Removing Weeds From Your Driveway Before A Sealing Appointment

Construction & Contractors Articles

Asphalt maintenance is required every several years to make sure that your driveway is strong, smooth, and durable. Maintenance involves the placement of a sealer across the driveway surface to protect the asphalt from erosion. If your driveway seems to have weeds and grass growing through cracks and openings, then you need to kill the greenery before you schedule a sealing. Weeds can force the asphalt to buckle from underneath the driveway and they can stop the sealer from adhering properly. Keep reading to find out how to get rid of the weeds.

Pull and Kill Plants

The first step in removing the weeds from your asphalt driveway is to pull up any loose plants that have formed through cracks and openings. Place your hand against the base of the roots and twist the plant as you release it from the ground. This will help to release the roots and the foliage all at once. If roots remain in the ground or if plants are not loose enough for you to remove them, then boil a pot of water. Pour the boiling water on the remaining weeds. The water will kill the weeds, roots, and seeds in the ground.  

When you use the water, do not add any salt, vinegar, or other common weed killing treatments to get rid of the greenery. Salt will pull the natural oils from the asphalt and acid materials may break down the binding agents within the driveway.

Treat the Driveway Edge

Once you have removed driveway weeds, use the boiling water to kill weeds that grow on the edge of the driveway. These plants can cause damage as well. Once the weeds are killed, spread a thick layer of corn gluten meal along the edge of the asphalt. Corn gluten meal is a protein byproduct that is produced when corn is milled. The meal will prevent new weeds from taking seed and the powder will not damage your driveway. You can spread a small amount of the meal in driveway cracks as well if you are concerned about new weeds forming.

Another good way to prevent new weeds from growing underneath your driveway is to install edging material along the length of the asphalt. Plastic edging is cost effective and easy to install, so measure your driveway and purchase the material from your local home store. Use a shovel to dig about six to eight inches into the earth around the sides of your driveway and set the edging in the ground. Use a rubber mallet to secure the edging in place so the upper lip sits against the asphalt. Fill in dirt around the edging afterwards.

Fill in Cracks

If large cracks remain in your driveway after you have removed weeds, then you will need to fill in the openings before a sealing is completed.  secure the openings, purchase a stone grade asphalt crack filler from your local home store. This filler contains rubberized or polymer materials like other asphalt crack products, but it also has stone or aggregate material to give the opening more strength.

Use a broom to remove the debris from the asphalt crack and then use a trowel to scoop the filler out of its container. Spread the filler in the crack and use a small amount of pressure to compact it. Scrape your trowel over the area to make sure it is flat. The repaired area can be used right away, but it may take several months for the filler to completely cure.  

If you want your driveway to last a long time, then you need to make sure that you schedule regular asphalt maintenance and sealing appointments. If you notice weeds in the asphalt before you are able to arrange for a professional sealing, then follow the tips above.

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10 February 2015

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