Asphalt is affordable, durable, and may be used for various applications in construction. It is popular as a paving material since it succeeds in protecting car tires and giving your driveway a smooth, stylish finish. Though it is durable, this material is not impervious to damage.
Here are some reasons your pavement would crack and how you could prevent them:
It is exposed to extreme heat or UV radiation
Heat can soften, pit, and deform your paving, causing large chunks of it to slough off under heavy loads. It can also bruise the pavement, and the sun’s UV rays can oxidize the oil in this material, degrading its capacity to glue the asphalt rocks together.
When it is hot outside, keep heavy vehicles from sitting in one spot for a long time. Avoid using automotive jacks or other tools that can dent this material. You should also schedule your pavement for resealing, preferably once every five or six years.
It is exposed to water or extreme cold
Aside from extreme heat, you shouldn’t expose this material to extreme cold either. Since this material is more malleable than concrete, it is more susceptible to becoming brittle due to cold weather. Likewise, asphalt becomes ineffective when exposed to standing or groundwater.
Brush off puddles whenever they form on your paved driveway, and contact professionals if you suspect that you have a groundwater issue. You can also take the same precautions you do for hot weather, like refraining from putting heavy loads on the paving, especially along the edges, where the material is likely to break off.
It has trees and roots underneath
Roots are always growing and developing underground, and you might have no issues with these for years but suddenly have cracks all at once. It’s hard to prevent damage from trees and roots, but you could consider removing or replanting the ones causing serious damage. At the very least, sever the roots that are directly impeding access to or safety on your driveway.
It is constantly subjected to heavy loads
The asphalt you would normally get for commercial parking lots is least six inches thick, while the one for residential areas is up to four inches thick. For the most part, this material can handle vehicles parked for long periods of time. However, making it carry heavy loads might lead to cracks and damage soon enough. If it is possible, avoid extreme weight on your driveway, especially along the borders.
It has chemical stains and lacks seal coating
Diesel stains can contribute to the degradation of your asphalt paving. If you have a leaking vehicle, try to put an oil catch under it or move it to a surface that is less prone to cracking. If you discover a fresh stain on your driveway, you can apply cat litter on top of it to absorb the worst of the spill before cleaning the rest with dish detergent.
You can prevent cracks and damage by using preventive maintenance measures like seal coating. Asphalt that is not regularly cleaned and sealed will definitely show signs of wear.
A paved driveway completes the exterior look of a home. When choosing a material for paving your space, you could go with something malleable and affordable like asphalt. With proper care and maintenance, you can have a smooth, beautiful driveway for many years to come.
If you’re looking for paving companies in Monmouth County, NJ, contact us at Dan the Paver today. We have more than 25 years of experience in driveway paving, parking lot paving, and more. Call us today for your free estimate!