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How to: Seal an Asphalt Driveway

Maintain an asphalt driveway and it will serve you well. Here's how to seal an asphalt driveway with step-by-step instructions and the materials and tools you need.

By Gene and Katie Hamilton

Tools Required:

  • Push broom
  • Scrub brush
  • Garden hose
  • Old push broom or sealer applicator

Materials Required

  • Asphalt sealer
  • Asphalt cleaner
  • Asphalt primer

Before You Begin

Turn the pails of sealer upside down (with the lid secured) to help mix up any contents that may have settled.

The driveway surface may be damp, but there shouldn't be puddles or standing water. On very hot days it's a good idea to mist the surface just before pouring the sealer.

Step  1:   Weed the soil bordering the driveway

Then cut back weeds or grass growing along the driveway so it is trimmed away from the surface of the driveway.

Step  2:   Clean the surface

Clean driveway surface

Use soapy water to scrub the driveway surface, then with a garden hose rinse with clear water and let dry. Pay particular attention to areas beneath trees and remove sap and residue from eaves.

Clean driveway surface

If there are patches of gas, oil or grease, use a driveway cleaner to remove them. Then apply an asphalt primer that prevents the spots from bleeding through the new application of sealer.

Step  3:   Apply the sealer

Apply asphalt sealer

Beginning at the garage and working towards the street, carefully pour a ribbon of sealer a few inches wide and several feet long onto the driveway.

Apply asphalt sealer

Using a push broom or sealer applicator, spread the sealer evenly around and distribute the excess material evenly to a uniform thickness. Make the finishing strokes in the same direction.

Step  4:   Block off the driveway

Put a barricade at the end of the driveway to prevent anyone from driving on it for at least 24 hours.

Illustrations courtesy of Sears Weatherbeater Driveway Sealer