Now that businesses are reopening in full force, you may find yourself with an ever-growing list of maintenance projects, and chances are asphalt repairs probably aren’t appearing very high on your to-dos. However, undertaking asphalt repairs has several benefits beyond just aesthetics, and if you have been putting off asphalt repairs, here are five reasons it’s time to stop.
Not All Asphalt Cracks Are Cosmetic
At the surface, most asphalt cracks look virtually indistinguishable. However, there are numerous underlying causes of asphalt damage, and some may be signals of issues that need immediate attention.
Fixing shrinkage cracks are the most common kind of asphalt repair. In fact, they are so common; they are almost inevitable. Shrinkage cracks appear when unsealed asphalt is left exposed to the elements. Most businesses will find themselves in need of shrinkage crack repairs at some point. But while shrinkage cracks are common, steps can be taken to help prolong the life of your asphalt and mitigate future damage.
An asphalt seal coat is a protective layer applied over top of your asphalt. The seal coat helps protect against damage and extends the life of your asphalt. It’s recommended to have your seal coating reapplied every two years for the best results.
Sometimes referred to as alligator cracks or stress cracks, fatigue cracks appear as a series of small interconnected cracks at the surface of your asphalt. Fatigue cracks can occur due to structural issues with the internal foundation of your asphalt, but are typically the result of load-related deterioration due to heavy, continuous traffic, insufficient pavement thickness, overloading, or a combination of multiple factors.
When fresh asphalt is overlayed over damaged or cracked asphalt without adequate depth or substrate, reflection cracking can occur. Refection cracks form due to the movement, such as rising, expanding, and contracting, of the old pavement or concrete.
Edge cracking is cracking which forms around the edges of parking lots, where the parking lot meets the curb or drops off. These longitudinal cracks can extend up to 2 feet from the edge and are most commonly a result of insufficient support.
Asphalt Repairs Benefits
Now that you understand a few of the more common types of cracking, you may still be wondering why repairing this damage is so important. There are obvious reasons,such as cracked asphalt simply looks unkempt and unprofessional; however, there are other issues at play.
Repairing Cracks Helps Reduce Water Infiltration
Cracks open your asphalt up to water infiltration, which can cause severe asphalt deterioration requiring costly repairs. Left unchecked, cracks can eventually lead to structural issues with your pavement, which may be irreparable.
A small crack today can turn into a large crack very quickly, and eventually internal damage to your pavement. What could quickly be repaired today with a filler or sealer may require repaving in the future.
Cracks lead to water infiltration, which leads to potholes, and that leads to unhappy customers. Repairing asphalt cracks promptly, before they become more complex issues, will save you time and money in the long run.
Extends the Life of Your Pavement
Maintenance is the key to longevity; if you want your pavement to last, you need to take care of it, and that includes fixing asphalt cracking. A little maintenance every few years could enable your pavement to last 20+ years without significant issues.
Prevents the Need to Remove and Repave Your Parking Lot
Completely removing damaged asphalt and repaving is one of the most expensive parking lot repairs and the thing property owners dread. Fortunately, it is also completely avoidable with prompt repairs and regular maintenance.
Asphalt repairs benefits are numerous, so take care of your asphalt issues sooner rather than later.