Potholes & Infrared Paving: Timing Is Critical
When it comes to repairing asphalt pavement, timing is critical. The longer that a break in the pavement is allowed to go without proper repair, the more likely it becomes that your pavement will suffer extensive damage that will be costly to resolve. Once an asphalt pothole develops, it can allow a substantial amount of water to reach the pavement’s supporting foundation. The foundation becomes eroded, additional potholes form and existing potholes turn into craters that can cause serious damage to vehicles and painful injuries to pedestrians.
Potholes & Infrared Paving: Timing Is Critical – What Causes Potholes?
Although potholes can potentially result from improper installation of the asphalt pavement, most of the time, they are weather-related. If cracks are not filled, water can leak underneath the pavement. Sand and gravel may collect in the crack as well. During hot weather, the accumulated water remains liquid, eating away at the foundation that gives the pavement its strength and flexibility. Without sufficient support, the pavement is more prone to damage, so additional cracks develop. Once temperatures drop below freezing, the water turns into ice and expands. The ice exerts upward pressure on the pavement, leading to more cracking, but it can also force the sand and gravel onto the surface of the pavement. This leaves a cavity when the ice melts, allowing the pavement to sag and a pothole to develop. As traffic continues to pass over the pothole, the additional stress causes the pothole to grow in both depth and circumference.
What Is Infrared Paving?
To understand why infrared paving is an ideal choice for repairing potholes, it might be helpful to review how traditional repairs are typically made. In most cases, the contractor will remove the damaged area by cutting it out with a saw before installing new asphalt. This method leaves a seam where the new asphalt meets the existing pavement, and this seam is a weak point that could fail, allowing water penetration to occur. Furthermore, if the weather is quite cold, the contractor might have to resort to a temporary patch using a cold-mix material, requiring a second repair once conditions permit. Infrared paving eliminates cold seams and can be performed in cooler weather than most hot-mix repairs. In fact, infrared paving can sometimes be performed in the middle of winter in the Connecticut area.
Infrared technology uses an infrared heater to soften the area needing repair as well as a small part of the surrounding pavement. Once the area has been softened enough, the asphalt is worked and new asphalt is mixed in if it is needed. The repaired area is seamlessly fused to the existing pavement for a strong, durable repair that is often virtually invisible.
Infrared technology can be used for more than just repairing potholes, however. It can be used to eliminate low spots in the pavement that allow water to collect and remain long after it has rained or snow has melted. Infrared technology can be used to make subtle adjustments to the pavement’s drainage, repair areas softened by automotive fluids, install thermoplastic markings or level areas that pose tripping hazards. However, infrared repair may not be suitable if the supporting foundation must be repaired or replaced.
Contact Us for Prompt, Professional Service
Driveway Sealing Call Frank is a residential and commercial asphalt sealcoating contractor and has been providing an extensive range of pavement services since 1998. Our services include infrared repairs, asphalt paving, crack repairs, sealcoating, parking lot striping and concrete installation, asphalt repair and maintenance. We serve many locations in Connecticut, including Greenwich, Fairfield, Stamford, Westport, Milford, New Canaan and West Haven. We are committed to providing exceptional workmanship and superior service. If you would like to request a free quote, you can submit the online form. If you prefer, you can call us at (203) 378-0080 or 1-800-DRIVEWAY.
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