Almost every type of driveway needs a little attention come spring time. Cold temperatures, frost, and the aggravation of snow plows and shovels have probably taken their toll on your driveway over the winter. A little driveway maintenance can bring it back to its former glory, however, and make for a way smoother ride.
Gravel or Dirt Driveways
If you have a gravel or dirt driveway, you probably have issues such as displaced gravel, potholes, and ruts. These are not only unattractive, but can make for a very uncomfortable drive and can even damage your vehicle.
- Displaced gravel. Often plowing snow in the winter will cause gravel to migrate off the driveway. The easiest way to get it back where it belongs is to sweep or rake it back into place. If you are worried about plants and grass along the sides of your driveway, rake the gravel while the ground is still frozen, which will minimize damage to your lawn and plantings.
- Ruts and potholes. One option for getting rid of potholes and ruts is filling them in by hand. This is painstaking and can be expensive to purchase new gravel year after year. An easier and more effective solution is to regrade the driveway, loosening packed areas and redistributing gravel for a smoother, more even surface. The DR Power Grader is an ideal tool for this. Towed behind your ATV or lawn tractor, its carbide-tipped scarifying teeth loosen packed material and redistribute it to potholes, ruts, and washouts. You can even make precise adjustments to how deep the teeth penetrate with the remote controlled power actuator. The result is a smooth, level surface that makes for a comfortable drive. See what owners think about the DR Power Grader:
If you have a paved drive, check for heaves and cracks. If you find any significant cracks — especially those that weren’t there in the fall — it could be an indication of poor drainage. This, unfortunately, is not a quick fix and may mean that the whole driveway should be replaced. Smaller cracks, though, can be fixed yourself and usually do not indicate poor construction. It is best to fix them as soon as possible, before too much moisture is allowed to seep in. Clean the cracks out as well as possible, including taking out any big chunks of asphalt that are no longer attached and getting rid of all dust and dirt. If any gas, oil, or other substances have dripped into the crack, use a commercial cleanser to clean them out. Fill them to within 1/4″ of the surface with either sand or closed-cell plastic backer rod. Then, fill the top-most part of the crack with a patching compound. Follow package instructions for best results.
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