Understanding the Difference Between Asphalt Sealcoating and Asphalt Paving

MH Greeson is an asphalt sealcoating and paving maintenance company that serves the city of Atlanta, GA.  We are based in Marietta, GA and our service includes asphalt sealcoating, parking lot striping, asphalt repairs, pavement marking, bollard installation, parking lot maintenance and asphalt crack repair Atlanta.

Asphalt is a popular material used for constructing driveways, parking lots, and roadways due to its durability and cost-effectiveness. However, there are distinct differences between asphalt sealcoating and asphalt paving. While both processes contribute to the longevity and functionality of asphalt surfaces, they serve different purposes. This essay aims to clarify the dissimilarities between asphalt sealcoating and asphalt paving, exploring their processes, benefits, and applications.

Asphalt Sealcoating

Asphalt sealcoating refers to the process of applying a protective coating or sealant to an existing asphalt surface. It involves the application of a thin layer of sealant over the asphalt to protect it from the damaging effects of the sun, water, chemicals, and regular wear and tear. The sealcoating material typically consists of a mixture of asphalt emulsion, water, mineral fillers, and additives.

Benefits of Asphalt Sealcoating

– Protects against oxidation: Sealcoating acts as a barrier, preventing the penetration of harmful UV rays and reducing the oxidation process that leads to asphalt deterioration.

– Prevents water damage: By sealing the surface, water infiltration is minimized, preventing cracks, potholes, and other water-related damages.

– Enhances appearance: Sealcoating gives the asphalt surface a fresh, black appearance, improving its aesthetics and curb appeal.

– Increases durability: The sealcoating layer acts as a protective shield, reducing the impact of traffic, chemicals, and other elements on the asphalt surface.

– Extends lifespan: Regular sealcoating can extend the lifespan of an asphalt surface by up to 50%, reducing the need for costly repairs and replacements.


Asphalt sealcoating is typically performed on existing asphalt surfaces that are in good condition but require protection and maintenance. It is commonly used for driveways, parking lots, and small roadways. Sealcoating is recommended every 2-3 years, depending on the level of traffic and weather conditions.

Asphalt Paving

Asphalt paving, on the other hand, involves the construction of new asphalt surfaces or the complete resurfacing of existing ones. It is a more involved process that requires proper planning, site preparation, and the application of multiple layers of asphalt mix.

Process of Asphalt Paving

– Site preparation: The existing surface is thoroughly cleaned and prepared, ensuring proper drainage and removal of debris or vegetation.

– Base installation: A stable and well-compacted base layer is crucial for the longevity and durability of the asphalt surface. It may involve the use of crushed stone or gravel.

– Asphalt mix preparation: The asphalt mix is created by combining aggregates (such as sand, gravel, and crushed stone) with a binder (usually asphalt cement). The mixture is heated and thoroughly mixed to ensure consistency.

– Paving: The hot asphalt mix is then laid and compacted using specialized equipment, such as pavers and rollers, to achieve a smooth and even surface.

– Finishing touches: Once the asphalt is compacted, additional steps may be taken, such as applying a sealing coat, striping, or installing curbs or parking bumpers.

Benefits of Asphalt Paving

– Durability: Properly constructed asphalt surfaces can withstand heavy traffic loads and adverse weather conditions.

– Smooth and safe surface: Asphalt provides a smooth and skid-resistant surface, improving driving comfort and safety.

– Cost-effectiveness: Asphalt paving is generally more cost-effective than other paving materials, such as concrete.

– Quick installation: Asphalt surfaces can be installed relatively quickly, minimizing disruption to traffic or business operations.


Asphalt paving is suitable for new construction projects, such as roads, highways, parking lots, and driveways. It is also used when existing asphalt surfaces have deteriorated significantly and require complete resurfacing.

In summary, asphalt sealcoating and asphalt paving are distinct processes that serve different purposes in maintaining and constructing asphalt surfaces. Sealcoating involves applying a protective layer to existing asphalt, offering benefits such as increased durability, improved appearance, and extended lifespan. On the other hand, asphalt paving focuses on the construction of new surfaces or the complete resurfacing of existing ones, providing long-lasting and cost-effective solutions. Understanding the differences between these processes is essential for property owners and managers to make informed decisions regarding their asphalt maintenance and construction needs.