Driveways take a lot of abuse. They’re constantly exposed to the elements – summer’s heat, winter’s ice and snow, rain in the spring and fall. They’re expected to endure the in-and-out wear and tear of a 2,000-lb. vehicle, not just once or twice, but maybe several times a day.

An asphalt driveway can last a long time, but eventually, it will need to be repaired or replaced. Here are some guidelines to help you determine the best course of action.

Signs of Asphalt Driveway Failure

Is your driveway failing, or is it just ugly? Take a critical look at your asphalt driveway.

  • Are there sections missing?
  • Have potholes developed?
  • Has the weight of your vehicles caused parts of the driveway to sink, leaving two or more distinct tracks leading to your garage?

Or perhaps frost heaves have pushed up the surface, leaving volcano-like craters behind. Oil, gas and other chemicals can also take their toll on your driveway’s surface. Improper water drainage can cause problems, too.

Can Repairs Extend the Life of Your Driveway?

Spot repairs can extend the life of your driveway, but think of them as more of a bandage than a fix. Over time, more spots will need repairing. Soon your driveway will be freckled like a leopard. From a contractor’s standpoint, spot repairs are time-consuming, and therefore, not a cost-effective alternative to a complete replacement.

When to Consider a Full Driveway Replacement

What’s in your budget? If you can’t afford to replace your entire driveway, spot repairs will get you through until you can afford to replace it. However, you will probably get more value for your dollars if you replace your driveway in the first place.

Replacing is more than a cosmetic treatment. It’s a complete re-do. The old or damaged asphalt is taken out down to the gravel underlayment and recycled. With the asphalt out of the way, it’s time to go in and fix those sunken areas and water drainage issues. Once the driveway bed is regraded, tightly compacted, and smooth, new asphalt is laid down and sealed. Voila! An asphalt driveway ready for 20 years of service!

J&W has been building a reputation in asphalt repair since 1976. We are a second-generation, family-owned business in the Twin Cities metro area. To repair or replace your damaged asphalt, give us a call at 952-977-8071, or contact us at