The Ultimate Guide to Restriping a Parking Lot (Times & Costs)

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The condition of your parking lot is going to determine whether customers want to check out your business.

The condition of a parking lot is essential for so many reasons. Visual reasons, safety reasons, and legal reasons are just a few.

If you’re ready to learn about re-striping a parking lot, keep reading!

4 Reasons You Need to Restripe a Parking Lot

There are so many reasons you should stay up to date on your parking lot striping.

Here are four of the most notable reasons to ensure your parking lot stays looking great all year-round:

parking lot restriping looks

1. Aesthetic Reasons

A parking lot is what will form the impression you have of a building.

If the parking lot is disorganized and beat up, why would customers feel confident about the condition of the building? When customers offer their business somewhere, they want to feel like the environment is clean and safe.

This is why it’s so important to have an appealing parking lot. If customers are turned off by your parking lot, they may take their business elsewhere. In this case, it doesn’t matter how nice your store, restaurant, or other building is on the inside.

First impressions really do make all the difference when it comes to attracting customers.

parking lot safety

2. Safety

Keeping your parking lot striped isn’t just important for visual reasons.

The stripes and symbols painted into a parking lot play a huge role in the safety of the parking lot. For example, arrows direct the flow of traffic. These arrows reduce the chance of a head-on collision as they keep traffic organized in a busy parking lot.

Also, parking lot lines keep parking organized and simple. If your customers can’t see the parking lines, they’ll just park wherever they choose. This lack of organization will reduce the number of cars that are able to fit in your parking lot. 

If you have a business that often has a full parking lot, this can be harmful to your revenue.

Handicap spaces also make it possible for customers to park safely. If nobody knows that a parking spot is a designated handicapped spot, they’ll park in the closest space. This leaves the people who need these spots with a further walk.

parking lot ada requirements in restriping 1

3. Complying with ADA Regulations

On the topic of handicap spots, ADA regulations require these.

Having an ADA-compliant property is essential for inclusivity, but for legal reasons as well. If a handicapped person is injured on your property and your space isn’t ADA compliant, you’ll be legally responsible for that.

Having spots towards the front of the parking lot for handicapped vehicles is an important part of ADA regulation. ADA regulation also requires having handicapped stalls as well as wheelchair accessible designs in the building.

Legal reasons aside, having a handicap-friendly property is essential for business. If a handicapped individual pulls into your parking lot and can’t find a designated handicapped spot upfront, they may leave. 

Having a property that isn’t accessible to all people is going to turn away customers, able-bodied and handicapped alike.

save money on restriping a parking lot

4. Saving Money

If an accident happens in your parking lot because it wasn’t properly striped, you may be responsible. 

Over 50,000 accidents happen in parking lots each year, with around 500 resulting in death. Many of these are a result of falls due to ice in parking lots. However, many of these accidents are a result of poor parking lot traffic.

With parking lot accidents happening so frequently, you truly can’t afford to be complacent.

If a driver is injured on your property because there were no necessary stop signs, arrows directing traffic, or parking lines, you can be sued for negligence. Losing this lawsuit will result in you paying medical bills as well as lost time at work for the injured driver.

A premises liability lawsuit can result in you paying between $100,000-1,000,000

This amount is only for one person as well. So, if you have multiple people injured in your parking lot, you could face charges that put you out of business.

It should come as no surprise that maintaining a striped parking lot is much less expensive than paying these legal fees. We will dive more into the cost of re-striping a parking lot later.

3 Reasons Why Your Asphalt Stripes May Deteriorate

Over time asphalt stripes will naturally deteriorate.

Here are some factors that will impact how quickly paint stripes deteriorate:

parking lot weather

1. Harsh Weather Conditions

For all outdoor surfaces, harsh weather creates more maintenance work.

For roads and parking lots, construction and upkeep will have to be done more often if it snows. This principle applies to re-striping your parking lot as well.

As snowplows scrape along your parking lot, your lines will be damaged in the process.

full parking lot

2. Parking Lot Traffic & Heavy Usage

Parking lot lines are pretty resistant to the average wear and tear of a parking lot.

How much traffic you have in your parking lot is going to have a huge impact on how quickly the parking lot lines wear down.

If you run a business that requires appointments and doesn’t have hundreds of cars driving through it each day, your lines will last longer. For example, the lines in a dental office’s parking lot won’t need to be re-striped as often as a large retailer.

parking lot paint quality

3. Quality of Paint

The quality of the paint that’s used for your lines will also impact when the stripes deteriorate.

There are a few different options that you can choose from as you re-stripe your parking lot. The most common are water-based acrylics. This type of paint is a great option because it offers high visibility at night as well as durability.

Water-based acrylics are better for the environment than most other alternatives as well. When it comes to finding a balance between price and efficiency, water-based acrylics often win.

Not only are water-based acrylics used in parking lots, but they’re commonly used on roads as well. Other paint options for striping include:

Solvent-Based Chlorinated Rubber

When compared to water-based paint, chlorinated rubber can withstand a variety of temperatures a little better.

