Deciding to repave a parking lot or have a new driveway installed is a serious commitment, both financially and emotionally. It’s totally normal to have questions about the process so you can feel good about the paving contractor you’ve chosen to do the job.

Below are some of the most frequently asked questions Shembarger Asphalt Sealing has encountered during their 25 years in business.

Pavement Sealer Questions

Why should I have my pavement seal coated?

Besides making your pavement look brand new again, pavement sealer protects asphalt pavements from the destructive elements of weather, gas, oil, antifreeze, and many other chemicals that could damage the paved surface.


My pavement has some depressions that hold water; will sealer fix this?

No; pavement sealer will not fill depressions or holes in the asphalt pavement. These types of repairs should be performed in advance using hot asphalt pavement.


How often should pavement be seal coated?

Asphalt pavements should be seal coated every one to three years. The amount of traffic is the deciding factor. Surfaces that receive light traffic like home driveways require recoating less frequently then parking lots receiving moderate to heavy traffic.


Will pavement sealer make the pavement slippery?

No; pavement sealer will not make the surface slippery. We use a sand-slurry mix of pavement sealer. Silica sand is mixed in with our pavement sealer at a rate of three pounds of sand per gallon of pavement sealer, resulting in a non-slip surface. Not all contractors use this type of mix, so be sure to ask.


Are all brands of pavement sealer the same?

All brands of pavement sealer are definitely not equal! We have used several local brands of pavement sealer. Some were adequate; some were not. In 1995 we purchased our own bulk storage tank so that we could obtain pavement sealer from anywhere in the country without being restricted to the local brands that many other contractors are using today. Today we find Gem Seal pavement sealer to be far superior to anything that we had used previously.


How should pavement sealer be applied?

Pavement sealer can be applied either by hand, spraying or squeegee. We usually apply the pavement sealer by hand (using a nylon brush applicator) around the edges and spray the middle.


Can pavement sealer be applied to concrete?

No; pavement sealer will not permanently adhere to concrete or cement surfaces.

How many coatings of pavement sealer should be applied?

One coating of pavement sealer is more than sufficient for the average home driveway. Two coatings of pavement sealer are recommended on most parking lots receiving moderate or heavy traffic.


How soon can new pavement be seal coated?

Newly paved asphalt surfaces should not be seal coated until they have had sufficient time to cure. Curing allows the excess oils that are always present in new asphalt pavements to diminish through a process called oxidation. This process can take as little as 30 days or as much as 90 days depending on the percentage of oil present in the new pavement. We usually recommend that a new asphalt pavement be allowed to go through one winter season before seal coating. This ensures that the surface will be properly cured when pavement sealer is applied.

Crack Repair Questions

There are some small holes in my pavement. What can be done?

We can repair these holes with hot asphalt pavement. Small pothole repairs in home driveways can usually be accomplished at a minimal cost. More extensive asphalt repairs may require paving.


Can pavement sealer fill cracks in the pavement?

No; pavement sealer will not fill cracks in the pavement. Crack repairs must be performed before the sealcoating is applied.


What is hot pour crack filler?

Hot pour crack filler is a flexible, rubber-like product that is used to repair cracks in asphalt pavements. It starts out as a solid, rubber block or cube which is melted down in a special kettle. Once melted, the crack filler is applied over cracks in the asphalt pavement as a flat strip.


What is the difference between hot pour and cold pour crack fillers?

Hot pour crack filler is applied hot. It then cools to a pliable, rubber like consistency allowing it to expand and contract with the crack. Cold pour crack filler can be a water or asphalt based product that is applied to cracks in liquid form and then dries to a solid. Cold pour crack fillers will not perform as well as hot pour crack fillers due to their lack of flexibility when dried.


Why isn’t the hot pour crack filler completely hardened?

After it has been applied and allowed to cool, hot pour crack filler is supposed to remain flexible. If you press it with your finger it will flex. If you park on it with your car tires, it will temporarily retain the tread pattern. This is normal for this type of material.


How soon can pavement sealer be applied to hot pour crack filler?

Pavement sealer can be applied to hot pour crack filler almost immediately! Hot pour crack filler usually cools enough to apply sealcoating within 5 minutes of being applied to the ground.


Some of the hot pour crack filler pulled up. What should I do?

Hot pour crack filler can sometimes pull up as a result of parking directly on it with the hot tires of a car that has just come to rest after prolonged driving at highway speeds. The hot tires can re-heat the crack filler, which then re-cools, adhering to the tire. When the vehicle is later moved, a small portion of the hot pour crack filler pulls up and away with the tire. Although this is a rare occurrence, there is not much that can be done to prevent it except to attempt not to park directly on the hot pour crack filler while the tires of your vehicle are still hot.

Line Striping Questions

I would like the same exact striping layout repainted after sealcoating. Is this possible?

Yes; we can replace your existing line striping layout exactly where it was before sealcoating.


Can I change to a different striping layout?

Yes, we can change your line striping layout if you wish. A word of caution: the old layout will most likely still be visible as a dark, shadow-like outline under the sealcoating.


Which paint colors are available?

Standard paint colors are traffic yellow and traffic white. We usually replace the same color lines that were originally present, but you may change from white to yellow, or vice versa at no extra charge.


Is there a specific type of paint that should be applied to pavement sealer?

The only type of paint that should be applied over newly sealcoated surfaces is water based or waterborne traffic paints. These types of paints can be applied to fresh pavement sealer without the usual discoloration associated with oil and chlorinated rubber based traffic paints.

Business Owner Questions

What are the best weather conditions for applying pavement sealer?

Pavement sealer should only be applied when the surface temperature is 50 degrees and rising. Water should be kept from entering onto the newly sealcoated surface until it has had time to completely dry; therefore obtaining an accurate weather forecast is essential.


What happens if the weather forecast is incorrect?

We take full responsibility for obtaining an accurate weather forecast. If the forecast is unfavorable, we will call you to re-schedule for another day. Furthermore, if the forecast turns out to be incorrect and your coating is damaged by rainfall before it has had time to completely dry, we will repair any damaged areas or recoat the entire area at NO EXTRA CHARGE.


Will I have to close my business parking lot while the work is being performed?

There are many different ways to plan work on a business parking area. Much depends on the size of the area and the number of access points available to enter the building. We will consult with you and develop a plan that meets your satisfaction.


Can my parking lot be sealcoated in separate sections?

The larger the work area, the more likely it is that we could perform the work in separate sections.


Can work be scheduled on a Saturday, Sunday or holiday?

Yes; we do schedule work on weekends and holidays. Minimal disruption of your business operations is a major priority. We realize that weekends and holidays may be the only times when you can close your parking area in order to give us access.


How soon can I re-open my parking lot to traffic?

We can usually have your parking lot re-opened to traffic the day after work is completed, weather permitting. Foot traffic can usually be permitted within a few hours of application of pavement sealer, depending on the drying conditions that exist on the day that work is performed.


Will you provide barricades for my parking lot?

Yes; we will provide traffic cones and barricade tape to ensure that the work area is properly blocked off.


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Shembarger Asphalt Sealing is a locally owned and operated asphalt and crack sealing company. We serve the South Bend, Mishawaka, Benton Harbor Michigan, and the surrounding areas. We will provide you with a top-quality job at a reasonable price. Contact us today for more information!

Shembarger Asphalt Sealing

6951 Deans Hill Rd
Berrien Center, MI 49102

269-471-4944 Michigan
574-233-8613 South Bend 
888-767-3947 Toll Free

Hours:  9am-5pm  

After hours appointments are available

Open March 20 – October 19

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