How to efficiently repair a 300' long asphalt driveway?


Should I use the asphalt crack repair in-a-tube or the loose stuff in a bucket for the cracks? It's a 50 year old driveway and the it's going to take a lot of whatever I use to fill the cracks. And I mean a lot, like 40 tubes.

There are some high and low spots on the parking pad. High spots: Will a belt sander (40 grit) even make a dent or should I use a special grinder blade in a 4" angle grinder (tedious), or what will grind down the aggregate in the asphalt? I don't want to rent a 50lb.commercial grinder that I can't physically use, due to its weight. Maybe take a torch to it and melt-out the tar, then how to remove the remaining high aggregate?

Patching the low spots seems straight forward - prep the surface, apply at the correct temperature, compact.

Do I have to use a power washer on everything, to get the slurry coat or top coat/sealer to stick or can I use a soap solution and the garden hose? I've a stiff deck brush on a long handle. How deep/wide of cracks will that slurry/top coat/sealer fill, 1/4"? With the high quotes I'm getting to have pros do it, I can afford to rent a power washer for two days.

  4 answers
  • Melinda Melinda on Apr 22, 2019

    I was wondering...With the age and all of the highs/lows you describe, have you looked into chip sealing? It's a process where a commercial agency lays down a layer of tar, then covers with a layer of aggregate, then rolls it and sweeps off the loose material. -I have no idea what the cost would be, but the process is quite effective and pretty quick. The final look might be a bit more rough than you're looking for though...As far as the sealer goes, the driveway would have to be pressure washed and dry, then the sealer is put on with a roller. You'd still have to patch the pot holes if you have them by digging out the old material, packing in a base of crushed rock, and then compacting the filler on top. One more thought...If you have a particularly bad/crumbly spots, you can cut them out with a concrete saw, and patch with filler, then compact. Any way you look at this, you have a big job ahead...:O

    • Lifestyles Homes Lifestyles Homes on Apr 22, 2019

      Thanks, I’d forgotten about chip sealing. Thank you.

      Being in the architecture profession, I’m quite technical, it’s just the body doesn’t want to work as hard as the mind, after all these years, lol.

  • Ahilly Ahilly on Apr 22, 2019

    Maybe talk with your township road master / crew about what would be best. Sounds like an awfully hard DYI project !

    • See 1 previous
    • Lifestyles Homes Lifestyles Homes on Apr 22, 2019

      I live in a private development that has 3 jurisdictions that all point fingers at each other, as to Who is responsible for What.

      I don’t give up, since I provide architectural consulting services to Cities.

      For example, the City’s broken water mains, in the County right of way, with the local Township’s roads,

      took 7 months to finally remove & replace their failed lines, my subsequently silted-in culvert and the townships fire department crushing the end of my culvert.

      Here’s today’s progress of that circle-logic.

      Bottom line: this is my 300’ driveway, not Right Of Way Property.

  • Ahilly Ahilly on Apr 22, 2019

    Ye gads ! You sure have a challenge there ! But at least it’s getting work done on it that should last a long while once completed ! Perhaps you can get a major discount on your property taxes for inaccessibility or something ! That might make someone sit up and take notice and barter a paved driveway for you not filing suit ? LOL ! Best of luck !

  • Lifestyles Homes Lifestyles Homes on Apr 23, 2019


    Those pictures are just the bottom 20’ of my driveway that I fought to get the City to replace. (I’m ok with heavy construction management, as that’s part of my profession).

    meanwhile, I have another 300’ feet x 15’ wide of my driveway up a hill to repair.

    I cant afford to spend $5K to have pros of it.