Protecting your asphalt investment from deterioration is the key to keeping an attractive looking parking lot or driveway. Sealcoating new asphalt within one year of installation is the best and most cost efficient way to avoid expensive repairs due to pavement failures. However, let’s take a look at some common asphalt problems and their solutions:
Oxidation and Graying
Over time, traffic, water, gas, oil, the suns unrelenting rays, especially in Florida, will wreak havoc on asphalt pavement. The older the pavement gets, the more exposure to elements, the more the asphalt pavement will fade and takes on a gray appearance. This graying is a sign that the asphalt is oxidizing and drying out. The drier it gets the more brittle it will become and the more prone to cracking. It’s a downward spiral at this point if nothing is done to stop the water from penetrating the asphalt cracks. It is critical that asphalt repairs are made as part of an ongoing asphalt pavement maintenance plan to avoid further decay.
Another asphalt paving maintenance issue to be aware of is raveling. When the binder, which acts as a glue, that is used to hold the stone and sand particles that make up the asphalt starts deteriorating, this is called raveling. Pieces of aggregate will loosen and breakaway from the pavement surface making it thinner and thinner as it deteriorates.
The surface of the asphalt pavement will appear rough as pieces of the asphalt away and separate. This can create a void for water to penetrate into the base material.
Linear Asphalt Cracks
Transverse and longitudinal cracks are fairly common in asphalt pavement as it ages. Starting small, they will expand over time. Again, any crack in asphalt is an opportunity for water to penetrate. Pavement expansion due to hot and cold temperatures will continue to cause the cracks to expand.
Cleaning out any dirt or debris from such cracks, asphalt repairs can be made to stop water from seeping below the pavement and help stop the crack from growing.
Sealcoating the pavement early on helps lock-in the binder and prevents from cracks from occurring.
If cracks, gaps or joints in asphalt are left unfilled, grass, weeds and other plants – even trees have been known to grow right through a parking lots surface. Not only does this make for an un-kept looking parking area, but the roots of the vegetation can cause severe damage to the base of the asphalt. Additionally, as the plant grows, the roots and the visible vegetation will widen the gaps letting more water penetrate the surface eroding the base materials. A simple asphalt crack repair before vegetation has a chance to take root can save property managers thousands of dollars in repairs or replacement.
About ABC Paving and Sealcoating
http://pavingandsealcoating.com or call 866-934-7623 for a free estimate.