"Best Management Practices" for Sealcoating Application

Sealcoating application "best management practices"

Pavement industry professionals understand that following best practices is important for safety, productivity, quality and profitability. These guidelines also protect contractors and establish credibility with end-users and the general public. Professionals should pay attention to industry standards and update their procedures as best practices evolve.

Invest in Safety

Provide employees with proper tools before sending them onto the job. Thorough training and access to resources, like the Safety Data Sheet, help instill knowledge and establish expectations. Workers should be properly outfitted as well. The Pavement Coatings Technology Council (PCTC) recommends a hat, face shield and gloves to protect exposed skin in all environments.  

Consider the Conditions  

Weather patterns significantly affect the timing and execution of sealcoating. Each manufacturer has specific temperature guidelines that must be followed. Commonly, application should only take place when temperatures are 50 degrees Fahrenheit and rising.  Plan around a 24-hour dry period to ensure the material has time to properly cure as well.

The underlying pavement condition must be assessed, too. First, properly remove loose debris, including dirt, aggregate and leaves. Oil and grease spots should be swept, scrubbed, chemically removed and flushed with water until the surface is ready for treatment. If necessary, apply an oil spot primer. Inspect for cracks, repair defects and treat oxidized or eroded pavement before sealcoating the asphalt.

Apply with Caution

Follow manufacturer recommendations to provide a safe environment for workers and high-quality project for the end user. Choose the application method (brush, squeegee or spray) based on a number of factors including: asphalt condition, area size, specifications and manufacturer recommendations. Allow for proper drying time prior to applying a second coat of material. Temperature, sunlight, wind, humidity and dew point affect how quickly the material dries and should be closely monitored. A minimum of four hours is commonly required between coats.

Following best management practices is vital to a high-quality job that is repeatable and safe for all involved. A dependable and thorough contractor attracts quality employees, new customers and improves the reputation of the pavement maintenance industry as a whole.