Make My Home Square Blog - HomeSquare

Make My Home Square Blog

Winter Is Coming – It’s Time for Driveway Sealing

Driveway sealing is critical to maintain its lifeYour driveway should last anywhere from 15 to 35 years – if you take care of it well.

The average homeowner pays anywhere from $1,000 to $5,000 — and even into five-figure territory — to tear up and repour a new driveway. Although the cost varies depending on driveway length, material and shape, one thing’s for sure – it’s not cheap. Such a large investment, especially for an item so heavily used, certainly needs to be taken care of adequately.

Once installed, the life of your driveway is calculated based on the materials from which it’s paved, weather conditions and good old-fashioned TLC. While it’s difficult to control what exactly happens to a driveway – after all, it’s outside and at Mother Nature’s mercy — the one proactive step homeowners can take is driveway sealing.

What is driveway sealing, anyway?

In short, driveway sealing is the application of a protective coating which adds years to a driveway’s useful life.

Homeowners typically choose between asphalt or concrete when constructing a driveway. Cheaper to install and easier to maintain, asphalt is typically the go-to driveway building material. While concrete is more expensive to install and maintain, those driveways can command 10 additional usage years over asphalt. Asphalt also expands in response to the weather, while concrete cracks under extreme fluctuations or pressure.

Driveway sealing helps protect asphalt driveway

Asphalt can be cheaper to install and easier to maintain/repair.

Driveway sealing helps protect concrete driveways

Concrete is more expensive but requires less maintenance.

Ironically enough, these materials are nowhere near as resilient to the elements as one would expect from something as sturdy as concrete or asphalt. Rain, snow and even UV rays and oxygen damage a driveway over time, shortening its expected decades-long lifespan. In enters driveway sealing, the top line of defense homeowners have to protect their driveway against the elements.

How pre-winter driveway sealing protects your pavement

  • Driveway sealing repels rain, and consequentially, snow. It might sound counterintuitive, but rain is actually one of the most harmful substances for pavement. Moisture can deteriorate asphalt surfaces, while rain and snow can worsen any cracks in a concrete driveway. Accelerated by the snow-melting road salt, this moisture settles into the crevices and expands when it re-freezes, worsening imperfections in the pavement. Northeast homeowners who expect snowstorms and maybe even a blizzard over the course of a standard winter are particularly vulnerable to this kind of damage. Driveway sealing repels this damaging moisture, adding years to your driveway’s crack-free life.
  • Sealants fill in surface damage. All that melting snow makes its way into small imperfections, tiny cracks or indecipherable dings. When the snow melts and re-freezes when the temperature drops, any moisture in the cracks expands and worsens any “cosmetic” imperfections. Driveway sealing prevents moisture from entering these imperfections in the first place by filling in surface damage.
  • It serves as a repellant for oil, fuel and fluid. If your driveway is susceptible to sun and air, it goes without saying that fluids from your car will be even more harsh. Gasoline, oil, antifreeze and other fluids break down asphalt, significantly shortening your driveway’s lifespan. Driveway sealing is the protective layer which keeps these harmful materials from stripping your driveway’s surface.

How often do you need to seal your driveway?

Just like the life of your driveway can vary widely, so too can the life of your sealant. The estimates vary wildly, from annually to every 10 years. Much of this depends on the weather, if your driveway is built from asphalt or concrete, and the TLC you’re putting into your driveway in the first place. In the northeast, homeowners can expect sunshine, snow, road salt, rain and wildly-fluctuating temperatures over the course of a year. These conditions mean that annual or biennial driveway sealing will help extend the life of your investment.

Raise Your Holiday Game

holiday tabletop arrangementby guest author Shawna Feeley

From the beginning of September to St. Patrick’s Day, I can think of at least 7 opportunities to get your holiday décor game on.  None of this involves a trip to Party City, just so we’re clear.  I’m talking about carving pumpkins, hand making decorations, setting up elaborate lights, utilizing organic materials and creating deep resentment from friends and relatives who cannot pull this stuff off as effortlessly as you do. You know, what the holidays are really all about.  The most import thing about being a holiday entertainer is to remember the golden rule: treat your guest as you would like others to treat you.  A candle in the bathroom, enough toilet paper, hand towels, and wonderful sights and sounds, along with tantalizing smells and delicious food and beverages.  If this sounds difficult to do right, well that’s because it is.  It takes tons of effort and lots more time than you probably have, but it’s time to dig deep and show them what your made of: LET’S GET THIS PARTY STARTED!!!!!

