How to Repair Cracks in Blacktop Driveways
If you have a crack or split in your asphalt or blacktop driveway, you'll need to repair it as quickly as you can. Cracks can be caused by the pressure of vehicles, but the driveway can also be made vulnerable to this damage by the cold weather, followed by a long hot spell. These weather patterns can quickly make a large crack in your blacktop driveway, so to prevent it getting out of hand, you need to repair it before your car tire falls into the crack, or before your neighbors start protesting about the split in your driveway. Repairing a blacktop driveway can be done easily by following a quick step-by-step guide.
Step 1 - Clean the Crack
Before you begin, you will have to make sure that the crack is perfectly clean. If you don't clean the crack properly, you may find that the asphalt filler will not hold together correctly, and this can mean that the crack reappears very quickly. You may also have seeds growing in the crack which could cause damage to your blacktop driveway, so cleaning it out is the best solution. Use a vacuum cleaner to begin, and then sweep out the crack. Once you have done this, use a cloth to wipe up grease and oil which might have been split near the crack, as this will also prevent the repair filler from sticking.
Step 2 - Open up the Crack Filler
You can buy a product which contains an asphalt filler and sealant particularly designed for cracks such as this. Use a small knife or a pair of scissors to cut through the top of the asphalt filler, and then squeeze the tube slowly along the crack. You may need to use a caulking gun for some makes of filler, but most come in a handy squeezable tube. When you begin the process of filling the crack, you may need to add layers of rocks or stones to the bottom of a large crack, in order not to run out of filler before the hole is sealed.
Step 3 - Add the Sealant
Once the filler has gone into the crack in your blacktop driveway, you can start adding the sealant (following manufacturers instructions, of course). Break the foil seal on the tube of sealer, and then squeeze this down into the crack as well. You may need to use a small nail to break the seal.
Step 4 - Smooth Down the Crack
Now you have applied both filler and sealant, use your putty knife to flatten the edges of the filler so that they line up evenly with the rest of the driveway. You can ensure that the driveway is completely filled with your filler and sealant by pressing down lightly on the mixture before you leave it to set. Remove any extra sealant or filler with your cloth, and then leave to dry for 24 hours.