Did you know the average lifespan of an asphalt parking lot is twenty to forty years? Proper maintenance can extend that lifespan significantly.
If your business has a parking lot, you want to get the highest return on investment (ROI). The longer the lifespan of your commercial parking lot, the higher the ROI.
Many business owners are unsure of what proper upkeep of their parking lots entails. Continue reading to learn everything you need to know about commercial parking lot maintenance.
Why is Commercial Parking Lot Maintenance Important?
Maintaining your commercial parking lot is important for several reasons. The most important is that proper year-round maintenance can help keep your employees and customers safe. A parking lot can quickly become a safety hazard if not taken proper care of.
Great maintenance of your parking lot is also important for your customer reputation. If people driving by see your parking lot is a mess, they aren’t likely to patronize your store. If you care so little about your parking lot (which is easily viewed by everyone), clients might assume you don’t care about your products or services either.
What Issues Can Arise if Parking Lot Isn’t Maintained?
If a parking lot isn’t well-maintained, a lot of serious issues can arise. A few of these issues include:
- large cracks
- uneven pavement
- deterioration of the asphalt surface
- slick, slippery surfaces caused by leaves, ice, or snow
- a decrease in the overall lifetime of the parking lot
These are serious issues that can pose a significant risk to the safety of your employees and customers. It also amounts to a poor investment and significantly decreases your return on investment (ROI).
The needs of your parking lot will vary based on the season. Each season’s parking lot checklist is described below.
Winter Parking Lot Checklist
The winter is when your commercial parking lot has the potential to be the most dangerous. Ice and snow can create unsafe walking conditions. These elements can also cause a lot of damage to your asphalt if they aren’t properly taken care of.
Before it snows, you want to use a liquid anti-icing agent. This will help prevent a buildup of snow or icing. It will also help stop these elements from bonding to the surface of your parking lot and causing damage.
Remove snow as soon as possible. Only after plowing snow away should agents like salt, sand, or deicers be applied.
Try to minimize the amount of salt used in your commercial parking lot. For every tablespoon of salt used, five gallons of water will become permanently polluted and unfit for human or animal consumption. Instead, try to choose products that don’t contain chloride.
When applying deicing products to your commercial parking lot, use a sprayer or shaker. This will help you use less product than if you use your hand for application.
Spring Parking Lot Checklist
Spring commercial parking lot maintenance is mostly about fixing the damage done to the asphalt during the winter. This includes checking for cracks that might have formed. If any cracks are found, they should be sealed immediately.
Routine sweeping of the parking lot is vital. Debris can quickly become a hazard. Also, remember to check the drainage systems to see if they’ve become clogged over winter.
Throughout spring, you should also be removing any weeds that pop up in cracks. Weeding the edges of your parking lot is also recommended.
Summer Parking Lot Checklist
Summer is a good time to tackle larger maintenance projects. The weather is nicer, presenting a better time to spend lengthy times outdoors.
Every few years, you should add a new seal coat to your parking lot. This will help to stop the natural oxidation process of asphalt, so your parking lot lasts longer. Directly after seal coating, you should re-stripe your parking lot.
During summer, you’ll still want to keep up with any weeds. Continue routine checks for cracks and sweeping your parking lot.
Fall Parking Lot Checklist
Your fall commercial parking lot checklist is mostly about prepping it for the winter. This is your last chance to take care of any large projects you might have been putting off.
An important thing to do during the fall is to remove any leaves. Although it might seem innocent enough, the composition of the leaves can alter that of your parking lot if left long enough. Leaves are also a big slipping hazard.
Take extra care to get rid of any debris through sweeping. Check the drainage system again before winter comes. Ensure no leaves are clogging the drain because this can be disastrous once snows start coming.
Like in the spring, check for any cracks or damage to the parking lot. Review the customer and employee access points to ensure they’re safe.
Commercial Parking Lot Maintenance to Consider Outsourcing
Commercial parking lots require a lot of maintenance. While employees can take care of most tasks, some larger projects require the attention of professionals. A few of the maintenance items you should consider outsourcing include:
- seal coating and re-striping your parking lot
- snow plowing/snow removal
- scheduled street sweeper services
- thorough drainage inspection (at least once a year)
Outsourcing these tasks to professionals will make life easier for your employees. Since these are such important tasks, outsourcing will also allow you greater peace of mind.
For More Information
A parking lot requires a lot of upkeep year-round. Each season has a specific set of tasks that need accomplishing. Outsourcing some tasks make the most sense.