Asphalt Maintenance – Potholes: The Good, The Bad, The Ugly

Asphalt Maintenance – Lessons Learned the Hard Way

If there is one lesson that I have learned well as an asphalt maintenance professional, it is this: in order to maintain your parking lots, driveways and roadway, it is necessary to stay on top of asphalt repairs…even though it is time-consuming and requires diligence. Here are some of the guidelines that help me and my clients.

Asphalt Maintenance – The Good

Asphalt Maintenance requires regular pothole repair.  Where there is asphalt and cold weather, potholes follow.  Although I don’t particularly like the mess and expense, after maintaining asphalt for many years (three generations) I’ve found that there are good potholes.  Yes, some potholes are good.

The picture to the right shows a good pothole.

This pothole is small, evenly shaped and not too deep. asphalt repair - good pothole -

These types of potholes are easy to fix and maintain their repair for a reasonable amount of time.

In a pinch, I can use cold patch materials to fix, but I often have the opportunity to use hot patch materials which makes the pothole more level with the surrounding asphalt.

The repair also looks better and lasts longer which is safer and more economical in the long run.

One other thing, I can get the repair done quickly, which is appreciated by property owners and tenants alike.

Asphalt Maintenance – The Bad

A bad pothole presents a variety of problems.  The location of the pothole could be bad (in the middle of a busy highway with cars whizzing by at 80 mph).

The pothole could be big…this means more time, money and effort.  The pothole could be masking a more serious substrate issue.  It could be a combination of all of these, which is really bad but not quite ugly yet.

This photo shows a bad pothole. asphalt maintenance - bad pothole -

Big bad pothole, with other serious asphalt maintenance issues attached.  As with many potholes, however, and other types of asphalt maintenance problems, it’s fixable.

Always keep safety in mind first, then try and minimize the inconvenience to property owners and users when fixing a pothole of this size.

If you have a pothole of this nature, read our article, “Pothole Repair: Challenging Situations that Only The Best Pothole Repair Companies Can Do Right”

Asphalt Maintenance – The Ugly

Quite often we are called in to quote on an asphalt repair project that has been represented as “a few potholes”.  When we get to the property, we see issues like the picture below:

asphalt maintenance ugly pothole -

This is an ugly asphalt situation that is caused by serious neglect. It appears several attempts were made to repair the asphalt.  The repairs were too little, too late and poorly done.

This asphalt disaster is not a pothole repair issue.  This is (and has been) a repaving project that has been postponed for whatever reason (usually cost considerations).  Now it’s a very costly, complicated and somewhat dangerous asphalt repair project.

Pothole Repair – Keep it simple

Don’t let your asphalt maintenance issues turn bad or even ugly.  When a pothole appears, get a good, experienced asphalt maintenance professional to take care of it.  It’s safer, more convenient and less costly than postponing it.

Only maintain good potholes, not bad potholes.  Call us at 732-886-1940 to keep your potholes good.  We deal with the bad and ugly too if you need us, we’re the experts in asphalt maintenance.

Pavement Maintenance – What is the Purpose?

asphalt patching by C and L

Pavement Maintenance – Not A High Priority?

pavement maintenance - sweeping.comPavement maintenance is often among the least prioritized element of property management. Most property owners and managers often don’t give it much thought.

They think maintaining pavement is a minor inconvenience (as opposed to the actual buildings people use) which can easily be overlooked. Others want to wait until something happens to the pavement before they act.

This is a mistake because pavement does need regular maintenance. And not just a major overhaul like repairing or replacing large sections of the pavement. Part of the necessary maintenance includes sweeping, seal coating and simple repairs.

The ultimate question is: what is the purpose of pavement maintenance? Broadly speaking, its purpose is similar to other kinds of maintenance i.e. keeping the property in peak condition. Specifically, though, pavement maintenance is important for the reasons below.

