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If you notice some issues with your asphalt driveway, you first should check with the company who installed the driveway to find out if you are still under warranty.  If you are not under warranty, you may be able to fix some of the driveway issues, like minor cracks, yourself. However, here is a word of caution – you should not attempt anything other than a minor repair by yourself. You definitely would be better off letting the trained professionals work on your driveway than making things worse.

That being said, you may be able to fix some things on your own. Again, if you have any fear or concern about doing so, you might want to talk to a paving company. Here are some DIY driveway repair tips:

Do the repair when it is warm and dry out: Generally speaking, if you live in a climate that has cold weather in the winter, you might want to wait until spring. That’s because the products used in the products work better in warmer weather. In addition, you need to check the weather forecast to not just make sure it is warm out, but that it is dry out.  Ironically, it is cold weather that contributes to needing driveway repair in the first place – that’s why potholes appear in winter, and why they are not often repaired until spring.

Clean first: You should also have a broom to sweep up the driveway first, before doing any repairs. It is important to make sure that the area is clean before applying any sealant. Also, if any roots are growing in the cracks or holes, be sure to pull the plants and weeds out first.

Have the right equipment: For example, you can fill small cracks with a caulking gun with asphalt repair material in it. For larger cracks or holes, you may want to use cold patch filler. There are a variety of products in the market available at hardware stores and home repair stores.

Tamp the repair product down:  You don’t want bumps on your driveway, so make sure you tamp the material down if you need to, to make sure it is even with the rest of the surface.

Don’t forget the sealer: You will need to put some sort of sealant product on the driveway after putting the repair product on. And make sure that after doing so, you stay off the driveway for whatever the instructions say, which could be 24 to 48 hours. You may also want to put the sealant product on the entire driveway again.

If the DYI doesn’t work, call the professionals: Asphalt repair companies can fix your driveway, as well as fix any errors you made. Don’t be afraid to contact them for help.

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Lisa Swan writes on a variety of asphalt paving sites such as Driveways Corporation.