or parking lot is second to none. The freshly-laid asphalt looks beautiful and gives a new, sleek and upscale look to any driveway or parking lot. 

If you take good care of your freshly laid pavement, you will ensure that the beautiful appearance and efficiency are maintained for 15 to 30 years. Neglect it, and it may serve you somewhat 5 to 7 years. Below are the mistakes to avoid making with your new paved asphalt.

Avoid parking in the same spot every day.

It can take your newly installed asphalt pavement up to a year to fully cure, so don’t park every time in the very same spot, or you may generate low spots or create marks in the asphalt. 

Allowing things like motorcycles, barbecues, lawn chairs, etc., to stay in the same place for extended periods may trigger asphalt depression. Parking on uncured asphalt frequently in the same place will trigger dents where the wheels rest. 

This is more of an issue with driveways, but if your lot has reserved parking spaces, it can also be a concern. To help stop this, ensure everyone understands that they should try not to park precisely the same position every day.

Avoid driving on the edges.

The weakest portion of asphalt pavement is the edge. When too much weight is put on the edges too frequently, it can easily crack or split. 

The edges of your new driveway might be a little thinner and more prone to cracking and collapsing, so avoid driving on those edges to help prevent this. 

Also, try not to make your vehicle go over the side of your driveway. Your car’s weight will cause the edge to flatten and begin to crumble the freshly laid pavement. 

Furthermore, you can also try to extend the compressed crushed stone layer that lies underneath the asphalt top layer to provide additional support; around 6 inches of crushed stone on either section of your driveway ought to do the magic.

Avoid excessive weight on the surface.

Your new asphalt can be degraded by excessive weight from big heavy vehicles. So, always keep concrete trucks, oil trucks, etc., off your new driveway or parking lot. 

If you want to store campers for extended periods, put a piece of plywood underneath the tongue jack as well as under the tires to help distribute the weight. 

The same applies to any trailers or vehicles you parked and seldom used. Try to keep them out of the driveway if possible and, if not, do well to transfer them from place to place. This will help ensure that the weight is distributed evenly, preventing portions of your driveway from sagging.

driveway seal

Long term asphalt maintenance tips

Below are some long term asphalt maintenance tips to help prolong its service life:

  • Ensure proper drainage of water
  • Apply Sealcoating regularly
  • Care for oil spills
  • Remove snow and ice
  • Remove weeds and plants

So you have successfully installed a new asphalt driveway or parking lot and beginning to wonder the next things to do to help maintain the surface. General maintenance practices need to be adhered to keep your new pavement always looking like new. 

If you take proper measures, your pavement will last for an unbelievably extended time. 

Ensure proper drainage of water

Water is undoubtedly the core enemy of asphalt pavement. Hence, adequate drainage installation at the time of constructing your freshly laid pavement is vital. It is also worth knowing that ensuring that the drainage remains functioning throughout the asphalt lifespan is equally important. 

It’s incredibly necessary to ensure you have a reliable asphalt pavement drainage framework in place so it can drain perfectly. 

A drainage system is probably the most significant part of a pavement installation process. In fact, if it’s not performed the first time correctly, parts of the driveway may need to be totally demolished, re-graded, and replaced so as to have it fixed.

Apply Sealcoating regularly

Using a top-quality sealing product to seal coat your pavement helps slow down the pavement’s degradation, keep it in perfect condition, and improve its life and appearance; asphalt should be sealed each 24 to 36 months for optimum benefit

The existing oil on your pavement will be locked up by seal coating it, keeping the asphalt flexible, and reducing cracking. 

It is recommended that you seal your asphalt pavement one year after installation and every 1/12 to 2 years after that. 

Furthermore, it would be best if your pavement is seal coated under appropriate weather conditions-say 50 °F.

Care for oil spills

The other top tip is to prevent corrosive products like antifreeze, gasoline, transmission fluid, oil, etc., from spilling or leaking on your new pavement. Asphalt is an oil-based product; hence, oil and gasoline spills can make the surface dissolved, causing degradation. 

To mitigate damage, avoid dropping or leaking these materials on asphalt, and use absorbent materials to clean up any spills. Because these fluids can create holes in a freshly laid pavement that may require immediate repair if they do happen.

Remove snow and ice

If water reaches the pores in your asphalt pavement and freezes, it can lead to a serious problem for you. The freezing of water causes the water to expand, implying that pressure can accumulate below your pavement surface. As time goes on, this can trigger the formation of big cracks and potholes. 

