If you have lived in Wisconsin for any amount of time, you know that there are four seasons – winter, winter, winter and road construction. We’re proud to say that we can help you with all four of those seasons! For expert tips on keeping your business booming during construction, visit our blog about construction phasing. And, for the other three seasons, we bring you the top three ways we can help your lot recover from the effects of winter. Read on to learn more.
Why Does Cold Weather Impact Pavement?
It’s important to first understand how cold weather affects your asphalt and why it causes so many issues. The root of most of the asphalt-related winter problems is temperature fluctuations. Additional factors that increase the chances of winter asphalt wear and tear include:
– Salt or other de-icing agents
– Snowplow damage
– Poorly maintained asphalt
In most cases, as rain falls or snow melts, the water seeps into cracks and imperfections on the surface of your asphalt. When the temperature drops, that same water will freeze and expand. As it expands, it causes tiny imperfections or cracks to grow larger. This will continue to happen all winter, with the water seeping further down each time, making the cracks bigger and deeper. It’s known as the freeze/thaw cycle.
One of the more common results of the freeze/thaw cycle comes in the form of potholes. The water beneath the surface of the road combined with the constant pressure of heavy traffic volume leads to depressions in the road or parking lot. It’s important to address potholes early because of the damage they can cause to vehicles that use your road or lot.
Our Milwaukee asphalt contractors recommend patching as one of the top ways to repair this damage. Pothole patching involves a localized application of asphalt material. The pre-measured amount is poured into the hole and compacted either by machine or hand-tools. It is then left to harden, resulting in a smooth, flat surface.
Another common winter-related surface issue is heaved concrete or frost heave. Although not everyone knows this problem by the name, most of us have seen it before. It’s when one part of a walkway, lot or driveway juts up higher than the rest. Causes of heaved concrete include the following:
– Improper drainage
– Lack of recommended maintenance
– Freeze/thaw cycles
– Improper installation of concrete
The best way to address frost heave is with concrete grinding. You will want to find a paving company who is well equipped to smooth these areas out by using a grinder. We also recommend discussing more long-term solutions if your lot, walkway or other surface is improperly drained.
Catch Basin Repair
Catch basin failure is another serious problem that can be caused by the severe conditions of winter. Catch basins are open-grated manholes that have a collector known as a croc. Usually, a pipe is cored into the side of the catch basin where the water escapes and is directed to a bigger storm water system, ditch, or retention pond.
The freeze/thaw cycle can easily cause the catch basin to crack on the inside, causing the surrounding asphalt to fail. At times it can even cause a sinkhole to form which can be very dangerous. It’s essential that this problem be addressed as soon as possible. Read our blog on the importance of catch basin repair to learn more about how Suburban Asphalt can help you resolve this problem.
With over 55 years of experience and real focus on customer satisfaction, you can rely on us whether its new construction, major rehabilitation or winter repair. Suburban Asphalt provides paving solutions that are long-lasting, aesthetically pleasing and cost effective. Contact us today to request a quote for your next commercial or residential asphalt project!