Summer time opens up a whole new world of activities for your family. Sun, hot weather, and time off of school leaves plenty of free time to get creative outside! But can some of our favorite summer activities cause harm to our paved surfaces? Lets break down a few and discuss why some may be harmful and what to do instead!

Chalk is typically made from plaster or talc and can be washed away quickly with some water. Does it cause damage? Absolutely not. However, be careful using it on freshly poured uncured concrete and asphalt. Freshly paved surfaces are more likely to stain with the added colorants and be harder to clean. 

The verdict? Potentially damaging, but it is very unlikely with a properly cured surface!

Fireworks can be done safely and without harm to asphalt and concrete, but it’s best to leave that up to the professionals. Beyond the obvious which is starting a fire, fireworks can leave behind damage on your paved surfaces. When one explodes, it leaks a chemical that can react with concrete and cause permanent staining. If the impact is too much for your pavement it can also cause cracks and holes. 

The verdict? It can be safe when left to professionals, but don’t be surprised if permanent damage is left behind. 

Pools are an exciting part of summer, and a lot of families (dad’s, we’re looking at you) want to protect their grass and may choose to put a pool up on a patio or driveway instead. Depending on the integrity of your pavement, you run the risk of cracks and other damages due to the weight of the water. A gallon of water is (on average) 8.8 lbs. So even a small 16’ x 48” pool has the potential to weigh over 45,000 pounds. The average mid-size sedan weighs 3,351 lbs. which means a pool is the equivalent of over 13 vehicles in your driveway. 

The verdict? Grass is a lot cheaper to fix than asphalt or concrete. We recommend taking precautions to protect your grass and finding a good spot in your yard for your pool!

Car work typically picks up more in summer time. Pay close attention to spills and leaks to prevent eccelorated deterioration of your paved surfaces. Grease and oil act as surfactants to the tar that holds the asphalt together making it weak and susceptible to cracks. 

The verdict? Car work is perfectly fine as long as you clean up any fluids promptly. 

Car washes are a popular afternoon activity when the weather is nice! Give your kids a bucket of soapy water and some sponges and let them have fun! But is soap harmful to asphalt? Nope! Mild dish detergent or soap wont harm your asphalt at all. 

The verdict? Washing your car in your driveway will actually help clean your asphalt! 

Sun rays can dry out asphalt and reduce the flexibility. This can cause cracks and potholes to form. Obviously it’s impossible to completely shield your pavement from the sun, but there are steps to prevent damage. The best way to prevent sun damage is to keep up with sealcoating! We recommend every 2-5 years!

The verdict? Sun is absolutely harmful, but proper care with reduce the effects!

Now that summer is finally here, get outside and enjoy the sunshine! Just remember to take care of your driveway in the process! Armored Asphalt is here to help with everything you need to keep your pavement looking fresh and last for many years to come! If you need asphalt repairs, maintenance, or installation in SE Wisconsin or Northern Illinois, call the professionals at Armored Asphalt today to discuss your project and to get a free estimate!