Are you building a new commercial parking lot? Is your existing lot looking worn, tired, or needing a refresh?

If so, you probably have parking lot striping on your mind.

An essential part of any functional, professional-looking parking lot, parking lot striping helps direct traffic and parking and keeps your customers and employees safe.

Here at Betz Works, we’ve been providing commercial paving services since 1958. In this blog, we’ve compiled our extensive knowledge to outline everything you need to know about striping your commercial parking lot. 

Key Takeaways

  • While DIY parking lot striping can be cost-effective, investing in professional services ensures a compliant, high-quality, long-lasting product. 
  • To stripe your commercial parking lot, temporarily arrange for parking elsewhere, fix and fill potholes and cracks, clean and dry the paved surface, measure and mark all parking spaces, stripe the lot, and allow the paint to dry before reopening the space to parking. 
  • For reliable parking lot striping services you can trust, contact Betz Works. 

Before You Get Started

Set yourself up for success by doing these things before you begin work on your parking lot:

1. Consider whether to DIY the parking lot striping or hire professionals.

While DIY striping can be cost-effective, professional services guarantee higher quality and durability. 

Working with a pro also ensures that your parking lot remains visually appealing and compliant with local regulations.

2. Pick the best time.

The best time to stripe your parking lot is immediately after sealcoating, which should be done once a year. 

Additionally, consider weather and temperature conditions; dry, warm days are ideal for striping, since the paint will dry faster and adhere more securely to the parking lot surface.

3. Choose the right equipment for DIY parking lot striping. 

If you’re choosing a DIY approach to parking lot striping, you’ll need the right equipment. 

This includes a high-quality striping machine that can handle the paint type you choose (water-based or solvent-based) and is specifically designed for parking lot surfaces. 

You’ll also need high-visibility, durable paint, stencils for marking specific symbols (handicap, no parking, arrows, etc.), measuring tools for precise line spacing, and safety gear for the person performing the striping. 

Having all the necessary equipment ensures a professional-looking finish and adherence to parking lot striping standards.

4. Select the appropriate paint for your needs. 

Choosing the right paint is critical for parking lot striping as it affects both the durability of the stripes and compliance with regulations. 

Two types of paint are primarily used for striping: water-based acrylics and solvent-based paints. 

Water-based acrylics are environmentally friendly, fast-drying, and ideal for areas with strict environmental regulations. 

Solvent-based paints, on the other hand, last longer and are better suited for high-traffic areas.

Choosing bright, highly visible colors for your parking lot striping is also essential. 

Typical colors include white for standard parking spaces, blue for handicapped spaces, and yellow for no parking zones, crosswalks, and loading areas. 

5. Ensure ADA compliance in your layout and designs. 

When planning your parking lot striping, it’s essential to follow the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) guidelines. 

This includes allocating adequate space for handicapped parking, ensuring these spots are closest to the building entrance, and providing accessible pathways from the parking area to the building. 

These spaces should be marked with high-visibility paint and include the universal accessibility symbol. 

Additionally, consider the proper width of parking spaces and access aisles to accommodate vehicles of individuals with disabilities. 

A Step-by-Step Guide to Parking Lot Striping

parking lot

Whether you’re striping a parking lot for the first time or restriping an existing lot, the process demands careful planning and execution. 

Here’s a step-by-step guide:

1. Temporarily Arrange for Parking at Another Location

Before you start the striping process, temporarily relocate parking to another location. 

This will help you avoid disruptions to your business operations and ensure the safety of all vehicles and personnel involved in the paving process.

Pro Tip: Communicate the paving schedule in advance to employees, customers, and nearby businesses so everyone is on the same page, and you can minimize inconvenience and confusion.

2. Fix and Fill Potholes and Cracks

Inspect the parking lot for any potholes, cracks, and other surface damage. Use a high-quality asphalt patch or filler to repair these areas thoroughly – check out our guide for more information. 

For restriping projects, repairing the surface can significantly improve the final appearance and extend the life of your parking lot.

Pro Tip: Ensure the repaired areas are completely dry and set before proceeding to the next step to prevent uneven surfaces or adherence issues with the striping paint.

3. Clean and Dry the Paved Surface

A clean surface is crucial for the paint to adhere properly. 

