Before a potential customer or tenant steps inside your establishment, the first thing they usually notice is the appearance of your parking area. How well a parking lot is maintained, or how degraded it appears at first sight, speaks volumes regarding your business’s upkeep.
Parking lot cleaning and maintenance may be a year-round task, however, it is during spring – after all the ice of winter has melted – that it requires more attention in order to restore your parking lot to its pristine appearance.
Before actual repairs and restoration can take place, you need to prep your lot. Otherwise, sealants and fillers won’t adhere properly to the pavement surface.
Below are some steps to ensure a thorough cleaning of your parking lot.
- Get rid of unwanted vegetation. Weeds, fallen leaves, and broken branches are some of the most common forms of vegetation that litter parking lots. During winter, vegetation can be left unchecked. This can cause obstructions that can lead to accidents and injuries. Sweep off leaves, twigs, and any other visible trash. Pull out weeds from between cracks to prevent further damage to the pavement.
- Clear loose debris. Use an asphalt broom with strong and sturdy bristles to sweep off any loosened pavement chips, dust or gravel particles, sand, and deicer residue. Sweeping, with the aid of a reliable and powerful blower, would be ideal, to ensure that no particles are left behind.
- Clean cracks and potholes before filling. Using a wire brush, sweep cracks and potholes completely, until they are free of sand or dust. Dirt in cracks can prevent sealants and fillers from adhering properly.
- Power wash. If your space is small enough, power wash the entire lot, while paying close attention to cracks, holes, and curbs. This is to ensure that no debris is left after all the sweeping and blowing.
- Remove stains. Oil, grease and gas spills are common stains found on parking lots, and can be a nightmare to deal with. Asphalt Kingdom’s Universal Degreaser Cleaner is an eco-friendly yet strong degreaser that works wonders in removing tough stains on your pavement.
- Fill cracks. Now that most of the actual cleaning is done, it is time to fill cracks on your pavement. Ensure that surface and side walls of cracks and potholes are clean and dry, and use the appropriate type of crack filler – whether it is cold or hot pour. Cold pour is recommended for small and shallow cracks, while hot pour is ideal for fissure and holes that are 1/2 inch wide or larger.
Hot pour crackfilling requires a special machine to melt rubber blocks, but it is much more durable than cold pour. Crack filling machines like the RY10 Pro are able to melt and apply the crackfiller so you can be on top of your pavement maintenance. The crackfiller also has a shelf life of several years.
- Sealcoat, as needed. When pavement starts to lose its color, or is starting to turn grey, it is a sign of deterioration. Oxidation can allow your pavement to fail prematurely if it isn’t addressed in a timely manner. To test for oxidation, pour a bit of water on your pavement. If the water forms beads, the surface is sealed. However, if the water seeps in, the surface is not sealed and is vulnerable to UV and moisture damage. If this is the case, sealcoating would be highly advised, to extend the life span of your pavement.
- Restriping the lot. Whether a fresh coat of sealant is needed or not, the lines and markings on your parking lot should be clear and visible at all times to ensure smooth traffic and avoid untoward accidents. If the paint is starting to flake and peel off, it is time to restripe your parking lot. Using proper and reliable line striping equipment can ensure a speedy and accurate application.
Parking lot cleaning might be time-consuming, but a well-maintained space not only looks good, it also tells your customers and tenants how much you care for them.
Asphalt Kingdom can help.
We have a team of expert advisors that are here to provide you with a free expert consultation. We can help you with any questions regarding parking lot cleaning and will be happy to provide you with our honest cut to the chase guidance.