Maintaining a house can be stressful and costly. However, it is an essential part of protecting your real estate investment. While you may already mow the grass and clean the inside of your home, maintaining your home's driveway is also important. The driveway's main purpose may be to park vehicles, but it is also an imperative part of your home's curb appeal and value. Considering that replacing a 1000-square foot driveway can cost up to $7,000, cleaning and maintaining your home's driveway is smart for preventing this costly and overwhelming update. Using this guide, you will understand how to clean and repair your home's asphalt driveway.
Your driveway is a large surface that can be time-consuming to clean. Fortunately, using a pressure washer is an efficient way to remove dirt and debris from this large surface.
To get started, consider using a medium-duty pressure washer that offers between 2,000 and 3,000 PSI, or pounds per square inch of water pressure. This is a sufficient amount of water pressure for removing stubborn dirt, dust, and mud from your driveway without the need of toxic chemicals.
Use a broom to sweep debris off the driveway. Then, connect your pressure washer to your outdoor garden spigot. Hold the sprayer nozzle a few feet away from the driveway's surface and begin spraying the asphalt in a side-sweeping motion. Work your way down the entire driveway until the entire asphalt surface has been washed.
If you notice stains on the asphalt while washing the driveway, a more involved cleaning may be necessary. Removing stains from the asphalt is possible, but you should avoid using toxic chemicals that can harm the environment and the landscaping around your home.
To remove stains in an effective, eco-friendly manner, add the following ingredients to an outdoor sprayer:
- 2 gallons of water
- 2 cups of baking soda
Dissolve the baking soda into the water by shaking the sprayer's container. Spray the solution generously on stained areas of your asphalt. Use a soft-bristled brush to scrub the baking soda and water into the discolored areas. Allow it to sit and soak for a few minutes before rinsing off with your pressure washer.
Sodium bicarbonate, or baking soda, will begin to bubble and fizz when it makes contact with water on a surface. This carbonation will eat through heavy residue without negative effects on the environment or your health.
A crack in your driveway is not only unappealing, but it can also be dangerous. If you have children who ride their bikes, skates, or scooters on the driveway, a crack may cause them to fall and injure themselves. In addition, friends, family, and neighbors may trip and fall due to broken pieces of asphalt. Thankfully, you can repair these cracks in your asphalt driveway.
Cracks that are less than a ½-inch wide can be restored with an asphalt-emulsion filler. Apply this filler to the cracks using a caulking gun. Be sure to smooth the filler over the crack using a putty knife, as well. This will ensure the emulsion filler dries in an even, attractive manner.
If the crack in your asphalt is larger than a ½-inch wide, you will need to fill it in with sand before covering it with an asphalt compound. Pour in the driveway sand and pack it down using your hand, but make sure the sand reaches the top of the cracks. Then, cover the entire crack with wet asphalt compound. Multiple layers of the asphalt compound will be needed to cover the crack evenly. For larger issues, contact an asphalt patching service.
Maintaining your home's appeal and value will require focusing time and energy on your driveway. With these tips, you will know how to clean and repair an asphalt driveway without a great deal of stress.