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Do Your Own Parking Lot Striping And Save

Updated on May 29, 2012
Learn How To Do Parking Lot Linestriping
Learn How To Do Parking Lot Linestriping | Source

Line Striping Your Own Parking Stalls Is Easy And Saves You Money!

Parking lot striping keeps your location looking professional and is the first impression given when people get to your property. Whether you are responsible for a strip mall, church, office building, school, or parking lot, you can easily learn how to keep it looking its best!

The benefits of doing it yourself are tremendous! Not only does it make for a clean business-like appearance, you will save money doing it yourself, and know how to keep it looking great. Plus, you can schedule when it's best for you to get the job done, with the least amount of disruption to your location's needs.

What Needs Doing Before Parking Lot Striping

My job here is to make sure you don't miss anything, so let me state what may seem obvious!

Asphalt sealcoating needs to be done every two years in order to keep it protected from the elements. When you sealcoat, you will black out all of your paint lines. So, the sealer must be applied before line striping.

For both the driveway sealer, and for the line striping paint, you must have a clean surface. Dirt, oil stains, leaves, and weeds will all prevent the adhesion you need to have a professional result.

Just as important is tackling crack repair. Small cracks only get bigger, and damage the foundation, leading to pot holes. The sooner you can fix them, the better, and it looks so much better too!

To learn more about how to clean, apply driveway sealer, and fix cracks, check out my hub How To Use Seal Coating Spray or my lens on Everything You Need To Know About Driveway Repair.

Last, but definitely not least, protect your work area with cones and caution tape to direct traffic, and keep it from spoiling all your hard work!

Tools And Supplies Needed

  • Line striping machine or a 4 inch roller
  • Line paint
  • Heavy toolbox, with hook or handle
  • Chalk String Line (100 ft. in length)
  • Rope (260 ft. in length)
  • Rope reel
  • 300 ft. tape measure
  • 18 inch orange cones
  • Caution tape
  • Parking lot protractor
  • Sealcoat
  • An additional weight with a hook

Measure Twice Paint Once

If it's just a matter of tracing over the existing paint, you'll still need to measure in order to know how much paint you'll need. Keep in mind if there's more than one color used, to measure each color separately.

Starting parking lot striping from scratch, or because you want a better parking set up is easy, but it does require careful planning. A stall needs to be 9 feet wide and 18 feet long. Most importantly, you must leave 24 feet between rows for your driving row. 

Measure your parking area carefully, and take the time to sketch it out. Decide which way works best to lay out your parking stalls and driving lanes. Be sure to factor in any obstacles, such as light posts, door access, and fire hydrants, as well as the number of larger stalls needed for handicapped parking. 

Any carpenter will tell you, "measure twice, cut once" and the exact same principle applies for line striping!

Parking Stall Measurements

Mark The Parking Stalls With Chalk

Now that you have a sketch of how your layout will look, use your measuring tape and your chalk line. Start with your first row of stalls and measure out the back of the stall. Remember, this has to be divisible by 9 feet. Use the chalk line to mark the line, and to make a mark every 9 ft for the stall lines. Move your chalk line to measure 18 ft on either end of the line and mark with a T. Use the measuring tape to place your matching T's every 9ft. The diagram below shows you exactly what I mean. Move on to the next set of stalls, remembering to leave a 24 foot laneway. 

When all the stalls have been marked, take a minute and walk through it. Can cars still drive in to the lot, or did you block off the entrance with a parking stall? Is the entry door still accessible? You haven't painted yet, so now's the time to find and fix any trouble spots.

Chalk Lines For Parking Layout

Time To Paint!

At last, you can paint. A line striping machine will make this the easiest part, but it can be done with a straight edge and a 4 inch roller. All you have to do is follow your chalk lines and the parking lot striping is done!

Made A Mistake? That's why you have driveway sealer handy! Simply paint sealer over any painting mistakes and allow to dry before repainting.

Don't Skimp On The Clean-Up! Be sure to follow directions for cleaning any machines, like a line striper, carefully and quickly. Whether you are renting the equipment, or you've invested in buying your own, you won't save any money if you've let paint dry in the system.

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