Pavement Maintenance for Appearance

It is often said that “you don’t get a second chance to make a first impression”.  This is certainly true for properties. When potential clients or tenants visit a property for the first time, the pavement is the first thing they see. A pavement which looks dirty, unkempt and in disrepair can create a negative impression which can be difficult to overcome.

On the other hand, a pavement which is clean, well-maintained and attractive creates a positive impression which can pay dividends later.

In order to ensure that visitors to a property get a positive first impression, ensure that the pavement (parking lots, walkways and entries) are well-maintained.

Pavement Maintenance for Value Preservation

The pavement (specifically a parking lot) is often a very large investment which provides actual value to tenants, clients and ultimately property owners. For instance, a well-striped and demarcated parking lot of a commercial property makes navigation very simple for first-time visitors – something which businesses operating with the premises greatly appreciate.

Keeping such a high-cost asset looking great and in a state of good repair is a smart business decision. Waiting for it to deteriorate to the point of costly overhauls is simply bad business. Maintenance in this context includes regular portering (trash removal), sweeping, crack filling, pothole repair, and line striping.

Pavement Maintenance for Cost Savings

People are often warned “don’t be penny wise and pound foolish”. This advice certainly applies to property owners and managers when it comes to maintaining pavement. As mentioned earlier, many want to postpone minor repairs and only perform major ones. This actually turns out to be costly.

Pavement maintenance saves on costs. It does this by preventing deterioration which is much costlier to fix. For instance, filling a crack prevents the crack from expanding into a pothole or substrate failure which ultimately costs much more to repair.

Pavement Maintenance as an Investment

In summary, pavement maintenance is something which every property owner and property manager need to invest in. This is because it can improve the appearance of the property, preserve the value of the pavement and save on the costs of property maintenance.

Do you want to enjoy these pavement maintenance benefits? Then find the right company to provide these services.

A profession pavement maintenance company should be able to satisfy your needs, tailor their services to your specific property, and do all this without requiring you to break the bank.

We are that company and you can call us at 732-886-1940.  We specialize in property maintenance and can provide high caliber, cost effective pavement maintenance.

Pavement Repair – What is the Purpose?

pavement repair

Pavement Repair – It Takes a Pounding!

pavement repair-sweeping.comAs asphalt pavement ages and as the pavement is pounded by constant traffic, it is only normal that the constant stress leads to faster deterioration of the surface. Only regular maintenance and pavement repair can prolong its life and restore its glory.

The paved surface on your business premises should be inspected regularly and restoration processes carried out if you want to extend the life and avoid large pavement repair expense on such surfaces.

Ignoring even small cracks could mean repairing deep potholes or replacing an entire surface in the very near future. There are three main reasons why you should take pavement repair serious.

Pavement Repair – Minimizes chances of liability

Broken pavement is a huge risk to everyone that uses it. Even small cracks on the asphalt surface could cause your customers or staff to trip and fall, leading to injuries that cause a lot of harm to you and your business. It is vital that you schedule a regular inspection of all paved surfaces on your business premises and fix any damages such as wears and potholes.

Overall, the cost of pavement repair is much smaller than the price you may need to pay and the pain you may go through should such damaged pavement cause an accident that leads to litigation.

Pavement Repair – Aesthetics go a long way in business

There is a saying that first impressions are invaluable and hard to change. When a potential customer enters business premises, he/she makes a judgment based on many things, top among them is the appearance of the property. Aesthetics have a significant effect on perception.

Therefore, invest your time and effort to scrutinize the pavements and parking lots to find anything that could create a negative impression of your property (particularly cracks, potholes or crumbling pavement).

Pavement Repair – Preserve the value of your property

While you may be convinced that the value of your property increases over time, there is a price to pay to keep its perceived value even higher. Preserving the value of the property involves setting aside money for capital improvement and possible pavement repair expenses.  This ensures that maintenance and fixes are performed timely before surface problems become unnecessarily costly.

Entrepreneurs who are good at what they do understand that property issues could seriously affect the perceived value of a business property and then reflect poorly on the businesses within that property.

