The Difference Between Asphalt Paving & Sealcoating

If you are already familiar with asphalt terminology, you might be surprised to learn that this question is one that all asphalt contractors must answer frequently. Although the two products work together, they are actually two very different things.Think of sealcoating as an umbrella that you can use to shield yourself from the sun’s rays or a torrential rain. Using this analogy, your body would be what provides the strength to support the umbrella, much as asphalt paving supports the asphalt sealcoating. A more in-depth discussion of each product follows.

What is Sealcoating?

Sealcoating is an asphalt sealant that is applied on top of your pavement to protect it and enhance its appearance. Sealcoating:

• Should be applied to new pavement that has cured sufficiently, which is normally about three months.
• Is not a permanent product and will need to be reapplied periodically. Depending on the use to which the pavement is subjected, reapplications may be needed each year or every five years, but two to three years is most typical.
• Blocks the UV rays that can dry out the asphalt and make it “crumbly.”
• Should not be applied to damaged asphalt until repairs have been made.
• Is capable of smoothing out minor surface flaws, but it is not a substitute for crack filling.
• Can often double the life of the pavement when sealcoating is combined with proper repairs and maintenance.
•  The contractor then adds water and other ingredients to create a liquid for application.
• Can make asphalt pavement appear darker and more lustrous.
• Is one of the least expensive ways that you can prolong the life of your pavement.

What is Asphalt Paving?

Asphalt paving is essentially the pavement underneath your sealcoating. When installed correctly, asphalt pavement is flexible, strong and resilient. Paving may refer to new construction, the replacement of existing asphalt pavement or an overlay, which is an additional layer of asphalt applied over existing pavement. Asphalt paving:

• Requires a strong, stable base. Without this base, the asphalt cannot maintain its resiliency and will quickly develop cracks or potholes. For new paving, the base is typically compressed rock or gravel. For an overlay, the existing asphalt or concrete is often sufficient for a successful application. Other options may be available, depending on the climate, usage and soil.
• Requires contractors to bring in heavy equipment, such as rollers to compress the fresh asphalt.
• Can result in more disruption to traffic than sealcoating.
• Is more expensive than sealcoating.
• Can last for many years if properly maintained.

If you have questions about sealcoating, paving or any other asphalt-related service, contact All Pro Asphalt. We offer an extensive range of services, including parking lot striping, asphalt repairs, paving and sealcoating, to customers throughout the greater Kansas City area. Our crews are highly trained and experienced, and they are committed to providing quality results and superior customer service. You can use our online form to request a free quote, or you can call 816-249-6800.

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