If you fail to remove snow from your asphalt pavement properly, it can put your pavement in dangerous conditions and result in hideous issues that can cause serious damage. So, it’s vital that you keep water from freezing in your asphalt pavement using some ice melting material on your paving.

Remove weeds and plants

Planting grass along your asphalt pavement’s edges is okay, but planting big shrubs or trees that are supposed to grow large should be avoided. 

Although grass can help keep your pavement from soil erosion and add some sort of support to the newly laid pavement, plants with intrusive root systems will do just the opposite.

Big roots can trigger cracking and unevenness in your driveway or parking lot, so watch for plants that may present such a threat. The safest way is to spray any weeds near the asphalt with weed killer before they get out of control.

The life expectancy of asphalt – with and without proper maintenance

Several variables determine asphalt paving’s lifetime, including whether it is freshly constructed or an overlay, the number of vehicles the pavement handle per day, and the vehicles’ weight entering the pavement. Suppose the freshly laid pavement is built correctly, gets prompt repairs, and is properly maintained regularly. In that case, the following estimates should provide you a clue on how long your asphalt pavement should last:

  • A residential driveway can last up to 25 years since the driveway does not experience too much traffic.
  • Parking lots can last between 15-25 years, depending on the type of vehicle that uses it.
  • Residential streets can last about 20 years before considering resurfacing it.
  • Highways can last 10-15 years since these roads regularly experienced heavy beating.

Generally, asphalt pavements, if maintained properly, have an expected lifespan of roughly 25 years. Notwithstanding, most asphalt pavements sacrifice 10 % of their structural strength within ten years, and the pavement would have lost 45 % of its integrity and original longevity after 20 years if not adequately maintained.

Should I seal coat my freshly installed asphalt pavement?

No!-No! In reality, it is not ideal for sealing a new asphalt pavement immediately as it will prolong the curing process; it will retain the oils in the asphalt needed to be evaporated to cure. 

Some professionals recommend sealing asphalt pavements about 30 days after installing it, then every one or two years after that. This could be an expensive maintenance expenditure and is not normally compulsory(but important) in reality. 

The key thing is to ensure you seal your asphalt pavement at the time you start seeing the aggregates in the top layer of asphalt revealing through, or when its first deep black color begins to look quite gray and fading. In a nutshell, do not seal your freshly laid pavement immediately.

Conclusion

After investing in your pavement installation, you would want it to serve you for an extended period, getting the best value for your money. Asphalt is meant to last for decades (approximately 25 years); however, properly caring for it plays a key role in how long it would serve you.

By complying with all the highlighted care and maintenance tricks and tips, you are sure to get the best out of your investment. Although the process may be much of a hassle, it worth all the inconveniences, as it offers your newly installed pavement a long-lasting lifespan.

In this article, we are going to discuss all the details of plowing on new asphalt. Minor damages can occur from snow plowing on your asphalt driveway, but there are ways to overcome that. You must try using a lightweight plastic shovel only every time you attempt plowing in your driveway.

It is also a great practice to start shoveling early and more frequently so that you can prevent ice or snow from building up on your asphalt. An excellent precaution to protect your driveway from damage is to hold your shovel at a steep angle and only use an ice pick for digging into it. 

With that being said, let’s look at the main factors involved in plowing a new asphalt, and you can protect the surface during winters. 

Risks of Having Driveway Plowed

Winters are the toughest times of the year, perhaps, in terms of property and residence maintenance. Homeowners are constantly hard-pressed to prevent all kinds of damage to their properties, including protecting their asphalt driveways from plowing damages. 

If you observe how snow plowing operates, you’d note the nigh risks of damage as the heavy metal blade drags across it repeatedly. It is even trickier if you have an uneven surface below or if the level is unclear to you.