Potholes, cracks, erosion and other damages on a paved surface may be a common occurrence on pavement, but they should never be ignored. They should be a very big deal to you, especially when they appear on the pavement of your business premises. These three reasons should inspire you to put measures in place to ensure that they are fixed as soon as they appear.

Do you need a professional property maintenance company?  We’re experts in all types of property maintenance.  Give us a call at 732-886-1940, we’ll be glad to service your property needs including pavement repair.

Pavement Maintenance: How to Ready Your Pavement for the Spring

pavement maintencnae as an investment -
pavement maintencnae as an investment -

Pavement Maintenance – More Than Just Hosing and Sweeping

pavement maintenance - sweeping.comToo many property managers and business people believe that pavement maintenance is all about cleaning.

However, proper paved surface maintenance goes beyond an occasional hosing and regular sweeping.

To ensure that a high traffic pavement is durable and can provide many years of smooth service, it is a good idea to schedule a complete inspection and restoration of even the tiniest defects, especially before the spring season.

As the weather begins to warm and the snow melts, natural expansion of the elements will have an impact on a pavement, especially just below the surface.

The simple truth is that every business hopes to extend the life of their asphalt driveway, parking lot, or pavement, and while these surfaces need maintenance throughout their lives, here are a few crucial maintenance steps that can be carried out for the transition from winter to spring.

Pavement Maintenance – Step 1

Conduct a thorough inspection of the paved surface.

The problems that occur and can cause very expensive damage on a paved surface are often hidden just below the surface.

There may be tiny cracks that are easy to overlook and obvious signs such as sunken areas that retain tiny pools of water.

Before the spring season sets in, it is important to get an expert to examine the pavement for signs of damage to prevent these issues from getting worse and costing you even more money to repair later.

Pavement Maintenance – Step 2

Hire a professional street cleaning company to do a full cleanup of the surface.

The inspection process often goes hand-in-hand with a thorough cleanup of the pavement or parking lot.

A professional cleaning crew with the right tools will be able to get rid of all the dirt and debris that ordinary sweeping does not even touch.

Therefore, to preserve the smoothness and durability of the surface, get the pavement fully cleaned right before the spring season.  This prevents the unwanted elements from getting stuck in tiny cracks and under the asphalt.

Pavement Maintenance – Step 3

Fill all the cracks and repair the damaged areas before they get worse.

If the company that inspects and cleans the pavement finds any areas that need to be repaired or cracks to be sealed, make sure that they get fixed as soon as possible.

A paved surface is much easier to repair and restore right before the spring season.  If you wait longer, the cracks will grow and blemishes on the surface will turn into eyesores that could cost you much more to repair in the future.

Pavement Maintenance – Step 4

If the paved surface looks gray or worn, conduct a seal coating project.

Seal Coating will make the parking lot look brand new. In fact, we recommended that asphalt is seal coated every three years. This will more than double the life of the pavement.

Seal Coating regularly optimizes safety and allows the pavement to remain structurally sound.

Pavement Maintenance – Step 5

Refresh or replace parking lot line striping.

Fixing your paved surface just before spring will not only give you a peace of mind for the rest of the year, your clients will have confidence in how much care you afford your property and by extension, to them.

To make the newly cleaned and retouched parking lot or driveway look like new, replace any damaged stripping and markings and refresh all essential markings. The winter season is particularly hard on striping, so be sure to include them in your paved surface inspection, cleanup, and repair plans.

Looking for pavement maintenance experts? Call C & L General Services at 732-886-1940.  We’ll be glad to answer your questions and recommend an optimal strategy for your pavement maintenance.

Asphalt Repair: How to Know When a Quick Fix Will Do or a Replacement is Necessary

asphalt repair - sweeping.comAsphalt Repair – An Important Question

Asphalt repair can be costly – anyone who has a large pavement or parking area to maintain will be the first to admit.

