How Do I Handle Asphalt Paving?
Asphalt paving looks great, has a long lifespan, and can be applied quickly. We will teach about the top asphalt paving repair tactics. The average person doesn’t pay much attention to the material roads and their driveways are made of. Nor do they give much thought to the advantages one substance has over another. However, when applied properly, asphalt is far superior when it comes to drivability, appearance, price and its impact on the environment.
The Benefits of Asphalt
Asphalt has several environmental advantages that should be of interest to consumers. Some of the more popular ones are listed below:
Is Asphalt Recyclable?
Asphalt is 100% recyclable: No product undergoes recycling more than asphalt. Willie’s Paving recycles 100% of the asphalt it recovers from construction sites, as well as the concrete and asphalt shingles it removes. Not only is recycling asphalt good for the environment, but it also enhances the asphalt making it a better and stronger product. Recycled asphalt comes out stronger than its original form, making it longer-lasting and more rut resistant.
How Durable Is Asphalt?
Asphalt is durable and long-lasting: When applied correctly by an expert contractor, the lifespan of asphalt paving runs anywhere between 15-20 years. However, proper maintenance and regular upkeep can extend that life even further.
Does It Reduce Sound?
Asphalt reduces noise pollution: Asphalt, by its nature, is a quiet road substance. Rather than amplifying noise like sone materials, asphalt absorbs noise.
How Affordable Is Asphalt?
Asphalt is cost-effective: Generally speaking, asphalt is more cost-effective to apply when compared to concrete. However, the main ingredient in asphalt is crude oil, and since oil prices are so volatile, the price of asphalt can fluctuate along with the price of crude oil.
Duration of Project
Asphalt projects can be completed quicker: The basic materials needed for manufacturing asphalt are readily available and can be converted into asphalt relatively quickly.
How Do The Elementals Effect Asphalt?
Asphalt is an excellent conductor of water: Asphalt is well-known for its drainage properties. However, some types of asphalt do their job differently from others. For example, porous asphalt allows water to pass through it and return the excess water to the ground that way. Other less porous types work by conveying the excess water along a path and depositing it in a grassy area.
How Safe Is Asphalt?
Asphalt is safer: There are several ways asphalt promotes safety around your property. We have already mentioned its water managing abilities, which reduces the likelihood someone will skid on the slick surface and hurt themselves. Another one is its dark color, which means it absorbs more sunlight, causing snow and ice to melt more quickly.
What Are the Different Types of Asphalt?
Asphalt’s ingredients are easy to mix and can be customized to meet any asphalt need. A lot of asphalt paving companies have their own asphalt production plants, which improves their ability to provide for their customers’ needs. However, most asphalt mixes will fall under four categories:
- Porous Asphalt: Porous asphalt is an environmentally-safe paving solution for all your paving projects. It is also rated by the EPA as the best paving technique, and choosing it for your next paving project can earn you valuable tax credits.
It earned the name porous because of its water management abilities. This type of asphalt has millions of tiny holes that allow water to seep through and re-enter the groundwater. This allows drainage water to undergo the natural recycling process.
- Cold-mix asphalt: Cold-mix asphalt helps repel water in cold temperatures by remaining permeable even when the temperature drops. This type of asphalt mixture is primarily used in the repair of potholes. The production process for cold mix asphalt is fairly simple, so it can be made available at any time.
- Hot-mix asphalt: Hot-mix asphalt (HMA) is so-called because it is produced at temperatures ranging between 300 and 350 degrees Fahrenheit. This is the most common form of asphalt mix.
Now, HMA itself can be broken down into three more categories: Dense-grade, stone matrix, and open grade asphalt mixes. The dense grade is classified according to the size of the aggregates in the asphalt mix and is broken down into two more classifications: Fine grade and coarse grade mixes. A fine grade and dense grade contain higher sand and small stones content than coarse grade mixes. These types of mixes are used in the paving of high-volume roads and interstates.
- Warm asphalt mix: Warm asphalt mix is produced at temperatures ranging from 200-250 degrees Fahrenheit. WMA uses fewer fossil fuels in its production than HMA, but the process requires the infusion of more binding agents to facilitate pouring and spreading at lower temperatures. WMA also cos less than HMA.
- Coarse grade asphalt mix: Coarse grade asphalt mix is normally used to form a base or foundation to lend support to the fine grade dense mixes, which are used to cover ramps, driveways and parking lots.
Types of Asphalt Damage
Most of the damage that asphalt sustains can be easily avoided through proper installation and regular maintenance. When your asphalt does show signs of damage, it is a good idea to have it attended to right away, as it will probably be cheaper and quicker to fix.
Sometimes referred to as fatigue cracking, alligator cracking occurs when the weight is too much for it to bear. It could also mean that the asphalt was poured too thin, or that the base was laid down improperly.
