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I just had my driveway asphalt coated. In general it looks pretty good, but there are 2 areas (about 10 sq ft each) where the (due to the location) the asphalt was laid by hand and not rolled on by a large machine - so the surface has some roughness and is not as flat as the rest of the driveway. (Aesthetically this is not a problem as one area is where trash cans will be situated, and the other is the creation of a side path through some bushes.)

Today it is raining and the first thing I noticed is that those manually laid areas are extremely porous - rain is running down to them and then just disappearing. I called my asphalt guy and he stated to me that "oh once the asphalt has cured then those areas will naturally seal up"

I am skeptical of the curing process closing up those porous areas, and my concern is that in the winter there is potential for cracking due to ice expansion.

  1. Will the porous areas seal themselves up?

  2. Are my concerns about cracking in those areas valid?

  3. If seal coating is advised, is doing this myself a smart or dumb thing to do?

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Asphalt doesn't crack due to porosity. It cracks when it expands and contracts due to heat cycles, and as it dries out from age. Poor substrates exacerbate this.

Once they are cracked freezing water has much more of an effect. Then it's able to push with enough force to cause damage.

Sealers mostly preserve the surface appearance. They don't do much at all to increase longevity.

The point is, unless you want to keep the surface visually uniform, I wouldn't worry 'bout it. I'm sure others would.

  • But doesn't the porosity let in the water to allow ice to form and expand the asphalt? – Peter M Apr 5 at 21:00
  • And BTW did my asphalt guy tell the truth? – Peter M Apr 5 at 21:00
  • There'll be water in your asphalt whether or not you seal the top. The top's not the only way water can get in. "Truth" is fuzzy here. All you'll get on this question is opinion. There's mine. – isherwood Apr 6 at 2:40
  • Yet your fuzzy truth contradicts that the asphalt will seal up by itself :D But thanks for your answer – Peter M Apr 6 at 12:31

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