Whether the repair involves patching a hole, a crack or replacing the entire surface, an asphalt repair demands that the job be done properly the first time by a contractor with experience and a track record for success.

However, the thought of replacing an entire asphalt surface creates anxiety to both property owners and businesses. When cracks appear and grass starts sprouting on old asphalt, it can be difficult to decide whether to save money by patching the bad spots or just replace the entire asphalt surface.

The factors in the decision to repair or replace an asphalt driveway are more complicated because while a quick fix may be cost effective, a permanent solution such as replacement may be better in the long run.

Here are five major considerations to help you decide what the best option for you is.

Asphalt Repair – Your Budget and How Much Do You Have to Spend?

If there are enough funds set aside (reserve fund assets) to replace the asphalt surface, then you have more options depending on the damage, condition of the asphalt surface, and what results you expect. With little to no budget, you may be forced to consider a temporary asphalt repair that could extend the life of the pavement or driveway by weeks or months.

It is important to involve an asphalt repair company in the process to determine which is the most economical option, especially if you are carrying out the repair on a tight budget.

Asphalt Repair – Size and Severity of the Damage

No matter how well you take care of your pavement, the traffic passing over it and constant freeze-thaw cycles will certainly cause damage at some point. Damage may show as narrow cracks you can live with or potholes that an asphalt repair company must repair before the pothole grows bigger.

Depending on how severe the damage on the surface is and the risk it poses to the rest of the surface, you can determine how much individual areas cost to repair and compare with the cost of an overall replacement. Typically, cracks over a quarter inch on asphalt surfaces may show signs of deeper damage that liquid crack-fillers cannot fix.

Here’s an article we wrote a few months ago related to asphalt repair that will help you determine the types of asphalt deterioration and what to do with it – 5 Clear Signs That You Should Invest In Paving Services

Asphalt Repair – Condition and Age of the Asphalt Surface

You cannot ignore the fact that asphalt will age and deteriorate over time.

Old cracked asphalt surfaces can have deep deterioration beneath the surface that could make them very difficult to repair.  Attempting to repair severely aged asphalt may be ineffective because the older asphalt may have substrate problems causing issues with cohesion of the new pavement. Potholes are bound to re-appear where the surface is patched or where the old and the new surfaces overlap.

In cases where the surface is very old and damaged, an expert would recommend an overhaul of the pavement. However, newer pavements with little signs of cracking and flaws can be patched creating a more permanent solution.

Asphalt Repair – Traffic on the Damaged Surface

A professional asphalt repair company would use a patching material to repair damage on an asphalt surface to fix against further damage. When water intrusion starts to create new cracks and deterioration between the old material and the new one, this could be a sign that replacement is necessary.

The damage on a repaired surface is often made worse by heavier traffic exerting constant pressure on the patchwork. This means busy surfaces may require urgent or more frequent repairs to prevent further damage to pavement or vehicles traveling on the pavement.

If you are looking to repair parking lot spaces, a patch may be fine for an extended period if the repair is done effectively. However, a thoroughfare in the parking lot or the entry/exit point may demand a replacement evaluation.

Asphalt Repair – The Fix – Repair Dilemma

Many property owners are concerned with the idea of replacing a parking lot and are quick to choose a quick fix rather than deal with the root of the problem. The decision to apply a quick fix or find a lasting solution to asphalt surface damage is often dependent on how quickly the surface needs to be replaced.

The most cost-effective solution may depend on how extensive the damage is but your budget and personal preferences will determine what the best option is.

Would you like help with the decision?  Give us a call at 732-886-1940.  We are a professional asphalt repair and replacement company. We can help you by viewing your pavement, offering suggestions and taking the right approach for your asphalt repair.

5 Clear Signs That You Should Invest In Paving Services

Paving replacement - sweeping.comPaving – Nothing Lasts Forever

When carried out with precision, pavement can last a long time. A decent paving job can last up to a decade. However, nothing lasts forever. Even the best-made driveway or pavement eventually begins to wear and tear. When this happens, you need to invest in paving services to repair or replace them.

