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Asphalt is a superior pavement option to concrete, specifically for driveways and parking lots. And while this material is durable and resilient, it can incur expensive and inconvenient damages. But what could cause asphalt to crack? Read on to learn more about the three main culprits for poor asphalt conditions.
The biggest cause of asphalt cracks and general damage is moisture retention. An excess of water within asphalt deteriorates the material and leads to shifting. This movement eventually results in cracks and potholes.
Failing to fix these damages will result in a progressively worse issue, leaving your driveway or parking lot functionless. Luckily, asphalt holds significantly less moisture than concrete, making it the superior pavement option. Remove your concrete base before installing asphalt to increase your pavement’s drainage efficiency.
When it comes to causes of asphalt damage, temperature change is often the main culprit. Mainly, it can exasperate other causes, such as moisture retention. Now, this isn’t to say that asphalt is vulnerable to extreme weather. In truth, asphalt is very resilient and durable.
However, sudden temperature changes greatly impact asphalt conditions. Water that seeps into your pavement can freeze during cold fronts, which expands and pushes out chunks of asphalt—this is usually how potholes are formed. Sudden bouts of intense heat can expand asphalt and cause it to retain too much moisture and crack.
We mentioned this briefly, but asphalt cracking is a progressive problem. Damages get worse at a faster rate the longer these issues are left alone. So, driveways and parking lots already in bad condition are more likely to crack than seal-coated, well-maintained surfaces.
Sealcoating is a form of maintenance repair that involves applying asphalt sealer over an asphalt driveway or parking lot, ensuring better protection against temperature changes and moisture retention. Use asphalt crack filling equipment to even out any damages and fix cracks before seal coating. These practices ensure your asphalt’s condition is optimal for handling hazards.
Understanding what causes asphalt cracks and damages is essential, especially for asphalt maintenance businesses. This knowledge can better educate you on the best methods for repairing poor-condition driveways and parking lots.
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