Asphalt Maintenance
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A new asphalt driveway or parking area should not allow traffic or parked vehicles for 3 days, foot traffic is allowed immediately after completion!

Coal Tar Emulsion Sealers
Never seal new asphalt until it has cured for 90 days ( 3 Months).
Sealing a new driveway will help prevent oil stains and oil damage!  Sealers also help protect driveways from gasoline and transmission fluid spills!

Sealing your asphalt driveway or parking area every 2-4 years thereafter is an important part of maintaining elasticity in all bituminous products.  It is also the best time to take care of any cracks or holes that need to be filled and prevent water from getting into your gravel base / foundation.

Elements such as the sun and rain will wear and dry asphalt.  Asphalt will dry and become brittle with age.  Even if asphalt is not exposed to any outdoor elements it would still lighten and dry with time!

If water goes all the way through the asphalt, it will begin washing away the gravel base foundation weakening structural support.

Sealing your driveway with Coal Tar Emulsion is a great tribute to the longevity of asphalt. Driveway maintenance and preventative care will go a long way it protecting your investment!

Too much Coal Tar Emulsion can damage your driveway. Never seal your driveway every year or apply more than one coat unless needed!  Seal your asphalt when the old sealer is worn off or shows signs of wearing.

Never seal coat your driveway too often for this will cause a build-up of sealer that will split and peel causing a very unpleasant look, always let the sealer wear and fade before applying more.

Coal Tar Emulsion Sealers can be purchased at any major hardware store or home improvement outlet and should be applied to new asphalt driveways to prevent oil stains or oil damage after 90 days.

Sealing your driveway is like putting a wax coating on your car or furniture.  It will protect the surface from the elements, add elasticity, restore the color, protect against oil spots and staining, and it even makes your driveway smoother by filling all the pores and cracks.

Seal coating every 2-4 years will help defend against the elements, and filling all holes and cracks before sealing will make your asphalt driveway look fully restored!

Before & After Sealcoating Video

Asphalt becomes brittle with age, as it dries out, it turns white then becomes vulnerable to cracking.  If you bend metal back and forth what happens?  Eventually the metal will crack and break.  Frost will lift your driveway every winter (unless you live in a non frost climate), and will re-settle in the spring after the ground thaws.

Coal Tar Emulsion sealers will add elasticity to asphalt, help keep it stay soft and allow the asphalt to flex with the winters frost and spring thaws.  Coal Tar is the only ingredient in any sealer that bonds through a chemical reaction with the asphalt.  Sand has no benefit other than for traction.

Sealers with lots of sand cost more and contain less Coal Tar Emulsion.  Sand is only needed to provide traction on a steep incline. Most sealers today are rubberized to help with the traction issue so sand is rarely needed.

Rain is another significant wearing element that your driveway has to tolerate. The Grand Canyon was created by water!  Even the sun will act as a catalyst and speed up the drying process!

These are a few of the element that can cause harm to your driveway or parking lot, and eventually surface cracks will appear.

  • Seal coating your asphalt will help ward off the elements and extend the beauty and longevity of your asphalt driveway!
  • A smoother driveway is easier to keep clean!
  • Seal your driveway when it is new , to keep it looking new!
  • Fill all cracks and holes to prevent water from getting into the foundation or base to prolong decay!
  •  "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure..."

Warning about Coal Tar Emulsion
Coal Tar product are know to track on certain types of flooring.  Congolium flooring is one material which can cause Coal Tar sealers to stick to your shoes and track into your home. It can become a nuisance for the homeowners that have synthetic flooring.

Gilsonite sealers are one alternative to Coal Tar sealers. It can be installed as long as Coal Tar has never been applied.  Unlike Coal Tar which dries flat black, Gilsonite has a shine, but the shine will only last for a few months and Gilsonite products are more expensive.


But you won't be able to use ordinary driveway sealer on these.  There are about a dozen colors available in acrylic.  However they do need to have a clear coat applied over them.  Sometimes a base or prep coat needs to be applied first.  Crack fillers also have to be purchased to match.  These systems are very expensive, therefore, I like to keep them on the tennis and basketball playing courts, where there is no worrying about transmission or oil spills!


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Thanks for all of the helpful information on your Driveway Tips site.  This is exactly what I need to give me some ideas about what to do with my ugly driveway. Keep up the good work!

- Scott, Arlington, VA

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