Common Mistakes Homeowners Make During A DIY Asphalt Patch Repair

Over the years, you are bound to see a few potholes or pits show up in your asphalt driveway, especially if it is not well maintained. There are numerous products available at just about any home improvement store that are formulated for patching asphalt. Even though by reading the instructions on most of these repair formulations you would assume this is a simple process, there is a lot of room for mistakes if you don't know what you are doing. Here are a few of the common mistakes you should work to avoid if you intend on tackling a DIY asphalt patch job on your driveway. 

Mistake: Not taking the time to appropriately clean the area before applying the asphalt patch material. 

Why? Before you begin an asphalt patching project on your driveway, you have to clean the area thoroughly and remove any debris, loose or broken pieces of asphalt, and even dirt. Use a broom or scrub brush to briskly push away all of the debris. It is even a good idea to spray down the area with a high-pressure hose and allow it to dry. If there is any dirt or debris in or around the pothole when you apply the filler material, it will prohibit the filler from adhering to the existing asphalt surface. 

Mistake: Not compacting the filler materials as much as possible. 

Why? As you are putting the asphalt patch material into the pothole,you must use a tamper or shovel to firmly compress the material to remove any excess air. Compacting the filler is important because not doing so could lead to an unstable fill that is hiding air pockets. Air pockets in the filler once dry will make the surface weak and prone to breakage and sinking. With each scoop of filler, firmly press downward to eliminate any air. 

Mistake: Not mounding the material over the pothole once it is filled. 

Why? As the asphalt patch material dries and hardens, it will change density and size slightly. If you only apply the filler material to the pothole and level out the top, there is a good chance that the material will sink down into the hole as it cures. While you are filling the pothole with the patch filler, mound the filler slightly over the surface level of the hole itself to allow extra for sinking and shrinking. 

For more information on fixing holes in your asphalt, contact a local paving company.