STOP! You know it’s there. You see it every day when you come into work. You even walk around the crater to get to your front door. It’s your parking lot, and you’ve been ignoring it every day hoping it will go away. I call it “Asphalt Denial”.
You don’t want to know what needs to be done because you know it will
cost a lot of money! You might have already had an estimate that put
you in cardiac arrest and you buried in the bottom of the “To Do” pile
that has been sitting there for 5 years. You might even have been
beaten over the head with the “Fix this now or Else Stick” threatening
that your parking lot will implode and cause the end of the world. You
know you need to do parking lot maintenance, but can’t figure out how to
get started and finish it without putting you into financial ruin.
You’re not alone. Many people face this issue every day. I have some
suggestions that can get you to the “Asphalt Promised Land”.
First, get your estimates. Request that the estimates are broken
down into sections (asphalt repairs, sealcoating, crack filling, and
striping) with costs for each section. This way you can work on a
section at a time.
Second, do your asphalt repairs first. Potholes, left alone, can do
the most damage to an asphalt parking lot in the shortest amount of
time. Typically this is the highest cost in an estimate. If your
budget is tight, you can breakdown the repairs over several years. Set a
budget figure you want to spend, and focus on any repairs in high
traffic areas first such as drive lanes or walking areas then move out
to low traffic areas like parking stalls. Repair your potholes, don’t
patch. If you repair the holes, the repairs will last 15-20 years.
Third, get your crack filling and sealing done. This step may happen
several years down the road, but it will preserve what you have and
what you have been doing the past few years in repairs. Sealcoating is
typically a few cents per square foot but makes a difference in the
longevity of a parking lot. Sealcoating and striping will spruce up the
look of the parking lot as well.
Finally, be patient. This might take several years depending on your
cash availability, but will pay off in the long run in preserving your
parking lot. Remember, doing a little of something is far better than
doing nothing. Stick with the plan; keep moving forward even just a
little bit. Your lot will look like new very soon.