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Things to Know

Asphalt is a man-made product consisting of natural materials that are subject to natural phenomena such as variances in size and texture, expansion, contraction and shrinkage. Because of these natural tendencies certain expectations should be assumed when installing and maintaining an asphalt surface.

Residential Information

  • Singular cracks can and will occur over a period of time due to natural phenomena such as expansion and contraction due weather and environmental conditions.
  • Where 2 mats of asphalt join together known as a joint will have a granular appearance.
  • The edges of the drive will typically crack first because of the contraction and expansion of the surrounding area i.e. topsoil or grass areas.
  • The edge is also the weakest area of the drive and should not be driven on if at all possible because it could disturb or damage the edge.
  • Whenever asphalt is placed or worked by hand the material will typically have a more granular appearance. This is not a compaction issue.
  • Care should be taken to avoid vehicles sitting and turning your tires in place as this can create surface disturbances known as power steering marks that deface the paved surface.
  • Installation depths are referred to in averages of depth after compaction because the existing surface is not a smooth profile.
  • Seal coating is considered normal maintenance of asphalt surfaces. Most pavements require sealing every 2-3 years. Seal coating will lessen a coarse appearance in the drive.
  • Wait a period of 6-12 months after asphalt pavement installation, before seal coating your paved surface to allow for proper curing. Sealing season occurs between May and October in Ohio.
  • Cracks are inevitable and typically are crack sealed if they are 1/4 inch or larger during the sealing process.
  • Asphalt is a flexible pavement and the edges of the asphalt surface are not pre formed (as in conrete surfaces) therefore creating variances along it’s border.
  • Refer to the Home Builders Association’s Industry Standards Booklet Section IV for acceptable tolerances and standards for asphalt surfaces.