Asphalt is a really durable material which can be used to pave a variety of different surfaces, such as parking lots, driveways and roads. However, while asphalt should last for many years, it isn't an indestructible substance. Having an understanding of how asphalt can be damaged can help you to take steps to mitigate the effects and to prepare for any potential repairs which may be necessary. Below is a guide to 3 things which can damage asphalt.
The weight of heavy vehicles can cause an asphalt surface to become depressed, leaving trenches and marks. The rocking motion generated when heavy equipment such as a dumper truck is driven across an asphalt can cause additional stress which can lead to the creation of surface cracks. To avoid this damage, you should try to keep heavy vehicles off an asphalt surface. If you need to drive a heavy vehicle over asphalt, you should make sure it is as light as it can be and you should only keep in on the asphalt for as short a time as possible.
While asphalt isn't as brittle as concrete, it is still susceptible to cracking. Once the surface of the asphalt has become cracked, it can deteriorate very quickly. This is because water can penetrate the surface of the asphalt, collecting in the cracks. As the temperature rises and falls, the water may freeze and thaw, causing the crack to expand further. This cycle continues, with more water collecting in the crack leading to further deterioration of the asphalt surface. To extend the life of an asphalt surface, it is vital that you repair any cracks as soon as they develop. The longer you leave a crack exposed to the elements, the great the risk of damage will be.
While fuel will leave a stain on concrete, it can cause lots of damage to an asphalt surface. Asphalt is petroleum-based, this means that if it is exposed to fuel, the fuel will begin to break down the surface of the roadway or paving. This is because the petroleum which binds the asphalt material together will no longer be effective. If you notice any fuel spills on your asphalt surface, it is important that you take immediate steps to clean up and decontaminate the area.
If you would like further advice about how to care for an asphalt surface, you should contact a contractor today.