How Long After Paving Can You Drive on Asphalt?

Whether you are a homeowner or a business owner, repaving your asphalt driveway is a big investment, and it can be frustrating to wait until the asphalt is fully dry before you can drive on it.

On average, it takes 24 hours for asphalt paving to dry completely. However, several factors can influence how soon you can drive on new asphalt.

This blog post will cover how you can drive on new asphalt, how soon you can drive on it, and some factors that can affect its cure time.

Factors That Can Affect the Cure Time of Asphalt

Many factors can affect the time it takes for asphalt paving to dry; here are just a few of them: 


Hotter temperatures accelerate the evaporation of asphalt’s volatile oils, which makes the pavement harden faster. Colder temperatures slow down that process and make it take longer for the asphalt to cure completely. 


High humidity levels can absorb heat from the sun and keep it from reaching the pavement’s surface, making it harder for the oils to evaporate and causing it to take longer for the pavement to dry.


The thicker an asphalt layer is, the longer it will take to dry. This means that if your driveway has been resurfaced with an extra thick layer of asphalt, then you may have to wait up to 48 hours before driving on it. 


Low wind speeds disperse any moisture in the air, which helps speed up how quickly your new pavement dries out. But high winds can blow dust particles onto your newly paved surface, making your driveway less smooth and increasing its drying time even further. 

Extra Precautions to Consider

When using freshly paved asphalt, there are a few other things you need to keep in mind:

  • Don't park on top of newly paved surfaces: Large vehicles like cars, trucks, and vans put more pressure on recently laid pavements than normal foot traffic does. So, avoid parking on top of newly paved surfaces until they have had enough time to cure completely (24-48 hours).
  • Don't walk or bike on top of freshly laid pavements either:  Walking or riding bicycles over freshly built pavement can leave impressions on the surface or damage the edges, creating weak points where water can seep through and weaken the pavement over time.
  • Keep away from heavy machinery or construction vehicles: Heavy machinery like bulldozers will also cause indentations in newly laid pavements if they drive over them. At the same time, they're still wet so keep them away from asphalts surfaces until they're fully dried out (24-48 hours).
  • Be aware of traffic patterns: If you live in an area with a lot of traffic, such as near highways or busy streets, then be aware that heavy vehicular traffic could cause premature wear on freshly laid pavements, especially if cars are driving over them at high speeds so be sure to consider that when planning out when you'll let people start driving over your newly paved driveway again after installation (24-48 hours).

New How to Speed up the Driving Process of Asphalt?

Here are three tips to speed up how quickly your new asphalt paving dries out:

  1. Install windbreaks: If you live in a windy area, consider installing windbreaks around your home or business to keep those gusts from blowing dust particles onto your new pavement's surface. This also helps to disperse any moisture in the air that would otherwise slow down how quickly its oils evaporate and cause drying delays (24-48 hours)
  2. Increase temperatures by adding blacktop sealant: A blacktop sealant can help increase temperature levels around newly paved surfaces. This will speed up how quickly their volatile oils evaporate, thus shortening drying times significantly (24-48 hours).
  3. Use appropriate curing agents: Applying curing agents like calcium chloride or magnesium chloride after paving will help accelerate drying times significantly since these chemicals act as absorbers that soak up any remaining moisture from oil evaporation. Thus, allowing pavements to become completely cured much faster (24-48 hours).     

Delivering All Your Paving Needs on Time

For all your residential and commercial paving needs across Connecticut, turn no further than our team at Asphalt Paving by DW!

We are a local business based in Northeast Connecticut, providing services that include paving, sealing, asphalt driveway crack repair, grading, and more.

Whether you need help laying the asphalt for a commercial or residential driveway, you can count on our fast service with reliable results every single time—call us today at (860) 848-8808 or submit our contact form online. 

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