Recognizing Common Asphalt Problems

It is crucial to play a proactive role in maintaining your pavement. This starts by preventing problems before they start. From day one, as soon as your asphalt pavement is installed, numerous factors are working to deteriorate your pavement surfaces. Water, the sun's UV rays, oxidation, oil, fuel and petroleum products and traffic are all working together to destroy your pavement surfaces.


It is important for the longevity of your pavement to apply a seal coating material within 1 year after it's been installed. This will greatly help extend the life of the surface, and a small investment now will save money down the road. With the rising cost of petroleum and oil related products, the cost of asphalt rises. It is crucial to maximize it's life span to gain a maximum return on your investment.



Oxidation and Graying

As time passes, the combined assault of water, petroleum products, UV rays and traffic play their part to oxidize and deteriorate your pavement. As the pavement ages, it loses it's black appearance and takes on a gray look. This is a result of the asphalt binder drying out and becoming brittle. This makes it more prone to cracking. At this stage, it is important to stop the deterioration of your pavement.

oxiasphalt problem: dation and graying

Weed and Vegetation Growth

When cracks and joints are left unfilled, an ideal condition exists to harbor the growth of various vegetation. The dirt, debris, and soil in the cracks provide an ideal environment for vegetation growth in the cracks of the pavement surface. As it grows, the crack expands providing an ideal entry point for water penetration that could lead to more extensive damage. The solution is to burn and remove the vegetation and apply a hot rubberized crack sealer.

weed asphalt problem: and vegetation growth


As the pavement ages, the asphalt binder used to hold the sand and stone particles deteriorates and the aggregate starts to loosen. Raveling causes your pavement to take on an extremely rough appearance. Over time, your pavement wears thinner and thinner. We recommend sealcoating to restore the appearance, as well as fill in the voids.

asphalt problem: raveling

Linear Cracks

Linear cracks are fairly common in aging pavement. As the crack remains open, water is able to penetrate bellow the pavement surface into the base material. Cracks also fill with sand, dirt and debris. As pavement expands and contracts during hot and cold cycles, the materials in the crack exert pressure, causing the crack to expand and the edges to crumble.

asphalt problem: linear cracks

Spider Web Cracking

When cracks are left unfilled, it allows water penetration to enter the sub base of the material and soften it up, which leads to a condition known as spider web cracking. This problem is also caused by improper installation or exceeding the weight limits the pavement surface was designed for. If caught early, it can be addressed in a relatively inexpensive way by utilizing a crack sealer to minimize further water seepage. The best long-term repair is to cut the pavement out and patch the area.

asphalt problem: spider web cracking

Extensive Alligator Cracks

Left untreated, alligator cracks will ultimately expand and cause irreversible damage to your pavement. If these damaged areas are isolated in a few areas, cutting out and patching the area is still a viable option. If your parking area has numerous areas that look like this that cover more than 50% of the total parking surface, the damage is too extensive to repair. The key to maximizing your investment is to address minor issues through preventative maintenance before the damage becomes severe.

asphalt problem: alligator cracks