Blacktopping a driveway can be a large project and while most people hire a contractor to take on the job, this type of project can be a do-it-yourself project. To blacktop a driveway will be a messy project so make sure that there are plenty of clean-up supplies readily available.
Steps To Blacktop a Driveway
There are several basic steps to blacktop a driveway. The whole process is divided into 5 simple steps below to understand it clearly.
Clean the Driveway
Go through the existing driveway and pull all plants that have grown up between cracks and along the sides. Pressure wash the driveway to make sure that all dirt and debris is removed. Let the driveway completely dry prior to moving onto the next step.
Fill the Cracks
Use an asphalt patch to fill any cracks in the existing driveway. Large cracks should have sand filled into them up to a quarter of the way and then the patch placed on top of that. Use a tamper to tamp down the asphalt. Asphalt patch can be purchased at most home improvement stores.
Fill the Holes
Use a mixture of sand and asphalt sealer until it is a thick consistency. Taking a trowel, fill all holes and smooth the tops so that there are no ripples. The sealer should be allowed to dry overnight.
Re-clean the Driveway
Sweep the driveway thoroughly, removing all debris. If necessary, lightly hose the surface. If the surface is wet, allow to completely dry before proceeding to the next step.
Apply the Sealer
At the top of the driveway, pour a puddle of the sealer and using a brush applicator, spread a thin, even coat across the driveway in an arc motion. Slowly work your way across the driveway spreading a thin, even layer of the sealer. Asphalt sealer can be purchased at most home improvement stores or hardware stores.
It is better to apply two thin coats of sealer. Two thin coats will allow for a smoother and more durable finish than one thick coat. After the first coat is applied, wait until it is fully dry and cured before applying the second coat. This is generally between 4 and 12 hours.
New driveways should be allowed to fully cure before the seal coat is put on it. Curing a new driveway can take about six months.
Be sure to block off the driveway to both foot and car traffic. No vehicles should drive on it for at least 24 hours, allowing it to dry completely. Clean up any messes with a citrus based cleaner. It is best to blacktop a driveway starting in the morning so that the driveway will have full, direct sun to help it dry.