How is Asphalt Maintenance Done? When it comes to asphalt maintenance, there are four important aspects to consider. Water penetrating into the asphalt base is the main cause why asphalt begins to fail. When asphalt has been there for a long time it tends to get brittle and dry and will soon begin to crack, and these cracks makes way for water to penetrate and reach the base of the pavement. The base material will then move and settle when water seeps into the cracks. The surface of the pavement will then show a grid-like cracking. Replacing the old asphalt or patch repairing it are the two options you can take when your pavement begins to crack. Isolated areas of the pavement are dealt with in patch repair. With a back hoe and saw-cutting, you can remove a portion of the pavement. You can also use a grinding machine for this purpose. When the old asphalt is removed, it is then replaced with new asphalt. Whatever method of removal you use will determine the amount that is removed. The depth of removal should be one and a half times the original thickness of the asphalt. You should replace the base sock so that it matches the adjacent areas to allow for a uniform base support. You should extend the amount of removal up to a foot past the area that has failed. The maintenance method using asphalt overly is one that is affordable and provides a new wearing surface. There are certain factors that one needs to be aware of when dealing with asphalt overlay. The overlay should have a maximum thickness of 2.5 inches and a minimum of 1.5 inches. If you are going to grind down the existing pavement, do not do it on the overlay section to match the existing structure. The overlay strength could be weakened if you do this. They will grind the existing pavement down to where they meet flush together to prevent this.
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Inlaying and pulverizing in place is another aspect of asphalt maintenance. A milling machine is used to accomplish this. A depth of existing asphalt is removed during the inlay process. This is many times a previous overlay. The contractors will then put the asphalt back to the pre-inlay elevation. When the method of pulverize in place is used, the asphalt will be pulverized to as small as base rock sized particles.
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Seal coating is an important part of extending the life of asphalt and it should not be overlooked. Seal coating is a mixture of mineral fibers, emulsified asphalt, and water along with other admixtures. This will seal the top layer of the asphalt to prevent water from penetrating the pavement surface and protecting the top layer from wear from sun exposure and oxidation. This gives the asphalt its even black coating.