 Once the snow melts and spring approaches, you start discovering visible splits and gashes in the driveway. These are never a welcome sight. Let’s take a closer look at all the risks involved:

  • Hardscaping- if you have certain hardscaping elements, including pavers and bricks that are detaching or protruding, you have trouble on your hands. These are even more vulnerable to damage from shovels, and the heavy-duty equipment one has to employ to shovel snow. 
  • Concrete- at times, certain cracks and chippings in the driveways are not clearly visible, but they do exist. When these exist, the salt that a person uses to melt snow and ice penetrates right through the openings and corrodes the steel reinforcements lying underneath the surface. 
  • Asphalt- we know that asphalt is already brittle in texture, but this means that your driveway is even more prone to chipping. Hence, the subject of snow plowing and rigors from the shoveling will chip the driveway. It will suffer terrible damage as a result of rigorous plowing, and larger chunks of asphalt may come off altogether. It is also possible that such an occurrence will force you to repave the driveway. 
snow on driveway

How to Avoid Damage while Plowing

You can combat heavy snowfall in several ways, such as clearing parking lots, roads and maintaining asphalt before the snow descends. But how can one secure their asphalt from the distressing damage snow plowing causes, from the abrasive salt and the freeze-thaw cycles? We have answers for you below:

Sealing and filling cracks

The best way to prepare for the snow is to inspect your driveway for cracks and openings. Then, fill and seal those well before the weather turns cruel. If you fail to address the cracks and openings, you make room for damage to set in. 

When you neglect to fill and sealing cracks, water will continue freezing and thawing in them all through winters. This will cause the cracks to widen and even spread into branches underneath. Water has to potential to penetrate under your damaged asphalt, and you can very well expect potholes and further cracking consequentially. 

Opting for alternative deicers

You can opt for a more eco-friendly material for melting snow. These include calcium chloride, urea, and other friendly alternatives to rock salt. While they do have corrosive effects, these are comparatively less extreme than rock salt. You only need to maintain their application. However, you have found this option somewhat unattractive during stormy and rough windy weather. 

Investing in Quality Solutions for Snow Removal

Many times, homeowners try to skimp extra costs by choosing inexperienced talent to plow snow from their driveway. We do understand how extra costs can put quite a strain on your budget but look at the positive side of it. Hiring experienced drivers from reputed companies will prevent you from incurring major repair costs later on.

Hence, the great idea is to set aside a sum all through the friendly months so that you can invest in hiring experienced and professional drivers in the tough winters. Their expertise will prevent damages to your asphalt and save you time as well. 

You can hire a reputable company or contractor to take care of snow removal. They can assess your property and identify damage and scraping that may have occurred by less experienced snowplow drivers. You could also map out a special track for the winters to set and establish markers for drivers to spot entranceways and curbs easily. 

Consider heated driveway mats

We believe these are the most hassle-free options one can find. The mats are energy efficient, so you can set them and forget them. The mats remain outdoors all through the winters, are durable enough for cars to drive over, and have a remote-controlled option that you can control while indoors. 

Budgeting for Pavement Preservation and Rejuvenation

Once the ice and snow start melting away, use a sealant for restoring the pavement back into a smooth surface. Invest in high-quality preservation and rejuvenation liquid that has an asphalt bead emulsion, penetrating chemistry, and special technology for locking the asphalt resins. 

Such a product will help preserve, rejuvenate and preserve your asphalt pavements. 

Heated Driveway Installation

This is a highly expensive option but also an effective and luxurious one. It keeps your driveway clear all through the winter months and your asphalt free from any snowplow damage. 

Snow Blower Blades

Plowing on new asphalt demands precision and extreme carefulness. To this end, you must keep from chipping your asphalt, despite rigorous shoveling by holding your snow plower’s blades at least an inch or half above the asphalt. This way, the surface will not come directly into contact with the brutal blades and keep the surface safe. 

shoveling snow on asphalt surface

How to Properly Deal with Snow Removal on New Asphalt Surface

Being a naturally porous substance, asphalt can absorb more water from our environment. During winters, water has a greater ability to penetrate asphalt. Thus, it expands and freezes the driveway underneath. This creates even more cracks and plenty of other problems for homeowners. 

Here are some shoveling tips for new asphalt surfaces in the winters:

1. Refrain from Metal Shovels

The number one enemy of asphalt driveways, especially the newer ones, is a metal shovel. It can damage your asphalt like anything, so the best thing to do is to use a lightweight plastic shovel for plowing the snow. 

Even with the lightweight plastic variety, we recommend holding the shovel at a shallow angle and ensuring you protect the driveway from the shoveling action. Aim for a steep angle when gripping and moving the shovel to dig through. 

2. Keep Your Eyes Open for Asphalt Failure

You may think your driveway is new, and hence right now, there is no need to be overly vigilant for it. In truth, it is all the more important to keep a close eye on your asphalt driveway and watch out for signs of potholes or miniature cracks.

Newly laid asphalt driveways must not suffer any damage till they have serviced you for at least a satisfactory period. Hence if you discover a crack in the early period, it could be indicative that you are not following proper maintenance protocols or that your structure is not as sturdy as it should have been. 

