Repair the potholes, cracks, and heaves in your driveway before they cause damage to your vehicles or become far worse. Potholes are usually a deterioration of the surfacing material which can get much worse if left unrepaired, so plan on assessing your driveway and filling potholes at least once a year.
Fix the cracks. Potholes typically appear after cracks are left unrepaired for a period of time, which makes fixing these lines and cracks a time-sensitive issues. Otherwise, you may find it more prudent to have the entire driveway resurfaced.
Choose your battles. If you have a poor foundation under your driveway or are experiencing sinkholes in your property, you may want to hire a professional to cut away the area and refill before paving.
Take time to prepare your driveway. Before you begin to patch your driveway, make sure the surface is clean, dry, and free from any dust, debris, grass, or weeds. You may want to use a stiff-wire brush to get stubborn dirt or particles free, as the asphalt won't stick to these surfaces for any length of time, and cracks may ensue.
Filling the pothole:
Check the depth. If your hole extends beneath the first layer of asphalt in your driveway, you will need to fill the space with enough sand, fill, or gravel to bring it up to the lowest layer of asphalt.
Heat things up. Once you have your hole ready to be repaired, apply some heat via a blow-torch if you happen to have one. This will help soften the asphalt surrounding your pothole, which may make the patch stick and stay better.
Fill with pothole patching material. Go ahead and fill in the hole with your pothole patch material, which is found at most home improvement stores. Fill so it extends above the surface of your driveway a couple inches, as you will be tamping it down next.
Tamp it down. Now you are ready to tamp-down the pothole patch, which will take a little effort and elbow-grease. Keep tamping and compacting the asphalt in the hole; you may find that you need to add a bit more pothole patch material to make the surface level with your driveway. That is okay. Just keep filling and tamping as needed to completely fill the hole and bring it to the same level as the rest of your driveway.
Make sure that you keep traffic off your driveway until your pothole is patched and fully set after repairs. This may take 24-48 hours, but check the manufacturer recommendations on the specific pothole patch material that you are using. Use these tips to keep potholes from wreaking havoc on your vehicles each time you use your driveway; contact a paving contractor for larger sinkholes or when you prefer professional restoration of your home's paved spaces.