Should I DIY Tarmac Paint Or Hire A Professional?

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tarmac paint

Like most other things in your house, the tarmac driveways need maintenance too. In simple words, if you do not use a tarmac sealer (sometimes also mentioned as tarmac paint) to protect as well as preserve tarmac on the driveway, you’ll have to maintain it or repair it over time.

If you fail to do so then ultimately you will end up replacing it, which is a costly practice. You can avoid that by simply applying tarmac paint or tarmac sealer and also a little effort.

But now the question is should you do it yourself or hire an expert for the job. To answer that, you need to know what it takes to DIY tarmac paint. And then you will be able to determine whether you should go for a DIY project or hire a professional for the job.

What Is Tarmac Sealer or Tarmac Paint?

A tarmac paint or sealer is a water-based mixture with a base (generally asphalt) that’s combined with additives and fillers to offer strength and flexibility.

Tarmac paints act as a protection for your tarmac driveways to prevent damage from the UV rays, water penetration, chemical corrosion, and weather damage (including vehicle coolants, oil, and petrol).

Now, let’s see how you can DIY the project to protect your driveways.

How To DIY Tarmac Paint?


Driveway sealing or painting preparation takes a whole day or even more (including the drying time), and it is monotonous. The driveway paint application stage is way faster, which takes only a few hours or so per coating for a typical length driveway.

Most driveway paint manufacturers recommend 2 layering with a least drying time of 8 hours between layering, so your tarmac driveway painting project will take up your entire weekend. Yeah, that’s true! See why it will take an entire weekend!

Clean & Prime The Surface


Although you think the driveway is clean, believe us, it is NOT. Exhaust gas holds combustion by-products that deposit an oily object on the driveway.

That object, together with tree sap and dirt, must take place in case you want the paint to stick. So, you need to clean your tarmac driveway first.

Use a power washer or any other option that is available to you to clean the tarmac driveway first. Then scrub the driveway using a stiff-bristle broom.


Surfaces must be free from grease, dirt and other contaminants as well as it should be dry. Don’t apply the paint when your driveway is wet.

Rinse The Surface with a Strong Stream

protect tarmac resists oil

Flush the dirt and soap with a power washer or use a strong water stream from your driveway. After that, rinse it with clear water.

Next, let the surface completely dry before you apply the sealer or paint. Then give a final sweep using a push broom.

Remove The Oil Stains, If Any

use black tarmac paint

Pour a primer for oil spot on the damaged area and brush that into the pores using a one-time-use chip brush.

Make sure you do not apply the product under high humidity conditions as the primer dries by the evaporation of water.

Apply a 2nd layer. Let it dry completely before applying the tarmac driveway sealer on your tarmac surface and tarmac drives.

Cut in the Edges Of The Driveway

use asphalt paints in asphalt surface

Dip the brush into the tarmac sealer to apply the liberal layering to all edges of the tarmac driveway. Do not spread the paint too thin; you have to complete all the pores with the paint. After that, cut in all edges using a large brush.

Stage the Pails

tarmac paints

Estimate the coverage of every pail and thus stage every extra pail along your driveway. Be careful, as you fail to stage the pails accurately then your whole project will get wasted.

Pour The Tarmac Sealer onto Your Driveway

tarmac driveways waterproofs

Finally, it is time for pouring the sealer or tarmac restorer in the U-shape upside-down pattern. You need to pour the tarmac paint onto your driveway carefully. Avoid using cheap tarmac paint.

Spread the Tarmac Sealer

concrete surfaces

You need to evenly spread the tarmac driveway paint applying even pressure across and down the driveway. Then pick up the extra sealer or paint and start the subsequent row.

After that, spread the wet patch using a broom or squeegee, based on the manufacturer’s instructions. Pour sufficient sealer or paint to maintain a wet patch in front of the applier tool.

Wait for The Drying Time

tarmac drying time

Tarmac or asphalt surfaces take approximately 5 to 6 hours to completely dry. However, these times will be lower at extended depending on the weather conditions, temperatures, and the conditions of high humidity.


