Fall Tip: How to Prep for The Perfect Driveway Clean and Seal
Updated: Oct 6, 2021
How to Manage a Driveway Cleaning and Sealing
We are very grateful to help you freshen up your home this Fall. From Gutter Cleaning, to Window Cleaning, and Pressure Washing - Morris Family Windows hopes to be your one stop shop for exterior home cleaning in Grosse Pointe, Michigan.
Today, we urge you to take a good hard look at your driveway.
Because... have you looked at it lately? So often our driveways and walkways go overlooked so here are two action items to begin:
Take note of the last time you A) cleaned your driveway and B) had your driveway (and walkway) sealed. If the answer is one year or more, than this post is for you.
In this post we will go over what to look for in your driveway and how to best prepare for a driveway to be cleaned and sealed.
What is Driveway Sealing?
Driveway sealing is the process of putting a sealant on your driveway to prevent further and future deterioration such as cracking, crumbling, and fading. In order to do a proper driveway sealing job, the driveway needs to be cleaned first.
It is recommended to clean your driveway (pressure wash) at least once per year. It you have heavy traffic areas, that number may increase. It is also recommended to seal your driveway once every three years. This is to ensure all cracks are maintained and never given the chance to flourish. It really depends on the usage of your driveway and the weather condition over the years. We take a preventative approach at Morris Family Window and Gutter Cleaning. We say "if you see hairline cracks - it's time to seal".
If you aren’t sure if you need to have your driveway sealed, contact us for an assessment.
In regards to cleaning your driveway, we recommend always keeping an eye out for cracks, stains, and weeds. A thorough cleaning (pressure wash/ pulling weeds/ etc) can be done each year and we want to inspect and give a fresh pressure wash right before you reseal your driveway. Otherwise, there is mildew and dirt that will get stuck in the sealant.
Preparing for a Driveway Sealing
The first way to prep for a driveway sealing in Grosse Pointe is to clean it! Within the category of “cleaning” there are three steps.
Remove the Weeds
The absolute number one thing you need to do to prep for a driveway sealing is to remove the weeds in and around the driveway itself.
The edges are a big hot spot for unwanted plants, but also, in any cracks you my see in the driveway. Get a good weed killing product (or use boiling hot water) and be sure to physically remove and uproot all of those annoying weeds.
The good news is, once sealed, those weeds are less likely to come back. The seeds cannot embed past the sealant we use and will protect your driveway for one to three years.
Once you are done removing the weeds, now it’s time to start removing any and all stains from the driveway. This preparation for a driveway sealing makes sure that there are no extra substances that could prevent the sealant from working properly and you don't "seal in the mess" so to speak.
Cleaning up after fresh oil spills are the best, but if you find yourself forgetting at the time, there are still products you can use to make older stains, like oil, go away.
Try using powdered spill absorbers or products like:
A Paint Stripper or Solvent
A Concrete Cleaner
Note, We always perform a thorough pressure wash service with our driveway seal service. This takes care of minor stains and grime that may be leftover.
Scrub your Driveway
If the other products aren’t working well enough to your liking, you can also try pressure washing your driveway in Grosse Pointe. Pressure washing or washing in general is usually best when the spill is fresh.
However, you can also try using a driveway cleaner with some water and scrubbing.
Once you have used any of these techniques, be sure to apply an oil spot primer, which helps the driveway sealer bind better to the remaining oil stained regions that are too ingrained to remove.
Again, we will always give a thorough pressure washing to any jobs done in Grosse Pointe as part of our "prep" for driveway sealing.
Fix the Cracks
Once the weeds and the stains are handled, go back over your driveway and seal the hairline cracks. Fixing the cracks ahead of time enables the process of sealing the driveway to be quicker. Driveway sealant does not fix cracks, it just goes over them so the cracks with still be there. That is why fixing the cracks are important pre-driveway sealing.
We do this in our prep process for all driveway sealing jobs. If you are unsure if driveway sealing is right for you, please shoot me a text at 313-752-1300 with a picture of the concerning area.
Measure your Driveway
The very last step before actually doing the driveway sealing is to measure your driveway in Grosse Pointe so you know exactly how much driveway sealant to purchase! You don’t want too little of course; you could be stuck going back to the store while half of your project is drying... But also, you don’t want too much. Sealant does not store as well as you would think, and waiting for the next go round probably would not be effective.
I have seen a lot of people tempted to over-do the sealant simply because they have it on hand. If you do put too much on, the driveway will not dry properly and could come out quite uneven.
Driveway Sealing in Grosse Pointe
The final step! The best method to seal your driveway properly is to work in small areas to make sure the sealant doesn’t dry out before you get to it. Now this is the trick - Spread the liquid over as thin as possible.
We use a sealant that is dry within 24 hours - HOWEVER I always advise customers to wait 48 hours to ensure there are no mishaps. During this time you do not want to walk, bike, or drive over the sealed area.
Keep in Mind: Book a Few Days
These steps might seem easy and quick, but in fact it could take several days. Be aware of the weather in the following days. You don’t want to plan a crack sealing day on a day that it rains. We see this a lot in Michigan; it can sometimes be day by day basis whether or not to begin driveway prep.
With our summer weather bringing in rain and storms, definitely keep the weather forecast in mind! You want at least 24 hours of clear, warm, but not scorching weather for the perfect driveway seal.
Morris Family Windows at Your Service
If you'd like to enjoy your summer and leave the work to the pros- we are on duty!
Contact our team today to schedule a time for us to clean, prep, and seal your driveway via our online quote form or by texting us at: 313-752-1300. We will leave you with an updated driveway and extra time to do the things you enjoy!