3. Be Selective Regarding De-ices for Snowplowing

Deicers are somewhat relentless on asphalt, so you need to be very careful when using them. It is best to entirely skip the deicers but if you cannot do that, then at least try avoiding the rock salt variety. 

Rock salt has a very damaging and toxic nature and also loses efficacy for temperatures below 15 degrees Fahrenheit. You could opt for the friendlier versions instead, such as magnesium chloride and others. These stay effective even for temperatures below zero degrees Fahrenheit.

Your next best option is calcium magnesium acetate, which works well even for temperatures like minus 25 degrees Fahrenheit. 

Snow Blowing- Best Option for Snow Removal

Often homeowners do not have the facility time to shovel their driveway themselves. With this disadvantage, they keep putting off shoveling the driveway, and thereon problems start building. It is especially beneficial for such people to hire professional snow removal services. 

Snow blowing is extremely safe for removing snow and ice off your driveways. Snow blowing is actually a machine, which an experienced individual operates from behind, or if it is a larger one, then a power unit controls the machine. 

A spiral, rotating blade removes the snow by propelling it upwards and on to the side. Today, this machine has evolved into a variety of models and features in the market, and you can pick one that fits your personal needs. 

The best advantage of using a snow blower is that it comes in compact sizes too, and you can store it easily in tight areas during the off-seasons. The snowblower also operates on the ground level. Hence the person behind it can see everything around the front and around even while operating the machine. 

It features hands-on control, so you get additional safety features and rest secured that no untoward accident will occur while plowing the snow. Snow blowing also gets the job done far quicker than manually shoveling snow and especially from narrow areas, like walkways, etc. time efficiency and safety are the highlights of snowplowing. 

deicers on asphalt

Salts and Deicers- Can they Damage asphalt?

Generally speaking, deicers or salts do not primarily cause direct damage to the asphalt or deteriorate it. However, there are certain indirect effects it gives rise to that necessitate using the salts very sparingly or avoiding them altogether. Let’s look at those below:

  • The freeze-thaw cycle rives root to pothole formation and certain damage resultantly. It exacerbates the use of salts and other deicers. The compounds contribute by lower the freezing water point and keeping it in liquid form, even in colder temperatures, to reduce icing. Unfortunately, the result of this is a more active freeze-thaw cycle.
  • Asphalt is much better than light-colored concrete at melting ice and snow naturally. If you subject it to heavy salts or chemical infused deicers, you destroy the asphalt’s natural tendency to melt ice faster. Asphalt is a darker compound; hence it has the ability to absorb more sunlight and get even hotter. This is why it works better without deicers and salts at melting winter snow.
  • When the snow melts and the salts or deicers run in liquid forms, they seep into the soil and run into storm drains. Eventually, these land into the local water bodies and damage plant and animal life. 

The Effect of Cold Weather on Asphalt (Freeze/thaw cycle)

The winter months mean frigid, brutal temperatures that can ruin asphalt in a number of ways. This season features constant thawing and freezing, also what we refer to as the freeze-thaw cycle that creates cracks and other damages in our driveway. 

In this condition, we must pay due attention to the external forces as they necessitate asphalt repairing. Because cold and low temperatures are constant all through winters, the asphalt is more prone to contracting.

This contraction frequency is what causes the cracks and significantly weakens the asphalt from the surface till deep inside. It is no surprise how such instances sharply reduce the life expectancy of our asphalt surfaces. 

Hence, we stress the importance of repair as invaluable to maintaining the integrity of your asphalt, despite the cold weather. 

Conclusion

Plowing on new asphalt is nothing short of a challenge each year. Any negligence or improper approaches can damage not only the surface of our asphalt driveway but penetrate right through it and cause more troubles.

From snowplowing to using lightweight plastic shovels, it is of utmost importance to use the right tools and techniques for shoveling ice and snow each year. Apart from this, regular checks and timely repairs are necessary to maximize the life expectancy and soundness of our asphalt driveways by a far measure.

So you are trying to figure out how long you have to wait before you drive on your brand-new pavers and look no further, here’s your answer. The final step of installing pavers is filling the gaps with sand, forming the joints.

Once it’s compacted, more sand is spread, filling any low spots, compacted once more and then you are good-to drive on it. 

So, how long before you can drive on pavers?

