Asphalt is an environmentally friendly and low-maintenance paving option, but that doesn’t mean it won’t sustain damage — especially when it comes to Mother Nature. The rainy season is around the corner, and you need to start preparing now for water damage and understand how it can impact your asphalt paving.
Puddles of water aren’t typical and shouldn’t be ignored. Standing water can lead to far more serious issues. Here’s how you know there’s damage being done to your asphalt paving:
- Bleeding: This happens when the asphalt binder comes to the surface and creates a shiny film on the pavement. It’s not a good look, but even worse it can cause loss of traction and increase the chance of hydroplaning.
- Rutting: Travel paths can leave grooves or indentation in your asphalt, which can go on to collect water and make those grooves deeper and more dangerous. Ruts can prevent drivers from steering or stopping safely.
- Raveling: Standing water can reach deep into the asphalt and cause the binder and aggregate to disintegrate. The top layers of asphalt can cause loose debris to create a rough surface that will diminish skid resistance and doesn’t look attractive.
- Foundation deterioration: If it’s not dealt with quickly, standing water can seep down to the foundation of your asphalt surface and lead to deeper alligator cracks, potholes, sinkholes, and low spots.
While you certainly can’t control the weather, there are a few ways you can prevent or repair water damage, starting with choosing a quality contractor. When asphalt paving is done right the first time, it can withstand far more water damage and require less repair. Start by doing your research, asking around for referrals, and seeing local projects for yourself to understand what quality paving looks like. We’ve compiled a great list of “should-ask” questions you need to have answered before making your choice; check it out here.
Think about these factors, too:
Integrating a well-designed drainage system will go a long way towards redirecting the flow of water so it doesn’t puddle or pool on your asphalt pavement. Take a look at your parking lot after a period of heavy rain; you’ll know where to install drainage if there is water collecting. Working with a contractor helps you control the slope of the pavement to allow that water to drain away.
This is a popular method of asphalt pavement protection. Not only does proper sealcoating by a qualified contractor help prevent water from seeping into your asphalt, but it can also act as a barrier to UV rays and fluids (like oil and transmission leaks) from vehicles that will lead to degradation. While sealcoating won’t fix any cracks or potholes, it will maintain the current condition of your pavement, and it’s suggested you have this performed every 3 to 5 years.
Natural oxidation can lead to small cracks in your pavement over time, and while they may not seem like a big deal, they can lead to big issues. These cracks allow more water to seep into your pavement and weaken the base, leaving you stuck in a vicious cycle of damage. Have small cracks filled as you notice them to create a barrier and stop this cycle from continuing.
If your asphalt paving is in generally good condition aside from a few potholes, it’s time to call a contractor to repair them. These areas need to be dug up at the base, replaced with fresh asphalt, and compacted again in order to be repaired. Don’t overlook this line item in your annual facility maintenance repair budget.
Regular inspection & maintenance
Stop minor damage in its tracks by calling your contractor out on a regular basis. An experienced eye can inspect your pavement closely and identify issues, along with working closely with you to determine the best ways to maintain anything they see as a problem. This is especially important after periods of extreme weather and heavy rainfall.
When you use Leritz Busy Bee for asphalt maintenance and repair, you’re going to be working with a commercial asphalt paving team that creates a plan custom-tailored for your property. From a new-construction pavement project that helps prevent water damage to maintenance or repair, count on us to help. Smooth and stable pavement will help your property hold its value, offer great curb appeal, and, most importantly, help create a safe parking lot for visitors to drive on. Connect with us now to schedule a free consultation.