Asphalt pavements are the obvious choice for developers for parking lots and driveways that have been practiced since the 1970s and are still equally effective for managing stormwater.
Porous asphalt pavements mostly used for parking lots, allow water to permeate through the pavement surface and direct it to a stone recharged bed from where the water reaches the soils below the pavement, explains the experts at Triangle Asphalt Services.
The changes in the stormwater regulations in 2016 have encouraged developers and contractors to take a renewed interest in asphalt pavements to reap the benefits of the time-tested paving with an average lifespan of 20 years.
Asphalt pavements are ideal for stormwater management systems that allow infiltration and improve water quarter quality, and sometimes eliminating the need for a detention basin.
Porous asphalt pavements are similar to any other asphalt pavements in their versatility that facilitate designing pavements for many situations.
Ensuring Long Life of Asphalt Pavements
Whether asphalt pavements last through the designated life depends on proper care and maintenance. Since water infiltrates through the asphalt surfaces and passes through the different layers of the pavement, asphalt pavements are subject to rapid wear and tear that increases if the surface endures too many heavy loads or high traffic.
Besides using the best quality materials for the construction of asphalt pavements, the type of soil underneath the base stone and the area’s thaw and freeze cycles impact the pavements’ lifespan.
Proper upkeep and regular maintenance can offer ample protection to asphalt pavements, ensure that it lasts the entire life, and provide the appropriate return on investment.
The following actions can be effective to extend the lifespan of asphalt pavements by a few years beyond the stipulated average lifespan of 20 years,
Prevent Water Damage
To preserve the asphalt pavement, it is necessary to prevent water damage by preventing water seepage with the proper pavement design that supports water drainage.
Preventing unwanted water accumulation under the surface of the asphalt pavement helps avoid the dangers of damage to the pavement due to freezing and thawing that happens naturally due to the seasonal changes.
Even when designed for draining water, the passage of water should be away from the driveway or parking lot to prevent any chances of water accumulation under the pavement.
Fill Cracks and Seal Coat
Soon upon detecting cracks in the asphalt pavement, seal it immediately no matter how minor it might be. Seal coating the pavement surface periodically will prevent oxidation of the surface due to moisture exposure.
However, avoid over sealing because it can pose other problems and reduce the life of the pavement.
Apply a fresh layer of seal coat upon the previously sealed pavement only when the earlier coating has completely worn away, and large portions of the bare pavement surface become visible.
Seal coating every 2-3 years is the standard recommendation of the experts, but the frequency might be less for areas of heavy traffic that are more susceptible to damages. However, if the pavement still looks worn out after going through the above steps, it is time to replace it.