DIYing the project of painting or sealing the tarmac driveway takes a lot of effort and time. And a silly mistake or slight wrongdoing can ruin the project.

Should You Go For DIY or Hire a Professional Contractor For Tarmac Repair?

Professional-Contractor For Tarmac Repair

Tarmac painting may appear to be an easy task that wouldn’t need a professional contractor. Painting or repairing your tarmac driveway may not appear to be as difficult or extensive as working with the formation of your driveway. Surely it appears to be easy (until you start doing it), but you shouldn’t consider skipping it.

Painting your existing tarmac driveway all by yourself will certainly be cheaper as you can save money that you would have spent on hiring a professional.

But before you do it yourself, you need to consider your capability to do the task well, your access to tools, high areas, sufficient time, enough patience to do the job, and other factors.

Considering these things, in case you find the project to be simple and doesn’t need professional support then you can save some extra money.

However, as soon as you consider purchasing all the tarmac painting materials required (rollers, brushes, primer, repairing tools, dishes, and plastic sheeting, covers, and equipment), you will see those prices increase rapidly. And even before you realize it, the amount will reach up to what you would have spent on hiring the tarmac painting contractor otherwise.

So, isn’t it better to hire a professional to have a perfectly done job? When you try to do it yourself, you will end up spending more money (if you don’t have the equipment with you already and have to buy them all), spending time and effort. And even after that, you will not be able to get the best result which you will get from the professional contractors.


Over time, the tarmac damages because of exposure to rain, sun, thaw/freeze cycles, oil, fuel, de-icing salts, wear & tear, etc. which dry out with time and help to damage the driveway.

The glue or binder holding together the aggregate will break down and result in cracks and dents in the surface which, in case you leave untreated, will let water penetration resulting in more cracks, potholes, and ruts as well ultimate breakdown of the asphalt or tarmac.

Tarmac paints help to bond the existing binder or glue to protect it from more degradation, they aren’t a ‘topping’ and don’t replace the lost binder. That is why it is important to take the tarmac painting task seriously.


Q. Is there paint for the tarmac?

A. YES, of course, there is a paint for the tarmac. For example, Coo-Var W449 is a tarmac paint obtainable in black, red, and green. In case you’re looking for flexible, tough acrylic paint for the asphalt, concrete, or tarmac then you can try the Rustoleum Tarmacoat 6100. It is a heavy-duty paint to protect drives, balconies, paths, playgrounds, car parks, and also tennis courts.

Q. What is tarmac restorer, and how can it rejuvenate my old tarmac driveway in Ireland?

A. Tarmac restorer (or tarmacadam restorer) is a specially formulated coating that revives the appearance of aged and faded tarmac driveways. It not only enhances the color but also provides a protective layer that resists further wear and weathering, ensuring your driveway in Ireland looks as good as new.

Q. Can tarmac spray treatments prevent stone loss on my driveway?

A. Yes, applying a tarmac spray treatment can effectively bind the loose stones on your driveway, reducing tarmac stone loss. This treatment penetrates the tarmac to restore its original texture and strength, providing a durable surface that withstands everyday use.

Q. What should I do if my tarmac driveway starts to show signs of aging?

A. If your tarmac driveway shows signs of aging, such as cracking or fading, consider using a tarmac restorer or resealing it. These products replenish the essential oils lost over time, fill minor cracks, and restore the driveway’s rich black finish, extending its lifespan.

Q. How can I repair stone loss in my tarmac drive?

A. To repair stone loss in a tarmac drive, clean the area thoroughly, then apply a layer of tarmac restorer or a patching product designed for tarmac repair. This will help in re-bonding the loose stones and fill any gaps, enhancing the drive’s structural integrity and appearance.

Q. What maintenance does an old tarmac driveway require?

A. An old tarmac driveway requires regular cleaning, timely repair of any cracks or holes, and periodic application of a sealant or restorer. These maintenance steps are crucial to prevent further degradation and to keep the driveway looking its best.

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