If you’re a business owner with a brick-and-mortar store or office, you’re probably already aware of the importance of clearly visible stripes in your parking lot. These stripes designate not just parking spaces, but crosswalks, stop signs, handicap accessibility lanes and fire lanes as well.
What you may not know is when it’s time to restripe a parking lot. Being the owner, you’re probably at your business location every day, and as a result you won’t necessarily notice the gradual fading of your parking stripes overtime. While stripes that have worn down to half of their original visibility may appear satisfactory enough to you, they will not be as clear to many of your customers.
In many ways, your parking lot is the first representation of your business to potential customers. If the condition of that parking lot doesn’t meet a certain standard, those customers might conclude that the business itself isn’t up to par either. A parking lot restripe might just be the curb appeal you need to attract more business and communicate to your customers that you’re serious about the upkeep of your facility.
As a general rule of thumb, parking lots should be restriped once every 18 to 24 months. However, striping paint durability varies depending on several factors, including climate, traffic volume and frequency, and paint quality.
For example, environments such as Colorado typically experience heavy snowfall during the Winter. This necessitates snow removal via the use of plows, which grind away at the paint far more effectively than natural causes. It is therefore recommended that Colorado businesses restripe their parking lots once every year, especially in cases of heavier-than-average snowfall or if the business is located in the mountains.
Another scenario that would require a restripe is when the parking lot has been sealcoated, as is often the case after asphalt repairs have been performed. While sealcoating is necessary to protect the asphalt from the elements, it is undoubtedly going to cover up parking stripes.
We’ve all seen, and perhaps coveted, the handicapped parking spots located at virtually every business. These are just one example of ADA compliance in action, as businesses are required by law to provide access to disabled persons. Sometimes, a parking lot restripe may be required to meet newly-enacted ADA requirements for that business location.
The ADA is very specific in outlining parking stripe requirements, which include at least 1 handicap-accessible parking space for every 25 standard spaces, as well as a minimum number of van spaces. In addition, handicapped spaces are required to be the closest to the facility, with the shortest accessible path to the entrance that is free of any curbs or stairs. Aside from signs, clearly visible and brightly colored parking stripes are the most effective way to ensure that handicapped customers can properly navigate your parking lot.
Just as ADA compliance must be taken into account, fire and emergency code compliance also require upkeep of certain signs and pavement markings. Fire lanes, for instance, need to be clearly indicated at all times.
Arguably, the most important reason to restripe a parking lot is to maximize parking lot safety. Parking lots are chaotic enough by their very nature, but lots with faded stripes are prime locations for accidents to occur. If it’s provable beyond a reasonable doubt that an accident is the result of faded or otherwise non-visible stripes, your business may be at fault and held liable.
Perhaps the most obvious reason to restripe a parking lot is simply to enhance the customer experience. Faded stripes are likely to cause disorganization and confusion amongst your patrons as they try to figure out where to park. It can also lead to disorganized or illegal parking, which, as the result of inadequate paint markings, the customers often cannot be fairly held accountable for.
As many of us have first-hand knowledge of just how easily irked people can get behind the wheel, it’s easy to see how this could potentially chisel away at customer loyalty and retention. Though it may not seem so, having clearly marked parking stripes can double as a surprisingly effective marketing tactic.
When it comes time to restripe your parking lot, you have the option of doing it yourself or hiring an asphalt striping company. While line striping machines can be rented for DIY striping, it takes the expertise and skill of an asphalt contractor to provide the highest quality job.
Enright Companies has been providing parking lot striping in addition to our asphalt and concrete services for decades. Our highly-skilled team utilizes advanced technology and the highest quality paints to provide professional striping solutions for any business. If you’re looking to restripe your commercial parking lot, contact us today to get started.