There are many issues that inflict roads, and among the most common problems include potholes. Areas of road surface that have cracked, worn away, and eventually formed a hole are known as a pothole. Usually, potholes begin as tiny cracks and when they are not fixed right away, they grow bigger, and eventually into potholes. They can grow from anywhere between a few inches wide and deep to a few feet wide and several inches deep. With this in mind, we at Andersen Asphalt & Striping would like to further elaborate on potholes.
Where Did the Pothole Originate?
After the water has entered into the ground under the pavement, potholes are caused by the expansion and contraction of ground water. It expands when water freezes. It will take up more space under the pavement if it has a chance to freeze and the pavement will bend, expand, and crack, which weakens the pavement. Where water can get in and be trapped, the pavement contracts and leaves gaps or voids in the surface under the pavement, when the ice melts. The pavement will weaken and continue cracking if the water freezes and thaws over and over. Pieces of the roadway material weaken as the weight of cars and trucks pass over the weak spot in the road, which creates the pothole from the material to be displaced or broken down from the weight.
How Can Potholes Be Repaired & Prevented?
It is always better to have a proactive rather than reactive approach to dealing with potholes and such methods includes sealcoating your asphalt parking lot every two to three years to prevent damages.
Crack Sealing. While being able to move with the pavement as it expands and contract, crack sealing uses specialized materials that when heated bond to the walls of the crack, which prevents intrusion of water and debris into the crack.
Sealcoating. To keep out damaging UV rays, vehicle fluids and water, sealcoating protects and extends the life expectancy of your asphalt driveway or parking lot by providing a protective layer.
Pothole Cold Patch Repair. It is still effective enough to last you a long time, though this is a temporary solution for repairing potholes. When the asphalt plants are not producing hot mix asphalt, this method should only be used during the time of year, typically December through March/April, ideally. There are three simple steps to installing cold patch:
1) All loose debris from pothole, is thoroughly clean
2) Throughout the pothole, the asphalt is poured and spread
3) Until it is level with the pavement, compact the cold mix.
Pothole Cut & Patch Repair. The most permanent asphalt repair method performed is the saw cut and removal. Before replacing with new hot-mix asphalt then compacted with a vibratory roller after removing that damaged area that is cut out and clearing out the debris. The saw-cut joint is sealed with a hot-rubberized crack sealant to prevent water infiltration upon completion.