Asphalt is among the most used paving materials across America. It is ideal for driveways, parking lots, walkways, and even road paving.
When you take care of your new asphalt paving, it takes care of you by being beautiful and functional for more than 20 years. If you neglect it, you’re looking at a six years life expectancy.
So, how do you care for it? By performing regular maintenance and protecting it from the elements.
Let’s check out some of the ways to care for a new-laid asphalt pavement
- Give your new asphalt time to cure
Though you can drive on asphalt pavement 24 hours after installation, the maximum time it takes to cure fully is a year.
This doesn’t mean you won’t have to use it for a year, but you can take precautions to avoid abuse for that first year by;
- Restricting/monitoring the weight of vehicles on it
- And make sure it is being driven on slowly
- Take care of fuel and oil spills immediately
Oil and fuel spills can do severe damage to asphalt, fresh or not. They break down the binder holding asphalt pavement together and weaken the asphalt structure. Such damage may prove irreparable.
So, make sure to clean any fuel or oil spills the moment you spot them.
- Slow down
Another enemy of fresh-laid asphalt is speed. Move at a slower pace when you’re driving on a newly paved surface.
- Remove snow and ice
During the curing phase of asphalt, water is an enemy. Due to the porous surface of the asphalt, water may pass through, and it freeze inside the asphalt.
This can be a big problem because when water freezes, it expands, and the pressure build-up below the pavement can cause potholes or large cracks to form on the surface.
So, ensure you use some form of ice melting product on your pavement to prevent this.
When your asphalt has fully cured, consider seal coating; it stops penetration of moisture and extends the life of the asphalt.
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