Homeowners love concrete driveways because they’re more cost-effective than asphalt driveways, last a long time, and can sustain the weight of heavy vehicles when they’re installed correctly. What’s more, they also look good.
Typically, a driveway can last for as many as three decades when given the right attention from a homeowner. In countries that have cold winters and warm springs and summers, this involves care, maintenance, and repair.
Unless you really want contractors to get more construction work, then as a homeowner, you should use a sealant to protect your driveway from the extreme freeze-thaw cycles of winter. Likewise, you should avoid using metal shovels and harsh de-icing substances. Instead, use gentler materials to remove the snow without damaging your driveway.
With the new season around the corner, your job isn’t done. Follow these steps to improve the longevity of your concrete driveway this spring:
#1 Start with a Good Clean
As spring takes over, the ice and snow will melt away. Underneath, you may find leaves, stones, dirt, rust twigs, branches, dirt, motor oil, brake fluid and more. Sweep away as much of the debris as you can. Then use an outdoor cleaner and power washer to clear the driveway. For oily stains, you may need a degreaser to absorb the stains. Alternatively, you can try baking soda, dishwasher detergent, or cola to remove the stain.
You may also notice growths such as algae, mould, or mildew under the snow. A non-caustic cleaner can eliminate such growths without damaging the surface.
#2 Check the Driveway
Now that you have a clean driveway, keep an eye out for cracks and other signs of damage. Tiny cracks are normal and usually nothing to worry about. However, large and wide cracks can be problematic. Sometimes, you may notice weeds growing through the cracks of a driveway. Wait for rainfall to see if water is pooling on your driveway. This can also be a bad sign and could point to issues in the driveway’s foundation. Likewise, a sinking driveway will also need attention.
#3 Repair Any Problems
It’s advisable to fix any problems with your driveway immediately. If the cracks grow larger, they can turn into potholes. Such issues can damage your car, leaving you with hefty repair bills. Someone walking on the driveway, such as a mailman, could also get injured. Not only is this bad for your karma, but it can result in liability issues.
It’s advisable to hire a professional contractor to repair your driveway. For instance, licensed concrete contractors like CanWest Concrete do a great job with concrete services because of their decades of experience. They can also efficiently remove a concrete driveway that’s beyond repair. Working with such a recognized name in the industry will help you improve the longevity of your driveway.
#4 Protect Your Driveway
Now that your driveway has been cleaned and repaired, it may be time to reseal it. Typically, you should seal your concrete driveway every four to five years. You can buy a sealant from your local hardware stores and carefully follow the instructions or use the services of a reputable contractor.
With a little effort every season, you can make sure that your concrete driveway looks good and stays in excellent condition. Don’t hesitate to seek professional help if you need it.