How to Fix a Crumbling Driveway

If you have a driveway in your house that has been crumbling away for a while, it is time to give it a little renovation and fix the various potholes, depressions, and cracks that notify you of their presence every time you drive over them. Like most driveways, if yours is also an asphalt driveway, then we have the complete guide on how to fix a crumbling driveway for you.

However, unlike other DIY chores – this one is a little more technical and will require the right time, weather conditions, and material to be completed perfectly. If your driveway is in too bad a condition, we would suggest getting it redone altogether because that will be more efficient. However, you can easily get to fixing your driveway if there is minor damage here and there.

Things You’ll Need

Here are some essential items that you will need before you start fixing your driveway. Make sure to purchase these beforehand.

How to Fix a Crumbling Driveway

Cold pour pothole asphalt patch

Cold pour asphalt crack filler

Cold pour alligator asphalt patch

Pothole tamper

Asphalt squeegee

How to Fix a Crumbling Driveway in 8 Steps

Step 1: Take a good look at your driveway.

The very first step to repairing your driveway is to examine it carefully. This is to see whether you can move forward with the restoration yourself because blacktopping will not solve everything. If your driveway has deep depressions and cracks wider than 6mm, then you will need to hire a contractor for rebuilding the driveway. However, if there are small cracks, potholes, and depressions, then you can move ahead with the job.

Step 2: Clean the driveway before beginning the restoration.

Before repairing your driveway, make sure it is clean. You do not want to work with dirt and debris as this will make the fixing harder. Trim off any overgrown grass on the edges of your driveway and scrape off any grass or weeds growing in the cracks. You can use a leaf blower to remove dust, dirt, and small loose stones. Finally, scrub away any oil stains using a heavy degreasing detergent.

Step 3: Buy a cold pour pothole patching material.

There are different types of blacktop (asphalt) repair products available in the market. We recommend the asphalt pothole patching material to be perfect for topping potholes and depressions deeper than 5cm. Also, you will want to use a cold pour because a hot pour requires specialized machines.

Step 4: Pour on a layer of the patching material and tamp it down.

Directly pour from the bag on top of the hole, filling it 1.25 – 2.5cm deep throughout. For larger holes, you can spread the material using a rake or shovel. Do not worry if the patching material spills over into the surrounding surface. Once done topping, push the patching material down with a pothole tamper. You can also use a lawnmower or any other heavy object to do this. Repeat this process until the hole is level with the surrounding driveway.

Step 5: Seal the area.

If you want the repairing of your driveway to be more straightforward, we recommend applying an asphalt sealer over the blacktopped areas. However, only do this if you have the right weather conditions. This will include a temperature of 16°C (60°F), and no rain. If the sealer gets wet before it cures, the patching material will wash away too. Leave the sealer on for at least 4 hours.

Step 6: Use an asphalt crack filler to fill smaller cracks.

Fixing your driveway will also involve filling the smaller cracks and depressions that are less than 6mm wide. For this purpose, use an asphalt crack filler and make sure to go through the label instructions once. Shake the bottle, so the product is well-mixed.

We suggest you cut off the top of the nozzle to become thinner than the crack for accurate application. If there is no nozzle, use a caulk gun instead. Fill the product directly into the crack and apply a second coat (after the first has dried) if it seems that the filler has sunken below the driveway level.

Step 7: Use an alligator asphalt patch for bigger cracks.

If there is an ‘alligator scale’ or ‘spider web’ patterned crack on your driveway, you will need an alligator asphalt patch for repairing your driveway. It is also used for cracks wider than 6mm and depressions shallower than 5 cm. if the alligator cracks are severe, they may have entire chunks of missing asphalt. In this case, it will be better to remove these completely, and then refill the holes using the pothole method above.

Do not forget to check the label instructions. Some products need to be mixed with water before application. Since these cracks will be spread across the area of your driveway, use an asphalt squeegee to spread the material over the whole pattern after pouring it into the centre. The damage should be covered with 3-6mm of the material.

Step 8: Let Dry for 24 hours.

Finally, repairing your driveway has reached its final stage. You have to make sure to do nothing in this one. Drying after blacktopping is extremely important, and using the driveway before it has completely dried can ruin all your effort in the previous steps. Give your driveway at least 24 hours before walking or driving upon it.

Our Final Thoughts

Driveways easily become subject to wear and tear, mainly because of how frequently they are used. If yours has been crumbling away for a while now, it is best to take things into your control at the right time because getting it redone by a professional is not only more expensive but also time-consuming. With our comprehensive guide on how to fix a crumbling driveway, you can easily get the job done yourself.