Asphalt Paving 101: Everything You Need to Know
Asphalt paving is a process that can create various surfaces, from roads and parking lots to playgrounds and bike trails. It’s been used for centuries, and the process has evolved over time to become more efficient and durable. But there are a few things you need to know before you decide. This article will discuss everything you need to know about asphalt paving, from the benefits to the cost. So read on for all the information you need to make an informed decision.
Benefits of asphalt paving:
Durable and long-lasting
Asphalt is one of the most durable and long-lasting materials available for paving. It can withstand heavy traffic, inclement weather, and environmental factors like salt, water, and the sun. Well-maintained asphalt pavement can last for decades with no major issues.
Compared to other paving materials like concrete or brick pavers, asphalt is much more affordable. This makes it a great option for budget-conscious homeowners and businesses alike. And while upfront costs are lower with asphalt paving, you will save money in the long run due to its durability and longevity.
The asphalt paving experts from ABC paving & sealcoating agree that asphalt pavements are also relatively easy to maintain compared to other surfaces. Simple tasks like sweeping away dirt and debris or filling small cracks with a special epoxy can keep your asphalt surface looking great for years.
Versatile and customizable
Asphalt is also incredibly versatile and can be used to create a range of surfaces, from roads, walkways, and parking lots to playgrounds and bike trails. This means you can use it for functional areas like driveways or more decorative purposes like patios or courtyards. And thanks to the variety of colours available with asphalt materials, you can customize the appearance of your pavement in any number of ways.
Less noise pollution
Asphalt pavements are also known for their sound-reducing properties. This makes them an excellent choice for residential areas where noise pollution is a concern.
How much does asphalt paving cost?
The cost of asphalt paving varies depending on several factors, including the size and scope of the project, the type of asphalt material used, the climate, and the contractor you hire. However, you can expect to pay anywhere from $2 to $6 per square foot for a basic asphalt driveway. For more complex projects like highways or parking lots, costs can range from $5 to $15 per square foot.
To get an accurate estimate of how much your project will cost, it’s best to consult with a professional contractor. They will be able to give you a more detailed quote based on the specific needs of your project.
What are the steps involved in asphalt paving?
- The first step in asphalt paving is to remove any existing pavement or vegetation from the area where you’ll be working. This may require the use of heavy equipment like jackhammers or bulldozers.
- Once the area is cleared, a base layer of gravel is spread over the entire surface and compacted with a roller.
- The next step is to heat the asphalt material until it’s malleable enough to work with. This usually requires special equipment like an asphalt paver or heater.
- Once the asphalt is heated, it’s placed over the gravel base and smoothed out with a tamper or roller.
- Finally, the asphalt is cooled and left to harden overnight before it can be used.
Please note that asphalt paving needs to cure or set for at least 24 hours before it can be used. However, it’s best to wait 48 hours before driving or walking on the surface. This will give the material time to fully harden and bond with the underlying gravel base.
How should I care for my asphalt pavement?
There are a few simple steps you can take to prolong the life of your asphalt pavement.
Clean your asphalt pavement regularly
One of the best ways to care for your asphalt is to keep it clean. This means sweeping away dirt, debris, and leaves regularly. You should also hose down your pavement from time to time to remove any built-up grime or oil.
Fill cracks and holes promptly
It’s also essential to fill any cracks or holes in your pavement as soon as you notice them. This will help prevent water from seeping into the surface and causing further damage. You can use a special epoxy or asphalt patching compound to fill small cracks and holes. For larger cracks, you may need to call in a professional contractor.
Sealcoat your pavement every few years
You should have your pavement sealcoated every two to three years. This will help protect the surface from the elements and prevent it from cracking or deteriorating over time. You can do this yourself with a special sealcoating kit or hire a professional contractor to do it for you.
Maintain good drainage
Another important aspect of caring for your asphalt pavement is ensuring that water can drain away from the surface. If water pools on your pavement for too long, it can cause the surface to crack or deteriorate. This means ensuring that your gutters and downspouts are clear of debris and that your grading slopes away from the house.
Use safe de-icing products
Finally, be careful about what products you use to de-ice your pavement in the winter. Some de-icers can be harmful to asphalt, so it’s important to choose a safe product for use on pavement. One of the best options is calcium chloride, which effectively won’t damage your pavement.
As you can see, asphalt paving is a complex process that requires careful planning and skilled workmanship. If you’re thinking about having an asphalt pavement installed on your property, it’s important to consult with a professional contractor who has experience with this type of project. Not only will they be able to give you an accurate estimate of the costs involved, but they’ll also be able to help ensure that your pavement is properly installed and cared for over the years. With proper maintenance and care, your new asphalt driveway or parking lot should last for many years to come.