Asphalt first came to America in the 1870s and has been covering our roads, driveways, and parking lots every since. in fact, it is estimated that 94 percent of the paved roads here as made with asphalt sealing.
What is asphalt?
Asphalt, or bitumen, is a semi-solid form of petroleum. The sticky, black substance is mixed with aggregate (gravel) and used to pave solid surfaces.
What is the difference between asphalt and blacktop?
Blacktop is a type of asphalt and is typically the name used in reference to asphalt that is used to build freeways and interstates. The term asphalt is also typically used to refer to driveways.
How thick does an asphalt driveway need to be?
The National Asphalt Paving Association recommends a three inch thick layer of asphalt over three inches of compacted aggregate as a minimum standard. If you expect heavy usage or live in a severe weather areas, they suggest using up to six inches of asphalt with six to eight inches of compacted aggregate.
How long does it take for a new asphalt driveway to cure?
You should typically stay off a new driveway for 24 hours. In warm weather, it is recommended to stay off the fresh asphalt for even longer. Cool weather helps asphalt cure.
How long will an asphalt driveway last?
A well cared for asphalt driveway will last 12 to 20 years. Harsh weather conditions, extreme temperatures, hazardous chemicals, and neglect all contribute to an earlier failure.
How do I maintain an asphalt driveway?
To properly maintain an asphalt driveway, take the time to thoroughly clean it twice a year, taking care to remove dirt, debris, and any stains. Every three to five years you will also need to have your driveway seal coated to help protect and preserve it. Like fresh asphalt, you will need to stay off a seal-coated driveway for at least 24 hours.
What causes damage to an asphalt driveway?
Asphalt driveways are not impervious to damage. Heavy trucks can cause ruts, especially on hot days when they asphalt can soften slightly. Your driveway can also be damaged by rock salt used to break up icy spots in the winter and by heavy rains weakening the ground beneath the driveway.
Can an asphalt driveway be repaired?
Driveways can be repaired by professionals, but call them as soon as you notice any damage. It is easier to fix right after the damage occurs.
Asphalt driveways are a great choice for driveways due to convenience, durability, and longevity.