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Asphalt Paving Maintenance  October 14, 2005

This information can clarify and help answer some of the questions.
General asphalt problems: Sealing a concrete surface can be done as a precautionary approach to maintaining the surface. Different types of concrete use different types of sealers, but they all do the same thing: Prevent moisture from getting into the concrete and causing cracks.

Filling potholes is usually a simple process of removing any debris and loose rock and reflling the hole with the same type of concrete. For asphalt you want to make sure that your filler is packed down flat, not just dumped into the hole and left as a hump.

Filling cracks can be done using a putty knife to work the filler material into the crack. But it would be best to try and find the reason for the crack before you spend money to get it fixed. Cracks in paving can be caused by moisture, underground tree limbs and soil expansion.

Settled areas on paving can be caused by soil erosion. Check to make sure you have a stable base to wrk with before you repair the area.
Asphalt is a good surface for vehicle traffic. But its flexible-wear properties are subject to deterioration. If it isn't installed correctly and isn't maintained properly, expect cracks, lumps and potholes to develop.

To achieve a longer-lasting asphalt surface, request durable, coarser grades of asphalt. One asphalt mix that works well for home driveways is called HL3A. Two inches of compacted asphalt is adequate for a home driveway; if a service professional suggests more than this, be sure he explains why.

To save money on your asphalt repair you might want to talk to your contractor about using recycled asphalt in your project. A lot of sand and gravel companies deal with different types of recycled materials and this is one way of cutting down the cost of project while still maintaining quality.

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