Regardless of the paving material used, no pavement will last forever. In some cases, the only option is to remove the existing concrete or asphalt pavement, then build a replacement pavement. Fortunately, many asphalt pavements can be salvaged by installing an asphalt overlay. If necessary, the procedure for overlaying an asphalt pavement will need to include crack repairs.
What Is an Asphalt Overlay?
Asphalt overlays are layers of asphalt that are installed over an existing pavement. Because some of the existing pavement will need to be removed when preparing to install the overlay, the process is sometimes referred to as asphalt resurfacing.
What Steps Do Atlanta Paving Contractors Follow When Installing an Asphalt Overlay?
Paving contractors normally follow a step-by-step process when resurfacing an asphalt pavement. However, it is important to note that the process may vary slightly between different types of pavements. For example, parking lot paving companies might include a set of steps on parking lot resurfacing jobs that cannot be completed in one operation. Generally, however, Atlanta paving contractors adhere to the following steps.
1. Mill the pavement to grind away two or three inches of the pavement. Clean the pavement to remove any debris that the milling machine left behind.
2. If there are cracks that went deeper than the milling machine was set to remove, these cracks must be filled or sealed before proceeding. The next section discusses the issues that skipping this step can cause.
3. After repairing the cracks, asphalt resurfacing contractors typically apply a tack coat to help the overlay adhere to the existing pavement.
4. Next, asphalt paving contractors place, work, and compact a sufficient number of asphalt lifts to return the pavement to its original height.
Why Are Crack Repairs Critical Before Proceeding With Asphalt Resurfacing?
As you probably noticed when reading the above section, contractors do not repair cracks if the milling process will remove them. It is when the cracks go beyond the depth of asphalt that the milling machine grinds away that repairs become necessary.
1. The overlay will quickly begin to reflect the pattern of cracks that lies beneath it. Some contractors call this telegraphing the pattern.
2. Due to the open cracks, the pavement above them has less support, so the overlay will crack in the same location.
3. As long as the hidden crack is open, it is possible for moisture to enter and work its way deeper into the structure of the pavement. Since a crack will probably open up immediately above the lower crack, serious water penetration becomes more likely.
4. Once water erodes the base layers, subsidence, potholes, and alligator cracking are all highly likely to occur. The damage can spread until it affects the integrity of the entire pavement.
If you need an asphalt overlay, new asphalt paving, crack sealing, asphalt repairs, asphalt milling and reclamation, or pavement markings, contact The Surface Masters for assistance. We are a dependable, highly experienced, and well-respected Atlanta paving company serving the greater Atlanta area. Our clients receive exceptional service and exemplary results at competitive rates. For a free quote, call our Marietta office at 770-250-6392, fill out the online request form, or email Info@TheSurfaceMasters.com.