It happens virtually every year to almost every asphalt contractor. One or more clients call as soon as the days have begun to become noticeably shorter, concerned that having asphalt sealcoated remained on the list of things to do all summer and fearful that it may now be too late. The good news is that you can still have your asphalt surface sealed in the fall. A few minor adjustments are all that is needed to ensure a successful sealcoating job. The exact nature of the adjustments depend on a variety of factors that the asphalt professional must evaluate.
Sealcoating Successfully In The Fall – What To Know
In some parts of the country, autumn temperatures can drop early in the season, making sealcoating challenging if not impossible. The majority of sealants contain a high volume of water that must be evaporated for the sealant to cure. If temperatures fall below freezing before the sealant has dried, the bond can fail and the sealant may not adhere to the asphalt. In the greater Houston area, temperatures only dip below freezing about 10 days during an average winter. However, Texas weather can be unpredictable, so contractors still need to give predicted overnight lows a moment of consideration.
The temperature while the work is being done can affect how quickly the sealant will dry. The lower the temperature, the longer the sealant will need for drying and curing. Just as an example, sealant applied while the temperature is 80 degrees Fahrenheit will dry twice as fast as sealant applied when the temperature is 60 degrees. Lower the temperature from 80 to 45 degrees Fahrenheit and sealant will take three times as long to dry.
Houston residents are all too familiar with the term, “relative humidity.” The higher the humidity, the more difficulty the sealant will have evaporating its moisture. Combine high humidity with low temperatures, and the drying time for sealant is sharply extended.
Sealants that receive the benefit of UV rays cure faster than those that do not. The reduced hours of sunlight in the fall require contractors to schedule work to maximize the benefits of sunlight. Try to end work early enough for the sealant to receive at least three hours of strong sunlight. Shaded areas may need even more drying time; they not only do not receive the benefits of direct sunlight, but the temperatures in these areas will be lower as well.
Where to Find Help
Correctly done, sealcoating can help add years to the life of an asphalt surface. LDC Paving has the expertise to evaluate all factors that contribute to quality asphalt work. Our highly trained staff members know how to schedule sealcoating, asphalt paving, parking lot striping and asphalt repairs to ensure the highest quality results at affordable prices. We provide our services throughout the Houston metropolitan area and surrounding towns. You can use our convenient form to request an online quote, or give us a call at 832-640-7296.
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