Understanding Surface Distress in Pavements

Asphalt background texture with some fine grain with Yellow Stripe

Do you notice any cracks or fracture on your parking area pavement? Do you see signs of distortion or depression, too? These could be signs of surface distress.

Surface distress on pavements are signs of underlying problems that need addressing. It means that these surfaces may soon have significant damage, which can be much more expensive to repair.

Primary Types of Pavement Distress

Signs of distress that are visible on the surface fall under three major groups: fracture, disintegration, and distortion.

Fracture comes in the form of cracks. It usually happens when rigid pavements are exposed to harsh elements or temperature changes. Overloading the pavement may also cause a few fractures.

Distortion is another common surface distress in pavements. Similar to fractures, distortion may result from excessive loading and swelling.

Meanwhile, disintegration comes in the form of spalling, which may occur from a lack of bonding. Exposure to chemicals and poor compaction can cause the pavement to disintegrate slowly.

Proper pavement maintenance and repair

pavement with orange cone

Many business establishments get the right pavement solutions for their commercial parking lot or driveway. But even quality pavement can deteriorate. It’s important to know how you can avoid problems and costly maintenance expenses.

One way to protect your pavement is by implementing load and speed restrictions. If the subgrade is too weak to withstand heavy loads because of extreme exposure to moisture, it’s best to prevent massive and fast-moving vehicles from using the paved path.

All kinds of pavement also need patching at some point. If you see signs of a problem, early patching must be done. It will ensure a smooth ride for anyone who uses the pavement. You can either remove and replace the damaged part or cover the affected area using a material that’s suitable to the surface.

Factors that affect pavement repairs

Many factors affect the effectiveness of pavement repairs. They include the technique used, the material, and the weather, among other things.

For the material, there are two main types of asphalt you can use for sealing any damage to the pavement. You can either use emulsified asphalt or liquid asphalt. Each can be a perfect solution, depending on the requirements of your pavement.

In terms of weather, experts say that the best time to repair your parking lot is during the summer. The hot and dry climate will be perfect. You can guarantee that everything will dry out much faster than it would in other seasons.

Pavements can deteriorate over time. Before they do, make sure everything is well-kept all the time. Be mindful of any signs of pavement issues and see if you can repair them at their early stages. Doing so will help you avoid any expensive repairs in the long run.

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