If you have had it sealed, you will need to wait 24 hours at least for the sealer to dry, maybe longer, depending on your climate region, but once it’s dry, you are ready to drive on it. Unlike many other driveway applications, such as asphalt or concrete, once the pavers are compacted and sanded, you can immediately drive on them. Asphalt and concrete have to set and cure before you can use them.

What are Pavers?

Pavers are an alternative option for asphalt or concrete slab driveways.

Pavers in their most common and simplest form, are square or rectangular shaped blocks, made of concrete, brick or natural cut stone. These are the ones that you will see most often.  Either they are in the form of an INTERLOCKING or ARCHITECTURAL SLAB. The interlocking block design is much more durable and longer-lasting, withstanding high traffic. Its edges create uniform lines and patterns.

The interlocking blocks withstand extreme temperatures much better than that of architectural slab. 

The slab design is more delicate; it’s much thinner and is actual soft concrete that is formed to LOOK like natural stone. It won’t endure much wear and tear and is mainly designed for foot traffic, even though it’s used for driveway purposes. Despite most pavers being made of some form of concrete or stone, there have been new developments in the industry and pavers are now being designed from recycled products, offering everyone a way to take care of the planet. 

drive on pavers

How Are Pavers Installed?

There are several steps involved in installing pavers, and most of the work requires a very strong, muscular back and is pretty hard physical labor. It’s recommended to hire a professional to ensure you get the best results, so once you find out how long before you can drive on pavers, and then drive on them, they don’t get ruined. 

Here are the steps of how pavers are installed:

  1. Excavation-factoring in slope and grade. Removing approximately 7” of ground below final grade.
  2. Plan a Retaining Edge- There will be a “border” or wall built to keep your pavers locked in. This may be bricks or blocks, but underneath there is what’s called an EDGE RESTRAINT SYSTEM. It’s a plastic border wall that is under the surface of the pavers.
  3. Base Preparation- adding 3\4” crushed rock to the excavated area prior to compacting will help a machine compactor glide easily over the surface. After initial compaction add 1-3” of more crushed stone. Repeat all steps until proper elevation\grade is reached for the pavers to be flush with ground level. All base prep is using crushed ROCK & NOT SAND at this point.
  4. Bedding Sand- Bedding sand is placed down approximately 1’ thick and is NOT compacted. As for the name, a bed is being made of sand, to place the pavers on.
  5. Installation of Pavers- The pavers are LIGHTLY PLACED in the sand, in-line with desired pattern or layout, depending on choice of pavers and homeowner’s design.
  6. Compact Round #3.0- Once all the pavers are placed down and a light coat of JOINT SAND is spread in the cracks by broom, compact the pavers again. Once compacted, spread more joint sand over the joints and fill in the “pattern lines.” Compacting may take several times, repeating the steps of sweeping joint sand across the pavers until no-more can be added.
  7. Optional staining or sealing at this time. If you choose not to seal, you are ready to use the surface. If you DO SEAL, follow all the necessary steps, to ensure it dries properly and you find out how long before you can drive on the pavers.
driving on pavers

HOW MUCH DO PAVERS COST TO INSTALL AND MAINTAIN?

The overall cost of how much it is going to cost you to install your dream paver driveway or patio depends on many different factors; one key point being the choice of material for the pavers. Depending on the contractor you hire and how many estimates you received, you will most likely be around $10-$19 per square foot for installation. Make sure the estimate you are getting is including all the base materials, preparations, labor and pavers needed to do the installation.

The maintenance of your new pavers should be relatively in-expensive as long as you hired a reputable contractor, the job was done correctly and you knew how long you had to wait before driving on them. Typical maintenance costs are very minimal compared to other driveway applications and include only:

  • Occasional Stone\brick\block modular replacement
  • Occasional weed pulling or treatments to keep weeds\grass out

That’s a relatively low cost list for maintenance, versus an asphalt, concrete or tar and chip driveway that requires resurfacing, resealing, pot-hole repair, crack repair and other maintenance requirements. This is one reason that the initial costs to install pavers are so expensive. It’s an INVESTMENT for your property and requires little-to no maintenance over the years.