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Dreading Bathroom Repair Services? Take These Preventative Steps!

preventative maintenance in your bathroom lets you focus on the important stuff, like familyAs long as water is running from the faucets and straight down the drain, your bathroom is certainly in fine working order… or is it?

In many ways, the bathroom is a center point of your home. Many major systems such as plumbing, water supply, electrical, drainage and ventilation all come together in your bathroom. Without a properly-functioning bathroom, all these systems can be affected in some way.

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How a Rental Property Maintenance Company Assists Faraway Landlords

new york landlord maintenance solutionWhen it comes to owning rental property, there’s always something needing to be done throughout the year. Whether it’s getting ready for new tenants, fixing issues or upgrading the property, rental property maintenance can turn into a large job which needs frequent attention and supervision.

Such work may not be a big burden if your rental property is located in the same building, block or town in which you live. But what if you live a few towns over, an hour away, or even in another state? If you don’t live close by, rental property maintenance can become a tremendous nuisance.

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Which Home Maintenance Service Plan Fits Your Needs?

Plumber checking off task list on clipboardIt’s so easy to put home maintenance on the back burner. After all, if everything looks fine, it must be fine, right?

While that’s not exactly the case, it’s certainly the most convenient way to approach our homes between long days at the office, shuttling kids to soccer practice and nights out with friends and family. Who has time to think about the sluggish shower drain or the slightly-askew gutter downspout?

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Beyond Gutter Cleaning: Essential Maintenance Services You Need Every Fall

fall home maintenance means more than gutter cleaningWhile our transition into fall typically involves treating ourselves to a pumpkin spice latte, your home also needs seasonal pick-me-up. Checkups and calibrations are the equivalent of your home’s “winter coat,” insulating and protecting your property during the coming winter storms against the cycle of precipitation, freezing and thawing. Although you probably won’t see snow until November or December, the changing weather will start taking its hold before you know it.

You’re probably familiar with some basic autumn-time tasks, such as gutter cleaning before the snow and ice arrives, but there are a variety of to-dos to put on your list to ensure that your home weathers the cold season in stride.

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Try A New Accent

by guest author Shawna Feeley

Accent walls are a spectacular way to bring style to a room.  A key to great design is layered textures, patterns and pops of color.  Using strong elements in a room brings a focus and purpose to the room’s personality.  A bold choice pays off and sometimes an accent wall is all that is needed. Wood, wallpaper, BOLD paint colors, murals and textural paint techniques are all fantastic ways to create an accent wall. And do not forget that the ceiling is the fifth wall and could be the right place to add interest and color.

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A Cheap Handyman Can Do More Harm Than Good

cheap incompetent handyman can do more harm than good

Collecting and comparing price points is one of the most important pieces of information you’ll receive during your search for the right handyman. You want to make sure you’re getting the best quality at the best possible price, but prioritizing price over quality can be a risky approach.

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Kitchen Design Updates That Don’t Break The Bank

by guest author Shawna Feeley

My favorite space in almost any house is the kitchen.  When it is well-designed, it provides an arena to cook, create, commune and to just hang out.  Kids do their homework and families connect in this functional and well used space. Therefore, it imperative that you love this special room in your home and it makes you happy.  If, this is not the case, here are some kitchen updates that will bring a smile to your face without creating a hole in your wallet.

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Does home remodeling make sense for your family?

home remodeling services from HomeSquare, shown in this consultation with a homeownerAs the saying goes, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” But what if your home simply isn’t working for you anymore?

It’s possible that your family has outgrown a three-bedroom setup, or a step-in bathtub is impractical due to limited mobility. Maybe you’ve always dreamed of an open floor plan, or it’s possible that some major structural elements, such as the roof, windows or doors, are due for a replacement. Your home isn’t “broken,” per se, but it could benefit from a value-boosting pick-me-up.

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