Chlorinated rubber is also quite a bit more expensive than water-based paint. It dries quicker, so many people prefer to use this paint on highways in a time crunch. In colder environments, some find it to be more efficient. 

reflective paint in parking lots

Reflective Paints

Reflective paints are a great option for hospitals and airports.

When your car’s headlights hit the paint, beads light up, making the lines much easier to see. When applying the paint, the beads need to be applied to the paint before it dries.

When people are tired, not feeling well, or are in a hurry, reflective paints prove to be beneficial. Also, when you have parking lots that fill up quickly, having a clear line is helpful for fitting as many cars in the parking lot as possible.

Thermal Plastic Paints

This is the paint that looks thick and has a bit of height to it.

It’s one of the most expensive of the paint options, yet it’s durable. Thermal plastic paint alone can handle more impact, however, a seal coating can’t be applied to it.

Oil-Based Paints

This type of paint is the most durable, however, it has been banned in many parts of the country.

The ban comes from the impact that oil-based paints have on the environment.

When’s The Right Time to Restriping Your Parking Lot?

For safety and business reasons, a properly-striped parking lot is crucial.

Here is how you’ll know when it’s time to re-stripe your parking lot:

General Timeline

It’s best to re-stripe your parking lot annually or every two years.

The time frame is so wide because a variety of factors impact when you should re-stripe your parking lot. Gauging the condition of your parking lot and acting is a huge part of determining when it should be re-striped.

Some parking lots take way more of a beating than others, so they may need to be re-striped more often.


If you live in a harsh climate that gets a lot of snow, you’ll need to lean more towards the annual timeframe.

Aside from the damage snowplows cause, the salt that’s used to clear ice will also damage your parking lot lines. Salt is abrasive and harsh, so once the snow and ice melt you’ll notice spotty and faint lines are left behind.

Winter naturally damages roads and parking lots because water seeps into the pavement and expands as the water freezes. This causes the ground to crack or potholes to form. As a result, lines may be distorted or deteriorated.

When you live in a harsh climate it’s wise to re-stripe your parking lot each year after winter. This is when they’ll be in the worst shape. It’s not recommended to re-stripe them before winter, as your work will just be undone. 

When you re-stripe your parking lot after winter, the milder elements of the spring, summer, and fall should keep your lines fresh for winter. You’ll want lines to be in good condition come winter because visibility is naturally worse.

Selling Property

If you’re planning on selling your property, you’ll want to give the property a bit of a facelift.

You’ll want to pull weeds, clean up any debris in the form of trash or leaves, and re-stripe your parking lot. First impressions are essential for attracting customers, but they’re even more important for attracting a potential buyer.

Having clean, fresh lines in your parking lot will make your potential buyer feel more confident in buying the property. Plus, it will open their mind as they tour the building!

What to Remember When Re-Striping a Parking Lot

There’s a lot that goes into re-striping a parking lot.

If you’re going to re-stripe your parking lot, keep these things in mind:

1. Reflective Lines

If you have a property that has hundreds of patrons each day, you may want to invest in reflective paint.

Additionally, if patrons are often in a compromised state or hurrying when arriving at your building, reflective lines can help cut down on the number of accidents. A hospital is a great location to have reflective lines.

Ambulances are in a hurry to get to the hospital and park in their designated area, so reflective lines can help organize the emergency drop-off area. Also, many people arrive and leave from the hospital tired, not feeling well, or impaired in some other way.

Reflective lines will make it easier for them to park safely as they get the help they need.

Airports are another important place to have reflective lines. Many flyers are running late for their flight, and as a result, they may not see the lines and cause a fender bender trying to park.

2. Invest in High-Quality Paint

Water-based paint is a great option if you’re on a tight budget.

It’s durable enough to do its job but it’s also affordable for smaller businesses. If you have a little wider of a budget and would rather pay more for your paint, invest in one of the more durable paints.

This will leave you with less maintenance responsibility. If you’re a larger business that doesn’t really have time to mess with paint every year, invest in a chlorinated rubber!

3. Hire a Professional 

When it comes to re-striping your parking lot, it’s best to let a professional handle this.

Sure, you can DIY your parking lot lines, but it’s best not to. A lot rides on having a safe and well-striped parking lot. A professional can ensure the highest quality of work, which may save you a lot of money in legal fees should your homemade lines be messy. 

Parking Lot Restriping Cost

When you weigh the cost of re-striping a parking lot with the legal repercussions of not having it properly striped, it’s not even comparable.

We mentioned earlier that legal fees can be up to $1 million. Well, re-striping your parking lot only costs around $300-800 (for smaller parking lots)!

Your cost will be determined by the cost of living in your area as well as the materials used. From the low to high-end of the spectrum, this should be an affordable fee every one or two years for any business.

Are You Ready to Re-Stripe Your Parking Lot?

If your lines are starting to fade, it’s time to think about re-striping a parking lot.

Reach out to us today for a free quote!

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Dan Kirksey
Dan Kirksey

Dan is an asphalt paving contractor and has been helping business owners and homeowners with their asphalt and concrete projects throughout Maryland for over a decade.

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