Many people get some form of paver system installed as their driveway for several reasons:

  • The main one is that pavers can be permeable. This simply means that rain\moisture will seep and drain THROUGH it. 
  • A non-permeable driveway, such as an asphalt or resin surface is usually graded and sloped with drainage in mind. If you live somewhere that gets a lot of rain, pavers are a great choice. Due to them being permeable, the water will drain through, extending the life of the driveway significantly since there is never any standing water on it.
  • Aesthetic appeal
  • The endless variety of materials\colors
  • Offer’s better traction in rain and snow
  • Yes, you can use a snow plow on them, as long as there is some clearance for the plow not to hook the blocks.
driveway pavers

Being that the choices in pavers almost endless, it is important to that you have hired a reputable contractor to go over with you all the different product types and options available to you. The standard and most common choices of pavers are:

  • Plastic
  • Bluestone
  • Travertine
  • Flagstone
  • Cobblestone
  • Rubber
  • Brick 
  • Concrete

THINGS TO CONSIDER WHEN CHOOSING A PAVER DRIVEWAY

  • Do you want interlocking pavers? What is the design pattern?
  • Are you looking for a driveway to help with water run-off? Living somewhere there is a lot of rain\snow will factor in the type of permeable pavers
  • Do you want something that’s easy maintenance? 
  • Is there an HOA? 
  • Style? Color?
  • Would you prefer a material that will withstand HIGH traffic 
  • Can you SAVE MONEY?
  • If you live in a colder climate you can add a heating system to thaw snow and ice.

THE PROS AND CONS OF PAVERS VERSUS OTHER PAVING OPTIONS

Today, more and more people are getting away from traditional driveways and walkways that are paved asphalt, poured concrete or just gravel and are choosing pavers.  With the endless options and even recycled materials showing up as options; Gravel or grass filled plastic pavers are taking over in the “greener” movement and offer an eco-friendly approach.

Travertine, Marble, Cobble and Porcelain believe it or not, are used for pavers as well, but, in much more delicate applications. They look exquisite, but are extremely fragile and not very practical in high traffic\usage areas, so they’re primarily used for show only.

Flagstone is a very popular choice, it is naturally harvested and no- one piece is the same. It has a lower slip-factor, holds up longer than concrete but presents several design challenges; one being since no one piece is the same; designs are more difficult, following a natural layout.

Bluestone is very popular cut of stone. It is on the more expensive end of stone choices, but you can rest assured that it will last you a lifetime and withstand colder temperatures and ground heaving.

pavers for driveway

Concrete pavers are the most common paver found. There are plenty of styles and colors to choose from and finding a reputable contractor who installs them is easy. Over time however, moisture and temperature changes will deteriorate them and require upkeep and maintenance. Even though replacing an occasional block is relatively easy.

Brick, one of the original founding fathers, is a favorite go-to for many. It provides great curb appeal and they’re lots of colors to choose from. Brick is a ‘green’ choice; however tends to require regular maintenance and replacement as they deteriorate. 

CONCLUSION

Now that you learned how long before you can drive on pavers, you can pass that knowledge on and share everything else you learned as well.  When choosing your driveway surface, factor in your return on investment (ROI). 

Yes, pavers are much more expensive to install, but if you are not under a tight budget, many contractors advise going the route of installing them.  It’s longer lasting, lower maintenance costs and has great curb-side appeal. All the while, it adds value to your home and  provides  great traction in snow, rain and ice and once it’s installed you don’t have to wait long before you can drive one your pavers.

Most building owners know that the parking lot is a large part of their property. It is also the most frequently neglected. Asphalt or concrete surfaces that are not maintained over time can lead to costly replacements, vehicle damage, and injury risks to visitors.

Property owners should make sure parking lot cleaning and maintenance are conducted regularly to attract customers and avoid costly repairs and lawsuits.

Why it’s important to keep your parking lot clean

The appearance of your building’s exterior has a significant impact on potential clients. Maintaining an attractive building is a priority for property owners. Buildings with curb appeal draw in new tenants and customers and keep existing occupants happy. An attractive building shows that the office building, warehouse, or retail center is a professional, premier location.

Surveys have documented that consumers judge the quality of a shopping or commercial facility by the cleanliness of its exterior areas, including parking lots. When people come to your business, you want them to see pristine conditions. How you treat your facilities reflects how you treat other jobs.

A poorly maintained parking lot can become a danger to vehicles and pedestrians.

Keeping a parking lot safe for visitors should be your number one priority. Regular sweeping and parking lot cleaning reduces the chances of slip and fall accidents caused by small objects. 

Falling leaves or hard-packed snow can be slippery, which can cause your visitors severe injury and make you susceptible to liability. If injuries occur in your lot, your business could be held responsible, potentially costing you hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Removal of sand and loose pebbles improves braking time for vehicles trying to stop quickly.

cleaning parking lot

Regular cleaning helps protect your investment in your parking lot.

