Having your asphalt or concrete driveway professionally sealed does more than just make your driveway look good—it preserves your driveway’s strength and gives it a smooth finish. It will also help it last longer and avoid costly repairs. Applying an industrial-grade sealer will also prevent oil, gas and other contaminants from staining the surface over time. A waterproof and weatherproof sealer stops water, snow and ice from permeating the top layer of your driveway; this is important because once water is inside your driveway it will be more susceptible to potholes and cracks due to freeze and thaw cycles. Over time, air and the sun’s UV rays can oxidize your asphalt driveway, causing the binding agent to break down and the driveway itself to start to crumble. A strong sealer will provide a protective top layer to prevent this breakdown. Finally, sealer helps keep your concrete or asphalt driveway strong despite the heavy weight of vehicles driving on it day in and out.
Driveway sealing professionals recommend you apply sealant every one to three years. The frequency depends on how extreme the weather is in your area and the level of protection you need due to use. It’s a good idea to seal a newly installed concrete or asphalt driveway, but not immediately: both asphalt and concrete need a setting or curing period before a top coat can be applied. There are DIY sealers, but the benefits of professional application are that the pros use industrial-grade sealant not available to the public, they have specialty equipment and tools for precision application, and they have the experience and industry knowledge about proper mixing and application, explain Don and Joe McDonald, owners of Seal-It, LLC in Woodford, Virginia. There are several factors that affect the average cost of driveway sealing.
Many professional sealing companies offer a price per square foot for their services. Costs can vary based on whether your driveway is made of concrete or asphalt, what type of sealer you need, what regional labor costs, how large your driveway is, and other business overhead considerations. Driveway texture will also impact cost, as coarse asphalt driveways can require more sealant to deliver a smooth surface. In general, the larger your driveway, the lower the cost per square foot to seal it. Here are some examples of cost for sealing a driveway:
$0.25: Average cost per square foot to seal an asphalt driveway with a hot rubberized tar treatment from All Pro Paving in Perris, California. Coating lasts 3-5 years. Coarser asphalt will require more product and may have a higher price per square foot.
$0.20: Cost per square foot for a larger surface, approximately 20,000 square feet and up—for example, a parking lot—from All Pro Paving.
$200-$300: Average cost to seal a standard residential concrete driveway from 4 U 2 Concrete in Aurora, Colorado. A coating lasts 1-2 years.
Minimum service fee
Companies may have a minimum service fee to cover business costs such as licensing, insurance, company vehicles, wages, equipment, materials and everything else required to get workers to your door, ready to seal your driveway. This is why you may be charged a minimum service fee even if you only have a small area to be sealed. Here is one example:
- Minimum service fee: $150 from Seal-It, LLC, regardless of how small the driveway is.
Sealant can’t fix existing damage; it only serves to prevent future problems. If you have cracks or potholes in your driveway, it’s wise to repair them before applying a sealant. The cost to repair asphalt and concrete varies based on the square footage of the repair to be done. In general, the larger the repair job, the lower the price per square foot. The cost per square foot accounts for the labor, business overhead and cost of materials. Here are examples of asphalt repair costs from All Pro Paving in Perris, California:
$2: Per square foot for repairs for a 7,000-square-foot driveway.
$3: Per square foot for repairs for a 1,500-square-feet driveway.
- Regardless of cost per square foot, there may be a minimum service fee.