Asphalt is one of the most commonly used paving materials, and it’s also very popular for usage in driveways, parking lots, and various walkways which are installed around commercial and retail outlets. There are literally millions of miles of roads which are paved in local areas around the country, and 90% of these roadways have been paved with asphalt.
In addition to being extremely popular as a paving material, more and more homeowners are also using asphalt to pave their driveways, because it’s attractive and adds value to the home itself. Asphalt is also highly recyclable and very durable, which makes it exceptional as a paving material. Here are some very interesting facts about asphalt which you really should be aware of, if you’re planning to install any kind of asphalt surface around your own home.
Best time for surfacing
Probably the best time for installing a new asphalt driveway is in the summer, because the best options for paving projects are using warm mix and hot mix asphalt. Both of these options require warm weather in order to be installed optimally, because all the components of hot mix asphalt are at their best when the weather is hot. It is certainly possible to use cold mix asphalt if you need to make emergency repairs during the cold season, and this will still seal your driveway, but it’s not the most effective time for paving purposes. If you’re planning to install a new driveway, you should try to plan for sometime in the spring, summer, or early fall.
Sealcoating can protect your asphalt
Asphalt is very good at resisting the effects of snow, rain, and other weather elements, however they can resist all those things much better if a good sealcoating is applied every other year or so. By applying a good sealcoating, you can significantly extend the life of your asphalt driveway or parking lot, because it will help to fend off the ultraviolet rays of the sun, as well as all the moisture which might accumulate from rain and snow storms. Sealcoating has proven to be extremely effective at prolonging the life of asphalt driveways, because it protects the underlying asphalt itself from deterioration.
Regular care for your asphalt
Apart from regular sealcoating, there are some other steps you should take to prolong the life of your asphalt driveway. The more conscientious you are about carrying out these protective measures, the longer your asphalt driveway will remain free of problems, and provide an excellent surface. It’s a good idea to regularly clean your asphalt driveway, for instance if oil spills or chemical spills should fall on the surface, because these can leach into the asphalt and cause damage. If you have put salt on your asphalt driveway during the winter for traction and for melting snow, it’s a good idea to remove this salt at the earliest opportunity, so it can’t degrade your asphalt. If any repairs become necessary during the life of your driveway, these should be attended to as quickly as possible, so they aren’t allowed to worsen and become problems.
Asphalt is a renewable resource
Asphalt is one of the most renewable resources on earth, and it is recycled more than any other substance used today. That means it has a very low impact on the environment, simply because it’s almost never completely discarded or destroyed. The recycle rate for asphalt is extremely high, and that means it’s one of the most renewable resources on the planet.
Fresh asphalt needs to be protected
Even though fresh asphalt will cure much quicker than most other paving materials, it still has to be protected during the curing process. That means it will be necessary to keep all objects such as people, pets, and cars away from the surface for 72 hours or more. You should also not drive heavy vehicles over the asphalt for the first month after it has been installed, because it’s still really settling in. After your asphalt has been in place for a month or so, you don’t have to worry so much about how it’s being impacted by other objects. But if you do take care of your asphalt surface, you can count on it lasting for a long time, and looking great for that entire period.