5 Ideal Applications For Chip Sealing

You have plenty of options when paving your driveway, private road, or other surfaces. With all the options, making an informed decision may seem overwhelming.

Don’t worry! We can help you make a solid decision about the best method for your needs.

Today General Pavement Management would like to introduce you to a cost-friendly, easy option: chip sealing.

If you want to know more about chip seal, its benefits, and its uses, you have come to the right place!

Keep reading to learn all that and more!


What Is Chip Seal Paving?

First, what is chip seal paving, and how does it work?

You could call chip seal the original paving solution. It’s a simple concept and has been around for a long time. The ancient Romans used rudimentary forms of chip seal on their roads to control dust and erosion in busy sections–and we still use the same concept today.

Chip seal is a thin layer of liquid asphalt applied to a road or other surface, followed by a layer of small stone chips. The stone chips are compacted into the liquid asphalt, and any excess chips are swept away. This leaves a protective layer of asphalt and chips on your road, driveway, or parking lot.

Chip sealing is not the same as repaving, although it is similar to the concept of sealcoating. Instead, it is simply a protective top layer that extends the life of your existing asphalt. However, it is also effective when applied as a simple type of pavement for driveways, wineries, rural parking lots, or private roads.

Have you ever seen those signs alongside the road that say “fresh tar and chips” or “loose stones – 35 mph?” This means the road you are driving on just got a coat of chip seal. You can drive on a freshly chip-sealed road about 15 minutes after the chip seal is applied, but you have to go a little slower to avoid knocking the chips loose before they completely set.

Now that we know what chip sealing is, let’s find out how it can benefit you.

5 Advantages Of Chip Sealing

Chip sealing in Santa Ynez is not the same as repaving a road, and it won’t accomplish the same things as a new layer of asphalt.

But it can greatly improve the asphalt surface. Here are five ways chip seal paving could benefit you:

5 Ideal Applications For Chip Sealing 1

1. Extends the life of your asphalt 

Applying a chip seal to existing asphalt helps protect the surface from wear and tear and seals  any small cracks or potholes that may be forming. The chip seal typically lasts 5-7 years and is  much cheaper than an asphalt overlay or repaving your road. It can extend the life of the road by many years.

2. Low maintenance 

Chip sealed surfaces hardly require any maintenance at all. They don’t need to be sealed regularly like asphalt surfaces, and maintenance is simple, only requiring you to occasionally sweep away any small stones that have broken loose.

If your chip and seal driveway or other surface starts looking like it needs a major facelift, you can refresh it by applying another thin layer of liquid asphalt and a few more chips every few years.

When maintaining a chip sealed surface avoid using anything heavy that would scrape the surface. Using abrasive tools such as snowplows might knock the chips loose and decrease the life of your seal.

3. Rustic look 

While smooth black asphalt paving has a polished look, chip seal paving has a more natural, rustic look. If you have a home in the country and want your driveway to match the surroundings, chip and seal is an excellent option. It is also an excellent option for wineries, farms, or other rural businesses.

Another advantage of chip and seal is that you can customize the look of your surface by choosing the stone color.

4. Solid upgrade for dirt or gravel surfaces 

If you want to upgrade a dirt or gravel surface but don’t want to spend the money on asphalt paving, chip, and seal is the perfect middle ground. It’s a solid upgrade from dirt or gravel, but it’s less expensive and easier to install than concrete or asphalt.

Because of this, chip and seal is often used for backroads, farm roads, or rural parking lots.

5. Good traction 

The rough surface of chip and seal provides excellent traction for vehicles when conditions are snowy or icy. If you live in an area with harsh winters, chip and seal might be a good idea.

Disadvantages of Chip Sealing 

Of course, chip seal paving also has some drawbacks. It doesn’t last as long as other paving materials and can be damaged by certain vehicles or by anything heavy dragging over it, such as snow plows. It is also a poor choice for high-traffic areas, as it wears down more easily.

It can also be hard to find contractors skilled with chip and seal, and it’s not a DIY-friendly project. You need the right equipment and skills to do it well.

If you are interested in finding a contractor to do your chip-sealing project, contact us here at General Pavement Management.We would love to help you out!

Where Should You Use Chip Sealing?

Chip seal does not have the integrity asphalt has and should only be used as a surface treatment.


If you use chip seal in high-traffic areas, it won’t last like asphalt and may need to be replaced in a few short years.

Chip sealing in Santa Ynez is the perfect alternative to asphalt in low-traffic areas where you need an upgrade from dirt or gravel without the cost of high-quality asphalt. Some common places to use chip and seal paving methods as your primary paving solution include:

  • Backroads
  • Private roads
  • Driveways
  • Wineries
  • Low-traffic parking lots
  • Farm and ranch roads

Chip and seal paving is also a cost-effective way to provide a fresh surface on existing asphalt. You can apply chip and seal over sealed or unsealed asphalt, concrete, or previously chip sealed surfaces.


Now you know more about chip seal paving and its benefits. We hope this article was helpful to you!

It can be a little tricky to find contractors that do chip seal. But if you are looking for a chip sealing contractor in Santa Ynez Valley and the surrounding areas, look no further!

General Pavement Management would be happy to help with your job. We offer chip seal paving as well as other pavement services, including:

If you would like to install a chip seal driveway, road, parking lot, or other surfaces, give us a call today! We serve locations in Southern California and all along the Central California Coast, including:

We look forward to hearing from you.