Minnesota is at the same latitude as Siberia, and its weather is just as extreme, with temps soaring into the hundreds in the summer and plunging to -30F in the winter. While heat may not have much of an effect on your driveway, the cold can – and does.

Winter precipitation is a different animal

When your asphalt pavement is in good shape, the surface is completely waterproof. Rain, sleet, and hail run right off. Problems can begin when colder weather sets in. If there are minor cracks in your driveway, water, which always seeks the lowest level, will seep in. If there’s a cold snap, the water freezes. On a warmer day, it melts. A freeze/thaw cycle sets in that gradually widens the crack as the ice inside expands and contracts.

The same thing happens with a chip in the pavement. Over time, the freeze/thaw cycle turns that little ding into a pothole which, if not fixed in a timely manner, can damage your car.

How to get an upper hand on winter asphalt damage

One way to prevent ice damage to your driveway is to clear it as soon as you can after it snows. Cleaning down to the bare asphalt can prevent that icy buildup. Plus, if you do it early enough in the day, and the sun comes out, you’ll likely have a dry driveway by nightfall.

If your driveway does ice up, you can use ice melt. Unlike concrete, asphalt is impervious to salt.

Infrared repair

Another way is to have J&W Asphalt inspect your driveway. We’ll tell you honestly if it needs fixing, and give you an estimate for infrared repair. Cost-effective infrared repair fills in cracks, smooths lumps and bumps and reuses your existing asphalt to make your driveway whole again. It can be done in the fall, before winter arrives, or in the spring, after the snow season has ended.