Parking lot cleaning reduces how often you need to repave and restripe. Concrete and asphalt wear down eventually. Excess dirt, rain, water, and garbage speed up that process.

The weight of a vehicle driving across the sand, dirt, and debris left in your parking lot acts as an abrasive. Abrasives shorten the pavement’s life and increase the frequency of seal coating and striping. When dirt is allowed to collect on the pavement, weeds can also grow, and their roots can cause cracking of the cement and asphalt. 

Removal of sand, dirt, and other trash saves property owners time and money in the long run.

An asphalt parking lot can last 25-30 years if it is cleaned regularly and well maintained. Concrete parking surfaces are extremely durable and can last up to 30 years with regular sweeping and yearly power washing. 

A clean parking lot minimizes pollution in our local waterways.

Keeping your lot clean discourages littering, keeps rodents and pests away, and prevents erosion. Sweeping can prevent the larger debris from going down a storm drain. Whenever there is rain, anything left on the parking lot will be picked up by the storm water runoff and flow into local waterways.

Dust on the lot can contain several different contaminants and toxins like vehicle lubricants, coolants and brake dust, petroleum products used in pavements, and other pollutants that fall on the parking area surface.

Parking lot cleaning and sweeping is a best lot management practice for eliminating storm water runoff and controlling dust. A regularly scheduled professional sweeping program will keep your commercial or retail property in compliance with all government environment regulations and requirements. Minimizing pollutants that could otherwise end up in the air we breathe and the water we drink is just good business. 

A clean parking lot repels Rodents and other pests.

Rodents and other pests are attracted to garbage and debris, where they can hide and search for food.

When rodents and pests move in, it is a sign of unsanitary conditions. Most people stay away from areas that have unsanitary conditions that can cause disease.

Most business and establishment owners want to make an excellent first impression on their customers and visitors. While they may not tell you about a clean, well-maintained parking lot, you can bet they will tell you about a dirty, poorly maintained lot.

parking lot cleaning

Property Owners have a responsibility to keep their exterior surfaces safe.

Each year, more than 9,000 pedestrians are injured or killed in parking lots and garages. While many injuries and deaths are due to driver negligence, poor lighting, or improper signage, a good portion are due to slip and falls on pavement surfaces.

Slip and falls in parking lots result from cracked or uneven pavement, potholes, debris and slippery substances on the pavement surfaces, and weather conditions. 

Premises liability law holds the owner of a parking lot responsible for watching over their property and making sure it is safe at all times. Failure to maintain your property is considered negligence in the eyes of the law.

Mary Butler, an older woman attending a funeral at an East St. Louis Church, slipped on loose gravel and fell into a pothole in the parking lot, twisting and fracturing one of her ankles. Within two weeks of the incident, she passed away due to complications associated with the fracture. A premises liability lawsuit was filed on behalf of the woman’s estate against the McCasland Church of God, alleging that the church’s failure to maintain and conduct regular parking lot cleaning created a hazardous situation, which resulted in the woman’s wrongful death.

cleaning for parking lot

Two primary methods of parking lot cleaning

Commercial sweeping

Regular, scheduled sweeping of your parking lot will get rid of dirt and debris. Sweeping is a form of asset preservation. Sweeping makes your asphalt look better for customers and other visitors. A clean surface allows you to more easily notice any cracks or damage in the pavement that needs to be repaired.

Getting the debris off the lot with regular parking lot cleaning helps prevent garbage, large sticks, or rocks from clogging drains, which can cause standing water that quickly erodes asphalt. 

Commercial sweeping equipment is designed to pick up small trash such as cigarette butt, or paper. They are not built to pick up large pieces of garbage or liquids. Commercial sweepers do not remove stains from parking lots. 

Pressure washing

Pressure wash the parking lot a few times per year to get rid of oil or any other chemicals on the pavement. Pressure washing with high-pressure water deep cleans dirt and spots. 

Pressure cleaning is effective in deep parking lot cleaning debris from your property’s exterior. To get the best results, use hot steamed water because it will soften all the stains and dirt from the ground. 

