Q&A: Asphalt Paving & Repair for You City or Town
Sometimes we take for granted the condition of our roads and parking lots. When they aren't up to scratch, it affects the quality of driving and can damage cars. It's the last thing you want to think about if you are in charge of maintaining public and commercial roadways.
Not everyone is familiar with the maintenance and protocol for asphalt repair and replacement. It can be tricky to sift through the vast information and decide which applies to your situation. That's where Roadbuilders comes in. We've worked on many municipal parking lots and roadways over the years and have compiled a list of the most common questions we've been asked.
When should I consider repairing my asphalt?
Getting the most out of your repair should start somewhere around 2/3 way through your parking lot or road's lifespan. The American Concrete Pavement Association (ACPA) says as an example "a 20-year pavement should undergo preservation within 12 to 15 years."
Ask yourself what your goals are for the asphalt, and you can determine what you need. You can better plan for the future if you understand the characteristics of pavement and how they would affect the way they want their municipal, state, or commercial asphalt paving to work.
What paving options do I have?
Paving public roadways and parking lots should be completed by professionals who understand how the properties interact with end use. These areas receive higher levels of traffic than residential or privately owned property. There are a few you can choose from:
Developed in the 60s, the composite is made from aggregate and a modified asphalt binder. It is great for heavy traffic roads because it's rut resistant. If you’re interested in reducing noise pollution, the use of stone-matrix asphalt is a superior choice.
Perpetual pavement is multiple layers of durable asphalt with a strong subsurface. This subsurface resists a lot of strain from traffic and is great for municipal roads and parking lots. The construction is continued by a structural intermediate layer and rut resistant surface layer.
Developed for city planning, porous asphalt is the king of drainage. The subsurface is built 18 to 36 inches in depth. The surface material allows for the water to penetrate and move towards the subsurface. But, because of its depth water rarely reaches the top reducing the chances of cracks forming.
Open-Graded Friction Course
Used only as a surface material, open-graded friction course reduces noise pollution and splash/spray from heavy rain. Because of this attribute, it's safer to drive and maintains a smoother surface.
Is asphalt paving environmentally-friendly?
Asphalt paving conserves energy, protects water quality, and is fully recyclable making asphalt an eco-friendly paving material. In fact, the paving industry has been environmentally friendly for decades, and most municipal roadways and parking lots are repaired, resurfaced, and replaced using recycled aggregate.
Interested in using eco-friendly paving options?
Are there preventative steps I can take to prolong the lifespan of my municipal paving?
Some of the best preventative measures start with the surface. Think about having cracks filled when they become about as wide as they are deep. Cracks allow water and other debris to penetrate the subsurface which is the primary support system for the asphalt. Filling cracks will clean and remove dirt and as well as prevent them from spreading. Sealcoating is another measure that can be taken to maintain integrity. The sealcoat applies a thin layer that acts as a barrier between the pavement and external sources like mother nature or debris.
Can perma-paving work on my public roadway?
Perma-paving is a process that targets blemishes and other issues at their source. It allows property owners the option to repair their pavement without the need to put down a new one. Carrying the weight of heavy traffic and withstanding the friction from tires, parking lots and roadways from commercial properties can deteriorate quickly. Perma-paving can rectify flaws to add years to your asphalt's lifespan.
What are common issues I will experience with my road or parking lot?
As long as the original pavement was installed correctly, you should have limited experience with imperfections. The first issue that will occur from regular use would be a crack. Cracks are blemishes on the surface. It's a result in the composite material splitting due to UV exposure, rising and falling of temperatures, heavy traffic, or friction. Cracks that spread quickly across the surface are not from regular use and instead form when the asphalt wasn't correctly laid.
Potholes are another concern. They materialize when the cracks on the surface haven't been repaired or if there is standing water, heat and humidity. Not fixing a pothole could damage a vehicle and hold you responsible for any damages.
How do I choose the right paver for the job?
Working with someone who has experience in municipal roads and parking lots will prolong the lifespan of your pavement. Repairing and replacing costs money and could cause temporary roadblocks and driving restrictions. Hire a paver with years of experience, and you can rest assured that the job will be done correctly the first time.
If you need a road, parking lot, or commercial driveway repaired or replaced contact Roadbuilders. We have over 20 years of experience working with asphalt and understand its behavior traits to ensure the job is done correctly