Potholes are jarring, annoying, and a hazard. They bring down the appearance of a road or parking lot and can lead to car problems like popping tires or damaged suspensions. This is why it’s important to do everything in your power to try to prevent them, or, in the event that they’ve already formed, to fix them as soon as possible. Here’s what you should know about potholes.
How Are Potholes Formed?
Potholes start with cracks in your pavement, after rain or soil gets into the soil under the asphalt through a crack. When temperatures drop, this moisture under the pavement causes the ground to expand, which results in potholes. This is because after temperatures rise again, the ground goes back to normal, but the pavement stays lifted. This means that when the initial crack is driven over, the pavement cracks even more and pieces fall into the space between pavement and ground, creating a pothole.
The role temperature plays in the formation of potholes is why you see so many of them on roads after the cooler, wetter months. This is why learning how to prevent potholes before it starts to snow is so important, so that you can take that measure against all the spring and summer potholes and resulting road work.
Here are four tips you can use to prevent potential potholes and keep your roads as smooth and safe to drive on as possible.
#1. Treat Cracks
As you see, potholes form from untreated cracks and the moisture that can get to the soil through them. Taking measures such as crack sealing and asphalt maintenance not only serve to prevent cracks from growing and your asphalt from deteriorating, but also prevent potholes.
Most potholes can be prevented through the use of treatments, not giving serious cracks a chance to form. Using crack treatments will prevent water and other moisture from getting through the cracks to the soil below, ergo, preventing potholes, in addition to slowing the spread of cracks and extending the lifespan of your pavement.
#2. Regular Asphalt Maintenance
While complete asphalt removal and replacement will be required if the damage to your pavement is extensive enough, this can be avoided through routine maintenance. By utilizing annual maintenance, you can prevent your pavement from cracking as well as weather damage, which in turn, prevents potholes. Regular maintenance also keeps any existing cracks from spreading, deepening, and creating further damage and further potential for potholes.
In some cases, the asphalt of a road or a parking lot simply can’t be fixed through simple crack sealing because the damage is too extensive. In this case, your road or parking lot is already hazardous to drive on, and it will be much easier for the damage to progress further still into potholes. If this is so, then the best way to prevent potholes and to get your asphalt safe again is through complete asphalt removal and replacement.
#4. Pothole Repairs
Unfortunately, even if you maintain your asphalt and seal cracks and replace damaged asphalt, you could still get potholes in your roads or parking lots. So long as asphalt is used for these purposes, potholes are going to be something to worry about. If you’ve taken all the preventive steps and still have potholes, luckily, they do not have to stay there.
There are two methods of pothole repair. The first method is the traditional one, which is to cut out the pothole and then replace the area with new asphalt. The second method is called infrared patching, which is when the asphalt is heated before it is replaced. The reasoning behind this method is that it helps the original asphalt to bind to the new asphalt easier.
Do You Need Help With Potholes?
Here at Precision Asphalt Maintenance, we offer a number of services to help you both prevent and repair potholes. We offer crack sealing, asphalt maintenance, and pothole repair, to keep your asphalt looking pristine. Our experts will do the job quickly and efficiently, ensuring that your roads are back in good shape. For more information about pothole prevention and repair, please contact us at Precision Asphalt Maintenance today!