Keeping Asphalt in Good Condition

top parking

Asphalt is commonly used for commercial construction of roads, parking lots, walkways, docks and loading zones. Though asphalt can last for many years, there are several things that contribute to its disrepair.  These include impact from heavy loads, traffic from heavy commercial equipment and vehicles, poor drainage, use of poor construction material, poor workmanship, weak foundation, extreme heat and extreme cold.

In order to maintain the appearance of asphalt, there are several things that should be done during construction. They include:

1. The foundation should be adequate when building.

The strength of a foundation depends on how solid the subgrade is. If the soil at the construction site is wet, loose or soggy, it will not provide enough stability. To prevent the foundation from collapsing, the contractors have to stabilize the subgrade by removing wet, loose or soggy soil and replacing it with stone. If this is not done, the asphalt could buckle under the weight of vehicles, loads and human traffic.

2. Use of proper drainage to prevent flooding and moisture accumulation

Asphalt should be supported by a drainage system that has enough slope to drive water away from the surface and subgrade.

3. The construction should not use substandard or less-than-enough material

The asphalt mix should be the right consistency and quality. Contractors who own hot mix plants can mix asphalt to a consistency that is suited for any type of project. The material used for one asphalt project may be inadequate for another. For instance, the mix used for highways may not be suited for a loading zone.

4. Only hire good workmen to construct using asphalt to ensure good design and solid construction.

Good workmanship guarantees the durability of asphalt construction. It’s critical to ensure compaction, even at pavement joints and edges. Good workmen will use proper technique and ensure good use of material. If inexperienced workmen perform the construction, asphalt is more likely to get potholes, cracks, or experience other problems.

5. Maintenance should be done on schedule and in a timely manner

In addition to ensuring a high quality construction job, it’s important to put emphasis on maintenance. Proper maintenance involves ensuring drainage features are performing as they should, filling cracks and holes, and sealing to prevent water from seeping into the pavement.  Only experienced contractors should be allowed to perform repairs and maintenance on commercial constructions made with asphalt.