06.1 - how heat affects asphalt

Unlock the Secrets to Protecting Your Asphalt Surfaces: Sun and Heat Revealed

Asphalt surfaces are essential components of our infrastructure, but they are not invincible. Elizabeth Paving Services, a leading concrete and asphalt paving company serving Elizabeth, New Jersey, and surrounding areas, understands the impact of sun and heat on asphalt. In this comprehensive guide, we will uncover the effects of these environmental factors on your asphalt surfaces and provide valuable insights on how to counter them effectively, ensuring the longevity and durability of your investment.

Understanding the Influence of Sun and Heat on Asphalt

The relentless exposure of asphalt surfaces to sunlight and high temperatures can cause significant damage over time. By comprehending the impact of these elements, you can take proactive steps to protect your pavement.

1. Fading and Oxidation: The Sun’s Slow Fade

Sunlight is packed with ultraviolet (UV) rays that degrade the asphalt binder and trigger oxidation. This process leads to the gradual fading of your pavement’s color, resulting in a lackluster and worn appearance. Oxidation also weakens the structure, making the asphalt more susceptible to cracks and other forms of damage.

2. Thermal Expansion and Contraction: Heat’s Contracting Hold

Extreme heat provokes asphalt to expand, while cooling temperatures cause it to contract. This continuous thermal cycling places tremendous stress on the asphalt surface, resulting in cracks and deformations. Over time, these issues worsen, leading to further damage.

3. Rutting and Deformation: Heat’s Warped Path

Sustained exposure to high temperatures can soften the asphalt, leading to rutting and deformation. These problems commonly arise in areas with heavy traffic or constant vehicle weight, such as parking lots and roadways. Rutting not only tarnishes the pavement’s appearance but also poses risks to drivers and pedestrians.

4. Surface Deterioration: Aging Under the Sun

Intense heat accelerates the aging process of asphalt, causing it to become brittle and prone to cracking. Spiderweb-like cracks, often referred to as “alligator cracks,” begin to appear, indicating severe damage that requires immediate attention. Prolonged exposure to heat can also loosen the aggregate within the asphalt, resulting in a rough and uneven surface.

5. Moisture Damage: Sun’s Indirect Influence

Sun and heat indirectly contribute to moisture-related damage on asphalt surfaces. UV damage and oxidation make the asphalt more porous, allowing water to penetrate. When this water freezes and thaws, it creates additional cracks and accelerates deterioration.

Shielding Your Asphalt Surfaces from Sun and Heat

While complete protection from the sun and heat is impossible, there are proactive measures you can take to minimize their impact and extend the lifespan of your pavement. Consider the following preventive actions:

1. Regular Sealcoating: A Protective Shield

Applying a high-quality sealcoat provides an additional layer of defense against UV rays, heat, and moisture. Sealcoating acts as a protective shield, slowing down oxidation and reducing the sun’s harmful effects on the pavement. Elizabeth Paving Services specializes in professional sealcoating services tailored to your specific needs.

2. Proper Drainage: Flowing to Safety

Ensure your asphalt surfaces have efficient drainage systems to prevent water from pooling. Standing water intensifies the damaging effects of heat and accelerates deterioration. Elizabeth Paving Services can assess your drainage requirements and offer suitable solutions.

3. Regular Maintenance and Repairs: A Watchful Eye

Schedule routine inspections and maintenance for your asphalt surfaces. Address signs of damage, such as cracks or deformations, promptly to prevent further deterioration. Elizabeth Paving Services offers comprehensive maintenance and repair services to keep your pavement in optimal condition.

4. Parking Lot Striping and Marking: Guiding the Way

Clear and visible parking lot striping and marking not only enhance safety but also protect the underlying asphalt. Proper markings guide vehicles, preventing undue stress on the pavement caused by improper parking or traffic flow.Understanding the detrimental effects of sun and heat on asphalt surfaces empowers you to protect your investment. By taking proactive measures such as sealcoating, ensuring proper drainage, regular maintenance, and relying on the expertise of Elizabeth Paving Services, you can mitigate the damaging impact of these environmental factors. Contact us today to learn more about our services and how we can help safeguard your asphalt surfaces from the adverse effects of sun and heat. Trust our expertise and experience to shield your asphalt surfaces and ensure their longevity.

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