Asphalt Overlay or Asphalt Replacement?

Asphalt Overlay or Asphalt Replacement?

With proper care, an asphalt pavement can deliver many years of attractive, safe use. However, in time, you will realize that your pavement needs more than just a pothole repaired or a new sealcoating application. Your first thought may be that you need to have your pavement removed and replaced, and you are dreading the cost as well as the impact that the process could have on your normal operations. When you hear about something called an asphalt overlay, you may begin to wonder whether this could be a faster, easier, and cheaper solution to your problem.

What Is an Asphalt Overlay?

Also referred to as asphalt resurfacing, an overlay is the placement of fresh asphalt layers on top of an existing pavement. Overlaying pavement is a common method chosen for many state, federal, county, and municipality paving renovations. Typically, a road or parking lot paving company starts by using an asphalt milling machine to grind away about three inches of the existing pavement. The milled particles are then taken to an asphalt recycling plant so that they can be incorporated into new products, including more asphalt paving. A sufficient number of asphalt layers are installed and compacted to return the pavement to its original elevation.

What Are the Advantages of an Asphalt Overlay?

Not all pavements are in suitable condition to make an overlay cost-effective. However, if your pavement qualifies, you should receive the following four benefits.

1. Overlaying your pavement is a fraction of the cost of removing and replacing it.
2. Overlaying pavement is faster than reconstructing it, so you will experience less impact on your normal operations.
3. Few people will be able to tell whether you resurfaced or rebuilt your pavement from its appearance and functionality.
4. Milling allows curbs, drains, transitions, and other features to be retained at their correct heights.

What Makes a Pavement Unsuitable for Overlaying?

In theory, a street or parking lot paving company could install an overlay on almost any pavement. However, unless the following conditions are met, the overlay will have a short life, and it may not be as visually appealing as it should, so a reconstruction might be more cost-effective.

1. The foundation needs to be relatively stable and strong. Foundation repairs require the removal of the existing pavement to provide access to the base layers, so a reconstruction may make more sense if more than 25% of the foundation needs to be repaired.
2. Damage that goes deeper than what can be removed through asphalt milling will need to be repaired before placing an overlay. If the damage covers more than about 35% of the pavement, rebuilding the pavement may be a better option.
3. Overlaying pavement that has been destroyed by a subterranean drainage issue or a poorly engineered foundation is seldom recommended by reputable asphalt paving Austin Texas contractors. Unless the underlying problem is corrected, the overlay will soon manifest the same issues.

If you need help deciding whether asphalt overlay is the right choice, contact RDC Paving. We are an experienced, honest company with a stellar reputation for workmanship, service, and professionalism. We offer many pavement-related services, including asphalt paving and overlaying, driveway paving, asphalt sealcoating, asphalt milling, parking lot striping, asphalt repairs, concrete repairs, asphalt crack repairs, concrete curbs, and parking lot maintenance programs. If you would like to request a free quote, you can either call 512-920-9155 or submit the online form.

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