Winter Is Coming: A Comprehensive Guide on How to Prepare Asphalt Parking Lots for Winter

Winter Is Coming: A Comprehensive Guide on How to Prepare Asphalt Parking Lots for Winter

With the approach of winter as days grow shorter and the temperatures drop, it’s crucial for property owners and managers to prepare their asphalt parking lots for the challenges that winter brings. Harsh winter conditions can wreak havoc on asphalt surfaces, causing cracks, potholes, and other damage. To help you protect your investment and ensure the safety of your visitors, we have compiled this comprehensive guide on preparing asphalt parking lots for winter.

Perform a thorough inspection:

Before winter arrives, conducting a comprehensive inspection of your parking lot is essential. Look for signs of damage, such as cracks, potholes, or uneven surfaces. Identifying and addressing these issues early on can prevent them from worsening during the winter months.

Clean the parking lot

Clearing your parking lot of debris, leaves, and other loose materials is important in preparing for winter. Debris can trap moisture, leading to deterioration of the asphalt. Regular sweeping and power washing can help maintain the integrity of the surface and prevent future damage.

Repair cracks and potholes

Cracks and potholes can quickly worsen during winter due to freeze-thaw cycles. Fill in any existing cracks with a quality crack filler and repair potholes promptly. Hiring a professional asphalt contractor ensures the repairs are done correctly and will withstand the winter weather.

Sealcoat the surface

Applying a layer of sealcoat to your asphalt parking lot before winter can provide additional protection against moisture, UV rays, and harsh chemicals. Sealcoating also helps extend your pavement’s lifespan and enhances its appearance.

Check and maintain drainage

Proper drainage is crucial for preventing water from pooling on the surface of your parking lot. Inspect and clear all drainage systems, including gutters, drains, and catch basins, to ensure they function optimally. This helps prevent water from seeping into the asphalt and causing damage during freezing temperatures.

Install snow poles and markers

Installing snow poles and markers can help protect your parking lot from damage caused by snowplows. By clearly marking the lot’s edges, snowplow operators can see where they need to stop and prevent accidental scraping or impact with curbs and landscaping.

Provide ample lighting

Winter brings shorter daylight hours, making it crucial to ensure proper lighting in your parking lot. Adequate lighting not only improves visibility but also enhances safety for both drivers and pedestrians. Check and replace any burnt-out bulbs and consider installing energy-efficient LED lights for long-lasting illumination.

Plan for snow and ice removal

A well-defined snow and ice removal plan is essential for maintaining a safe parking lot during winter. Hire a professional snow removal service or invest in the necessary equipment to clear snow efficiently. Ensure you have a supply of ice melt or sand on hand to prevent slip-and-fall accidents.

Preparing your asphalt parking lot for winter is a proactive step that can save you time, money, and potential liabilities. By following the helpful guidelines outlined in this guide, you can minimize damage, extend the lifespan of your asphalt, and ensure the safety of all who use your parking lot. Remember, proper maintenance and timely repairs are key to protecting your investment and keeping your parking lot in optimal condition throughout winter. If you need help with parking lot maintenance, repair, or line striping, give McDonald and Sons a call today.