Any pressure washing contractor you hire should comply with both EPA and OSHA standards of practice. The EPA’s Clean Water Act is a federal law that stipulates that nothing but rainwater can go down a storm sewer. The UAMCC staff has heard stories of businesses being fined more than $10,000 for a first occurrence. Talk to your contractor. He or she should be educated in your local requirements and meet the minimum standards for capturing wash water runoff.

parking lot maintenance

The most common parking lot blemishes and how to clean them

Many materials build up on the surface of parking lots, such as dirt, sand, trash, grease, oil, algae, leaves, mud, etc. Parking lot material build-up is more than just an eyesore; it is an accident waiting to happen. 

Grease & Oil Stains

When you park your car or bike in a parking lot, sometimes oil can leak and get on the pavement. Oil leaks can cause permanent or harsh stains on the ground, which can be challenging to remove. If you leave the stains for an extended period, the leakage will become permanent. Wondering how to remove grease and oil stains from an asphalt lot.?

Start by blotting excess grease or oil with an absorbing agent like cat litter, baking soda, or sawdust left on overnight. Be sure to cover the absorbing agent pile with a tarp or towel, so it does not blow off or attract animals. Sweep up the absorbing agent and dispose of, so you are ready for parking lot cleaning. Clean the stain with dishwashing liquid or vinegar diluted with warm water in a 1:1 ratio and a wire brush.

Special products are used for parking lot cleaning of tough grease or oil stains. 

Asphalt: Trisodium phosphate bleach, and baking soda are effective at cleaning grease from asphalt. Apply the mixed compound to the stain and then scrub it away using a firm bristled broom. Be careful of using too much solvent or scrubbing too hard, as it will remove the stain and part of the asphalt. Once the stain is removed, thoroughly rinse off the asphalt until all solvent residue is gone.

Concrete: Cola and dishwashing liquid are useful for combatting grease spots on concrete. Start by pouring some cola on the stain until it saturates the whole area. Let the cola soak in overnight, and then scrub the area the next day using a 1 to 1 mixture of liquid dish detergent and warm water. Use a flexible but firm nylon brush to create a soapy lather, and the stain will lift away. Rinse until the water runs clear.

Mulch & Leaf Stains

Leaf and mulch stains can cause damage to asphalt or concrete pavements. You can clean the stains away by using soap and vinegar, two products easily found in every home. Spread a mixture of one to one vinegar and soap on the stained pavement surface and rub in a circular motion using a wire brush. Thoroughly remove the soap or vinegar after brushing with low-pressure water. 

If stains do not fade away, try to remove them with bleach and warm water. Allow bleach and water mixture to sit on the pavement surface for 30 minutes before rinsing with warm water at low pressure.  Bleach includes fading agents that should remove tough stains. 

driveway seal

Other parking lot cleaning and maintenance tips

Caring about your parking lot cleaning and regular maintenance increases the overall life of asphalt and concrete.

Perform a monthly visual lot inspection. Visual inspection is essential after you experience extreme weather such as high heat, hard rain, snow, or ice that can leave debris throughout the parking lot. Make note of areas of concern such as:

  • Cracks or wear holes
  • Leaves, oil or grease, or icy conditions.

Apply a Sealcoat after pressure washing an asphalt parking lot. 

To keep your asphalt parking lot in top shape and looking good for customers, it’s recommended that the lot’s surface be thoroughly cleaned at least twice a year. The asphalt should also be seal-coated every 3-5 years.   

Seal coating restores your asphalt parking lot’s surface to keep cracks at bay and slow natural erosion caused by weather conditions and changing seasonal temperatures.

A seal coat product covers the asphalt, adding a second layer atop  that acts as a protectant. Seal coats can ward off water damage as well as fading from UV rays and even fluids from passing vehicles.

Concrete roads require very little maintenance. Regularly scheduled parking lot cleaning and sweeping eliminates trash and debris build-up and reduces contaminants. 

Repair parking lot damage immediately after parking lot cleaning.

After your parking lot has been cleaned,you should be able to see any areas that need repair. If your parking lot is in good condition but has cracks, potholes, or minor flaws, spot filling should be done to prevent them from spreading. 

Suppose you notice many cracks, crumbling, large potholes, or other more considerable flaws. You might want to consider contacting your paving contractor to come out and evaluate your parking lot’s condition and determine the best type of repair. A paving contractor can talk to you about your needs and budget and advise you whether an overlay, reconstruction, or repaving would be your best option.  

Regularly scheduled parking lot cleaning via sweeping, periodic pressure washing, and treatment of stubborn stains will help to maintain the “curb appeal of your property”, eliminate safety risks, protect and extend the life of your investment.