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What's It Like to Sealcoat an Airport?

Sealcoating an airport entails the same easy processes as other asphalt surfaces, while providing significant additional safety benefits.

Judson Burdon
Posted by Judson Burdon on October 03

Like any other asphalt surface, airport runways and aprons need to be maintained properly to avoid damage. This responsibility is even greater at airports to prevent cracks or potholes that could jeopardize the safety of aircraft and passengers. 

This increased importance on maintenance does not make the process any more complicated than for other blacktops, however. It might seem a bit intimidating, but pilots and ground crews across North America have been enjoying the benefits and pride associated with maintaining their airports themselves

Such is the case with Sven, of Cooking Lake Airport—the sixth-largest private airport in Alberta, Canada—who sealcoated the surface, with great results. 


Even after weeks of storing the sealer in a container, all it took was a few minutes of mixing and circulating, and it was ready to be applied.

“It was the best stuff ever to mix after sitting for so long," says Sven. "No sludge at the bottom blocking it all up, [I] did not need the mixer at all.”

Once the sealer was stirred and equipment primed, he was able to add a beautiful new coat to the runway in about 12 hours—without having to hire a contractor to seal it for him. 

Take a look at the finished result below!

Sealcoating an Airport

Not only was the process simple, but it will also have positive, long-lasting impacts far beyond enhanced aesthetics and general protection from the sun’s drying rays—some of which have already been seen by other folks at Cooking Lake!

Jim, another member of the team, noticed “a significant reduction in the need for de-icer this past winter, owing to the dark black color absorbing heat from the sun and sublimating the ice much faster.”

In addition to saving de-icer, it also improves safety, by reducing icy conditions that create an unsafe environment for aircraft and vehicles on the runway. 

Now with the surface of the runway sealed, Sven and his colleagues at Cooking Lake are excited to paint fresh lines on the surface. 

Topics: Asphalt Maintenance, Sealcoating

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