The short answer to this question is yes; snowplows can damage driveways. However, there are many factors that influence this scenario. It’s also possible to plow a driveway for years without damages. The trick is to employ the best methods with experience by your side. Learn all about driveways and how a proper plowing job can actually preserve its lifespan.
Snowplows damage driveways when the operator isn’t fully trained. Anyone can purchase a plow and install it on their vehicle. Moving it with care across the surface takes practice. Avoid a driveway repair issue by hiring professionals, such as referrals from paving contractors.
Being Selective About the Edge
There are countless simple and complex ways to clear snow from a roadway, reports the Asphalt Institute Magazine. The most basic strategy continues to use the snow plow. To avoid asphalt damage, be picky about the plow’s edge. Don’t use bare metal.
Polyurethane or rubber edges are still effective for snow removal, and they won’t damage the ground. Opting for this plowing edge will protect every part of your property.
Marking the Curbs
You may take a lot of precautions to protect the flat asphalt, but the driveway’s edges are also vulnerable. Curbs formed from asphalt can be significantly damaged when snow piles up.
Rather than replacing the driveway after a rogue plowing incident, consider marking the curbs. Add small flags or other indicators to the driveway’s edges. Any plow operator will see the edges and steer clear of them.
Protecting the Surface With Sealants
A clever way to prepare for the winter season while the plow is in storage is by sealing the driveway. Mild temperatures are perfect times to hire the professionals for a sealant job. This fine film covers and protects the driveway from extreme temperatures and physical stress, including plowing operations with half or one ton trucks.
When a plow does move over the surface, any scraping action is against the sealant and not the asphalt.
Setting the Blade High
Avoid damage altogether by plowing high. The plow doesn’t have to scrape every snowflake from the ground. By setting the plow at about a half-inch above the asphalt, the blade can still move most of the snow volume away without coming into contact with the ground. A half-inch of snow left on the asphalt is safe enough to drive or walk on.
If your driveway has any high or low spots, set the blade to a height that takes these anomalies into consideration. The entire surface will be protected in the end.
Turning to Snow Blowers
For extra care around your asphalt paving, try a snowblower. A light coating of snow may not require an entire plowing job. Before the snow hardens, blow the snow away from the driveway, states JR Paving & Construction Company. Scraping away at the surface isn’t necessary so that the asphalt remains strong through the winter.
Knowing About Everyday Decline
Remember that every effort to preserve your driveway can only go so far. East Coat Pavement Services points out that expansion-and-contraction processes will eventually wear down any asphalt pavement.
As a snow plow moves across the surface, the moisture is largely removed from the area. Within tiny cracks, however, are ice particles that flex with the changing temperatures. Protect the driveway by starting in the spring with asphalt fillers. Moisture cannot reach the cracks in the winter when they’re filled early on.
Winters will always offer challenges to your property. Take them on with knowledge and strategies by your side.