As we covered in our last post, there are few things worse than standing water for asphalt pavements. What starts as an innocent puddle eventually seeps through the surface of the asphalt and gradually erodes the layers beneath it, forming cracks and potholes over time. Large or small, puddles in parking lots are a clear indicator of issues with your asphalt pavement and potentially expensive repairs down the line.

Harmless as they may seem, puddles in parking lots are no joke. The sooner you identify and eliminate their root cause, the less likely you’ll be to shell out on major repairs or even resurfacing. First things first, you need to understand what causes puddles in parking lots.    

What Causes Puddles in Parking Lots?

There are many reasons behind puddles forming in parking lots, including:

Ruts, Dips, and Depressions

Ruts and uneven asphalt compaction are especially common causes of puddles in commercial parking lots and lots with heavy vehicle traffic. Over time, the pressure exerted by heavy vehicles like vans, trucks, and pickup trucks constantly driving over an asphalt pavement causes dips and depressions which, in turn, collect water whenever it rains. Ruts can also be caused by parking heavy vehicles in the same place for long periods. This eventually compacts the asphalt around the tire to form ruts.

In addition to compaction from heavy vehicles, puddles in parking lots can also be formed by grade depressions caused by poor compaction during paving. Therefore, it’s essential you hire a professional and reputable asphalt contractor to get the job done right from the start to minimize the chances of puddles forming. Regardless of how they’re formed, however, these ruts, dips, and depressions will gradually become deeper, turn into cracks, and lead to expensive repairs if left unchecked.

Inefficient or Damaged Drainage Systems

Not having anywhere to drain out to would naturally cause water to turn into puddles in your parking lot. Asphalt drainage systems are installed during the construction phase, where your contractor will assess the correct slope and grade to ensure adequate drainage. Unfortunately, this is one area where some asphalt contractors often try to cut corners, and you won’t notice the terrible job they’ve done until it rains.

Nevertheless, even a properly constructed asphalt drainage system needs regular checking and maintenance. Clogged or damaged drainage systems can cause water to form puddles in your parking lot, which will eventually seep through and wreak havoc on the asphalt structure.  

How to Prevent Puddles in Parking Lots

Preventing puddles in parking lots is all about tackling their root causes. In other words:

Repair Cracks, Ruts, Dips, and Depressions

Even the smallest of ruts, dips, and depressions can cause puddles and eventually turn into cracks. So, you need to address and repair any issues as soon as possible to prevent puddles from forming in your asphalt parking lot. Patching and crack filling are two of the most common asphalt repairs carried out and staying on top of any asphalt issues is your best bet to extend the life of your asphalt pavement.

Repair or Replace Damaged or Inefficient Drainage Systems

Your parking lot’s drainage system isn’t something to be taken lightly. This seemingly simple system plays a key role in maintaining your parking lot’s structural integrity, especially from the effects of cold weather on asphalt. Be sure to regularly clean, maintain, and unclog your drainage system to keep it working in tip-top condition and prevent puddles in your asphalt parking lot.  

Get in touch with Holloway Paving today if you’re looking to prevent puddles in your parking lot or repair the damage they cause. Serving the Calgary community for over 20 years, we’re proud to be Calgary’s most trusted paving company and offer free quotes on any of our asphalt paving services.