Your parking lot may have taken a beating from the sun’s UV rays and extensive traffic this past summer, and it might not be able to handle the effects of winter to come. As you may know, the winter season brings forth many challenges to asphalt and concrete pavement. After all, a Midwest winter isn’t complete without snowstorms, ice storms, and freezing temperatures in a constant thawing and re-freezing cycle. Your business’s parking lot might require extensive repairs in the spring if you don’t prepare it for the next few months.

There are many ways to make sure your asphalt or concrete parking lot is protected from the impending harsh winter weather, and to make sure your repair costs are at a minimum…

6 Ways to Prepare Your Parking Lot for Winter:
CLEAN IT UP!

Address any chemical or oil spills ASAP to prevent new cracks from forming in the future.

With the help of a blower or sweeper, clear away any leaves, dirt, trash, and other debris from the parking lot surface. Debris objects cause damage by holding moisture in the same spot for an extended period of time. But, most of the damage is actually caused by snow plows dragging and grinding random debris against asphalt or concrete surfaces. Failing to regularly clear your parking lot of debris can cause seriously expensive issues that are 100% preventable. Besides, even if cleaning debris didn’t help the pavement– it’s the right thing to do if you value curb-appeal and want clients/customers to find your business more attractive.

WHEN’S THE LAST TIME THE PARKING LOT WAS SEAL COATED?

Take a good look at your parking lot. If it’s looking not as good as it once did and generally run-down, be sure to have it seal coated before winter temperatures come. Sealcoating is a very affordable, quick, and easy service that makes your parking lot last longer and look better. It seals minor cracks that occur over time, and offers defense against the deterioration caused by UV rays from the sun. Depending on the amount of visitors your parking lot gets, it must be seal coated once every 1-3 years in order to safeguard your pavement investment.

MAKE NECESSARY REPAIRS

As mentioned above, if you get the parking lot seal coated, then all minor cracks will be filled in. However, larger cracks/potholes require different treatment. If you decide against sealcoating the lot, you’ll still want to have all existing cracks sealed before winter, for sure.

Cracks allows for water to get deep-down below the asphalt surface. Once this happens, the water then freezes and expands. Come spring, that water fully melts demolishes the subsurface, which results in severe breakage that can turn into potholes.

INSPECT THE PARKING LOTS DRAINAGE SYSTEM

If you notice areas of the parking lot with constant puddles or standing water, take action as quickly as possible. These indicate serious problems within the drainage system of your parking lot. This type of problem can severely negatively affect both your parking lot and the entire property. Since snow often melts and re-freezes, you’ll want to be positive that your parking lot drainage system is able to handle the runoff. Water overflow from a drainage system can turn your parking lot into an icy hazard very quickly!

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FRESHEN-UP PARKING LINES AND PAVEMENT MARKINGS

If you get the lot sealcoated, you’ll most likely get some new parking lines and pavement markings to go on top of it. If you don’t want to get a fresh seal coat application, it’s still in your best interest to get the parking lines re-painted. Parking lines that are faded or difficult to see make navigating the lot difficult and potentially dangerous for you, your employees, clients, and customers. Fresh pavement markings make regular traffic run much smoother in the case of low-light conditions, ice, or snow dusting on the lot.

ARRANGE FOR A PROFESSIONAL SNOW REMOVAL SERVICE
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Having your snow removal method locked-down way before the snow actually comes is best practice for peace-of-mind. It’s nice to know that the snow will be cleared as soon as possible in order for you keep your business running. Going over any snow-plow related problems beforehand with the snow removal company is crucial. You’ll want to make them aware of any sloping issues, irregularities in the surface, or curbs that can be accidentally hit. The regular removal of snow/ice on your lot while avoiding asphalt damage is a priority and definitely achievable.

Our team of pavement professionals at Pavement Solutions, LLC have decades of experience in protecting pavement against harsh winters. For more information on how we can prepare your parking lot for the winter to come, or to inquire about our commercial snow removal services, please contact us!

Posted by C. Butler on 10/12/20