Slippage cracks can form when the asphalt mix was either too weak, or the bond between the two layers was insufficient. Slippage cracks are distinguishable from other cracks because they bear a striking resemblance to stretch marks.
Edge cracks earned their name because they form along the perimeter of the asphalt. Vegetation growth and lack of support along the edges are the usual culprits for this type of damage.
Block cracking occurs in the form of a series of interconnected blocks. They are caused by the constant shrinking and expanding of the asphalt that accompanies drastic temperature variations. This happens when the mix was too dry when it was laid down.
Longitudinal cracking occurs when the longitudinal joint was not laid down properly. They usually run parallel to the centerline.
Unlike longitudinal cracking, transverse cracking forms perpendicular to the centerline. They are usually caused by a substandard base layer.
Potholes are usually caused by the wear and tear it receives from the pounding it takes from automobile traffic, aided by the beating it receives from the weather. They usually appear in early spring or late winter, caused by the alternating warming and freezing of the water that seeps into the mix. If water makes its way into the asphalt base, it can severely damage its integrity. Regular maintenance is required to minimize the possibility of this type of damage.
Depressions differ from potholes in that they are simply low spots in the pavement and not holes. Depressions can serve as receptacles for water, which can lead to even more damage.
A base failure can be caused by poor drainage, uneven weight loads, insufficient support material, or poor application. A base failure requires that the entire surface layer be removed.
Stripping occurs when the binding material and the aggregate are too weak, causing the pavement to breakdown. The pavement will quickly become riddled with cracks when this occurs.
Repair Options for Asphalt
Crack sealing is done by injecting a super-heated sealant into the cracks to prevent further damage from rainwater. The sealant sticks to the asphalt forming an impenetrable bond that keeps water and vegetation from exploiting weaknesses in the pavement.
Unfortunately, most people delay this process to their detriment. The cracking will only get worse over time. So, what appeared like tiny little cracks at first, can grow to become alligator cracks, or even worse, turn into a pothole, severely compromising the roadway.
Seal coating protects the surface from external threats like fuel, water, oils, weather, and traffic. It is a preventative measure that can be applied quickly and easily. It is recommended that the application be repeated every 3-5 years and that during the warmer months for best results.
Sealcoating is usually applied to the older pavement to help prolong the life of the surface.
Sealcoating leaves your paved surface looking sleek and darken. It is the perfect remedy for improving aesthetics while protecting the integrity of your pavement.
Some of the Benefits of Sealcoating
- Prolongs the lifespan of the pavement
- Accelerates the melting of ice and snow
- Reduces repair costs
- Protects against from water, oil, chemical spills, and oxidation
- Adds to the beauty of the property
Milling involves removing the top layer of asphalt without disturbing the base. This option is chosen when the base is still functioning properly, but the top layer of asphalt has begun to deteriorate.
Milling costs a fraction of a complete reconstruction of the paved surface, as only the top layer needs to be removed. This process only takes a relatively short period to complete.
The Benefits of Milling
- It is cost-effective
- Can be completely
- Discarded material can be recycled
Simply put, patching is pothole repair. There may be some variations, but the process usually follows these 5 steps:
Removal of the damaged material: the tools used in this procedure can vary depending on the size of the job.
Cleaning the area to be repaired: all loose material should be removed, including any vegetation.
Repairing the foundation: Asphalt surfaces require a solid foundation, or you’ll end up with more problems.
Filling the pothole: The type of asphalt used to fill the pothole can vary depending on the weather and size of the pothole. Hot or cold mix asphalt is usually used for this type of repair work.
Tamping: The practice is to overfill the pothole and then tamp it down. The tool used for this job varies depending on the size of the pothole.
Overlay involves repairing a large section of damaged asphalt. This process is undertaken when the surface begins showing signs of damage, but the resurfacing of the entire roadway is not required.
New Asphalt Installation
As the name implies, a new installation involves starting a asphalt paving project from scratch and usually follow these steps:
Demolition and removal: Removal of surface material and disposing of it.
Grading and sloping: Before beginning the asphalt paving process, the surface must be graded (1) to make it receptive to the asphalt (2) to facilitate proper drainage.
Preparing the sub-base: This will be the weight-bearing layer underneath the asphalt
Applying the binder layer: The binder layer consists of a large mix mixed with oil to make it strong and durable. Once this step is complete, it is time to apply the asphalt.
- Apply the new asphalt layer
- Smooth and compact the asphalt layer
Sometimes a proof roll is required to test to see if the underlying surface is strong enough to support the new asphalt roadway. If not, a process called undercutting is used. This process involves removing about 2-3 feet of the soft soil and replacing it with a stronger aggregate material.