Use blowers, brushes, or pressure washers to remove dust, debris, and oils from the pavement. 

Keep in mind that the area must be completely dry before you apply any paint; otherwise, it won’t adhere correctly to the parking lot surface.

Pro Tip: Consider scheduling the cleaning process when the weather forecast indicates a dry period ahead to speed up the drying process naturally.

4. Mark and Measure All Parking Spaces

Next, decide on the layout of your parking lot lines. Be sure to consider the most efficient use of space and the flow of traffic.

Here are a few general guidelines:

  • Straight-in parking spaces should be striped at 90-degree angles with a minimum aisle requirement of 22 feet.
  • Angled stalls on 45 to 60-degree angles typically have 16-foot aisles.
  • The size of parallel parking spaces depends on whether the spaces are arranged on roadways with two-way or one-way traffic. Spaces near two-way traffic should have 22-foot aisles, while spaces near one-way traffic need at least 12 feet.
  • Standard parking spaces are 9 feet x 18 feet, while compact spaces are 7.5 feet x 15 feet to 8.5 feet x 17 feet.

Pro Tip: Use a chalk line or marking paint for preliminary outlines. This allows for adjustments before the final application and helps ensure that parking spaces are uniformly sized and properly aligned.

5. Stripe the Lot

Once the layout is finalized and marked, apply the chosen paint using a striping machine for crisp, straight lines.

For best results, carefully follow the manufacturer’s instructions on the paint and equipment you’ve chosen. 

Pro Tip: For restriping, apply the new coat over existing lines to maintain consistency. If you’re reconfiguring spaces, ensure all old lines are completely obscured or removed.

6. Let It Dry

Allow the paint to dry before you allow cars to park in the lot. This ensures durability and the best appearance of the lines.

Pro Tip: Increase the drying speed by scheduling the striping during optimal weather conditions (avoiding high humidity or cold temperatures). Use barricades or signs to prevent people from driving into the lot before it’s ready. 

Trust Betz Works for Your Commercial Parking Lot Striping

When it comes to commercial parking lot striping, Betz Works is here for you. Our expert team provides fast, professional services that will leave your company’s lot pristine. 

We service all of Santa Cruz, Monterey and Santa Clara Counties.

Contact us today to learn more about our services or request an estimate for your upcoming job.


1. How much does parking lot striping cost?

The cost of parking lot striping can vary widely depending on several factors, including the size of the lot, the number of parking spaces, the complexity of the layout, and the type of paint used.

On average, the cost to stripe a parking lot can range from $0.25-$1 per linear foot for freshly painted lines. Re-striping existing lines tends to be on the lower end of this range, while prices for new layouts may be higher due to additional planning and marking required.

Special markings for handicapped spaces, arrows, and custom logos may also increase the overall cost.

2. How long does it take to stripe a parking lot?

The duration to stripe a parking lot typically depends on several factors, including the size of the parking lot, the complexity of the layout, the condition of the surface, and weather conditions.

For a standard parking lot, re-striping can usually be completed in a single day, assuming optimal conditions and preparation.

However, if the project involves a new layout, extensive surface preparation, or custom markings, it may take several days.

Efficient planning and clear communication with the contractor will help ensure that the project is completed as quickly and smoothly as possible.

3. How long does it take for parking lot paint to dry?

The drying time for parking lot paint can vary significantly based on the type of paint used, the thickness of the application, and environmental conditions.

Water-based paints, commonly used for parking lot striping, typically dry to the touch within 30 minutes to an hour under ideal conditions (70°F with low humidity).

However, for the paint to fully cure and withstand vehicle traffic, a waiting period of at least 24 hours is often recommended. Oil-based paints may require a longer drying time, depending on specific product formulations and weather conditions.

It’s crucial to check the manufacturer’s specifications for the paint being used and consider local weather patterns when planning the striping project to ensure the best results and longevity of the markings.

4. How thick is parking striping?

The thickness of parking lot striping plays a pivotal role in both the visibility and durability of the markings. Standards for line thickness can vary, but the typical range for parking lot lines is about 4″ wide and 15″-18″ long.

This specification ensures that the stripes are visible enough to drivers and pedestrians to maintain safety and order within the parking lot while also providing a level of wear resistance suitable for the level of traffic most commercial lots receive.