Installing Asphalt Pavement: Due to its durability and cost-effectiveness, asphalt paving is a popular choice for driveways, parking lots, and roads. However, installing asphalt pavement requires careful planning and execution to ensure it lasts and looks great. In this blog post, we will discuss common mistakes people make when installing asphalt pavement and how to avoid them.
Introduction to Asphalt Paving
Asphalt pavement is made from aggregates, sand, and liquid asphalt cement. It is a flexible material that withstands heavy traffic and harsh weather conditions. Asphalt pavement can last up to 20 years without major repairs or replacement when installed correctly.
Common Mistakes When Installing Asphalt Pavement
1. Not preparing the subgrade: The subgrade is the layer of soil beneath the asphalt pavement. If the subgrade is not compacted correctly, it can cause the asphalt to crack and sink over time. To prevent this, remove all vegetation and debris from the area before compacting the soil.
2. Failing to install proper drainage: Water is one of the biggest enemies of asphalt pavement. Without adequate drainage, water can accumulate underneath the surface and cause it to weaken and crack. Install drains or slopes in the pavement to direct water away from the area.
3. Using low-quality materials: Cheap materials may seem like an excellent way to save money, but they can cost more in the long run. Low-quality asphalt mixes can result in uneven surfaces, cracks, and potholes. Always use high-quality materials to ensure a smooth and durable finish.
4. Ignoring climate considerations: Asphalt pavement needs to be able to expand and contract depending on temperature changes. If the pavement is too rigid, it can crack during extreme heat or cold periods. Consider using a flexible asphalt mix or adding expansion joints to accommodate these fluctuations.
The Difference Between Asphalt and Blacktop
While both asphalt and blacktop refer to paved surfaces, there is a difference between the two. Blacktop refers specifically to an asphalt mixed with tar rather than liquid cement. While blacktop was once a popular option for residential driveways, it is now less commonly used due to its tendency to crack and become brittle over time.
Installing asphalt pavement requires careful attention to detail and knowledge of best practices. By avoiding common mistakes such as improper subgrade preparation, failing to install proper drainage, using low-quality materials, and ignoring climate considerations, you can ensure that your asphalt pavement lasts long and looks great. Whether installing an asphalt driveway or a commercial parking lot, taking the time to do it right will pay off in the long run.