Things made from asphalt and concrete may sound like they could last a hundred years, if not forever. But the reality is that establishments and spaces like parking lots have a lifespan of only 25 to 30 years. Not bad, right? But for your parking spaces to last for up to three decades, repairs and proper maintenance are a must. After all, whether they are made out of concrete or asphalt, commercial parking lots are very much exposed to a number of deterrents like temperature, climate, weathering, and foot traffic.
The good thing is that it is actually easy to know if your parking lot is due for repair and maintenance. Some telltale signs are very easy to spot, while others require you to do a quick but thorough inspection of the area. To help you with your parking lot check-up, here are the signs that you should look for and take note of:
1. Cracks on the ground
This is one of the most obvious and common signs that your parking lot needs attention, but far too often, it is ignored and neglected. Understandably, people would usually think that a crack on the pavement is harmless and then decide to leave it be. But while cracked pavements are natural signs of aging, they could lead to bigger problems if they are not addressed immediately and properly. A small crack that you happen to spot one day will surely grow over time, leaving more property damage and an even more expensive repair cost.
If you happen to see cracks forming on your parking grounds, the best thing to do is to fill it in with new asphalt and concrete. However, if you noticed that the cracks are beyond your own powers of repair, you can always ask for assistance from a commercial asphalt paving company and let them do the job for you.
2. Growing weeds and grass
Cracks that are left unattended for long periods of time can become a breeding ground for grass and weeds. Looking for misplaced greens on the dark ground is one quick way of finding the cracks and holes on your parking lot, but more importantly, weeds and grass can also cause damage to your asphalt. No matter how tiny and harmless they may look, their growth can affect what is happening underneath and into the layers of your parking ground. So after using them to spot cracks and potholes, make sure to pull them out especially before applying fillers to cover the cracks.
Not only do they look ugly, but potholes can also pose a lot of danger both to pedestrians and passing vehicles. Potholes are also often unnoticeable while driving and when drivers fail to see this, it can lead to a bumpy, uncomfortable, and even inconvenient ride. Potholes can also become a major inconvenience as it can damage a vehicle’s wheels or trap it in, leaving vehicles unable to move.
Potholes are usually caused by underlying water that has already seeped through the asphalt’s cracks, thereby affecting the structure of the soil underneath your parking lot. When you spot potholes on the ground, then it is indubitably time for an asphalt parking lot repair. No questions asked. Just like the cracks, neglecting potholes will only worsen the situation.
4. Faded parking lot colors
Over time, you will notice that the heavy dark colors of asphalt have turned to a light gray. This is caused by exposure to harsh sunlight and is another inevitable change as your parking lot ages. While the change in color itself does not pose any serious threats, it is definitely still a sign that your parking lot is already old and worn, and a repair may be due in the following days.
The faded color can also make your parking lot lose its “appeal” as it does not look fresh and new anymore. If appearances are important for you, then doing a complete makeover is not a bad idea. Not only will you get to have a brand new-looking space, but you will also get to address other underlying problems such as potholes, cracks, dents, and warping.
Some may not be familiar with this but warping is basically a distorted or unevenness on the once completely flat parking lot. You would notice that there are parts that are a little elevated like a tiny, almost unnoticeable hill, or that there are minor dents where heavy vehicles are usually parked. Warping is a sign of a faltering foundation and that is why you should address it immediately. If the damage has grown out of control, it might even call for a complete pavement replacement.
6. Pooling water
You would think that pooling water can only be naturally found where there are potholes and cracks as they are able to trap water. However, where there are no potholes and cracks, if you happen to spot a pool of water on your parking lot then that is a glaring sign that there is something wrong with your ground maintenance, or that the parking lot is no longer leveled properly. There might also be problems with the drainage system nearby and while it is not situated directly on your parking lot, pools of water constantly running over the pavement can cause other damages. Take pooling water as a clear sign that your parking space is due for repairs.
Repairs and maintenance of parking lots are usually bypassed by space owners because of the effort and attention that they need to put in. Thinking that it will do for another year and further delaying repairs could only lead to bigger problems that will inevitably leave your pockets lighter and emptier.
As they say, prevention is always better than cure, and that goes the same for your parking lot repair and maintenance. If you want your parking lots to survive for another 25 or 30 years, especially those in big commercial spaces and cannot afford prolonged inconveniences, then regular minimal repairs are a worthy investment and a healthy practice. But should you need professional assistance, just call this commercial paving contractor in Winston Salem and they’ll make sure to do the job for you in no time.