From roads to parking lots and park pathways, there are lots of examples of asphalt all over the place. Some of these old patches of asphalt may last for decades, while other newer ones may only last for a couple of years before they fall into disrepair. There are a lot of factors that determine the lifespan of asphalt, including weather, traffic volume, and the level of maintenance as well as the quality of the initial installation. Generally speaking, properly installed asphalt that receives regular maintenance can last around 20 years. Below we have listed a few ways you can ensure your asphalt remains intact for an extended period of time.
Seal the Cracks
One of the main culprits that cause premature deterioration of asphalt happens to be moisture. This is especially true for asphalt surfaces located in places like Vancouver or BC’s lower mainland where frequent precipitation and fluctuating seasonal temperatures contribute to asphalt damage. As water seeps into cracks in the asphalt is causes the surface to shift away from the aggregate asphalt base. This process is accelerated during the winter when moisture freezes. The freezing process causes water to expand and contract, adding to the deterioration of the upper surface. When this occurs in high traffic areas, minor cracks can quickly turn into large potholes which will need to be filled. By remaining proactive and having cracks in your asphalt regularly sealed by experienced professionals, you can enhance the lifespan of your asphalt by a significant margin.
Another factor that impacts the lifespan of any asphalt surface is the amount of traffic that rolls over the surface. You may notice that busy parking lots seem to require more maintenance than a lightly travelled road or pathway. Additionally, the scale of vehicles that run over the asphalt will also affect its lifespan. If large trucks frequently travel over an asphalt surface, the area will likely require an above-average amount of maintenance. In these instances, it is important to allow sufficient time for the asphalt to seal and set after repairs are completed. This usually means keeping all traffic off the asphalt for at least 24 hours after repairs. If vehicles are allowed to drive on the surface before the 24 hour period has ended, you increase the likelihood for premature deterioration of your new asphalt surface.
A well built and designed asphalt surface should be able to last for decades so long as it receives proper maintenance and care. That means property owners must remain vigilant when on the lookout for potential issues like cracks. If a surface isn’t properly maintained, you’ll be lucky to get five solid years out of it before it starts to fall apart. For more helpful tips or to learn about the top quality paving and asphalt maintenance services available at Pacific Coast Paving, be sure to contact us for a free estimate today!