The challenge most people have is identifying precisely when to contract a paver. This is because – except in extreme cases – damaged pavement remains quite usable. So, how do you decide when you need to invest in paving services? Well, here are 5 signs which show a need for such services.

Paving Problem – Alligator Cracks

The first sign is when alligator cracks begin to appear on the asphalt. This basically a series of jagged cracks which look like alligator skin. The cracks sometimes begin as small dents caused by bicycle kickstands or motorcycles.

These dents can eventually become the center from which spider cracks develop. As such, dents and spider cracks are actually early warning signs. However, the time to act is when alligator cracks begin to appear.

Paving Problem – Linear Cracks

Another pointer to a need for repair is when linear cracks begin to appear. These are basically cracks which follow a longitudinal or curved trajectory.

This type of crack can be up to several feet long. They typically arise when tinier cracks are ignored. As such, when linear cracks begin to appear, it is a clear sign that the driveway or pavement needs to be repaired.

Paving Problem – Potholes

A pothole appears when a section of the pavement has failed. A tiny dent creates a center of weakness. As such, every time someone drives over the dent, another piece of the paving material breaks off. With time, a hole appears in the pavement and gets bigger the longer it is neglected.

As time passes, you begin to feel a bump when you drive over the hole. Also, when it rains, the hole fills up with water. When potholes begin to appear, that is a clear sign that you need to repair or even replace the surface.

Paving Problem – Failing Asphalt

The asphalt used on a driveway or pavement can actually fail. When this occurs, the asphalt starts warping, shoving, bending and developing irregularities. In extreme cases, ruts begin to appear on the surface.

Asphalt failure can have different causes. The most common one is a weak asphalt mixture or insufficient thickness. However, this weakness is often aggravated by moisture infiltration. Whatever the cause, failing asphalt needs to be fixed urgently. This is because the warping can cause skidding – especially for motorcycles – thereby contributing to an accident, particularly on rainy days.

Paving Problem – Greying Asphalt

Although asphalt seems tough, it actually has one weakness, i.e. the sun. The ultraviolet rays of the sun eventually break down the oils in the asphalt. The visible effect of this is that the asphalt turns grey.

Asphalt turning grey is actually an early pointer to the weakening of its integrity. The oils usually play a critical role in holding paving material together. As such, when oils dry out, the asphalt loses its core strength. The end result is that it becomes brittle and more susceptible to wear and tear. When asphalt begins turning grey, it is a clear sign that it needs to be replaced.

In a nutshell, those are the five signs that you need to invest in paving services. Therefore, if you start to notice the above signs on your driveway, pavement or any other paved surface, then know that it is the right time to contact a paver.

Need pavement repairs or replacement?  Call C & L Services at 732-886-940.  We’ll be glad to discuss your paving needs and offer affordable solutions.


Crack Filling: What Works and What Doesn’t

crack filling sweeping.comCrack Filling – Why Do Cracks Appear so frequently?

Pavement cracks are inevitable happen over time. There is no way to avoid these cracks, but crack filling regularly will save money in the long run. The best strategy for avoiding unsightly pavement is to fix cracks as soon as they occur.

Extreme weather over time does have negative impact on pavement. One of the main causes of pavement deterioration is water intrusion. Water gets into tiny cracks in the pavement, freezes and expands causing these cracks to get larger. This deterioration can then extend to the sub-grade base causing serious damage. Crack filling should be part of your post season maintenance, before you incur major losses.

Filling should be done on any cracks that are immediately visible. Filling the cracks at least once every year (after the freeze-thaw season ends) will extend the usable lfe of the pavement.

Crack filling – When and How

Cracks cannot be filed when it is cold. Cracks should be filled during the warmer weather between May and November. In the colder months, cracks expand and when temperatures rise the cracks contract. The crack filling materials will be too thin when it is cold and some of the cracks might reopen. Even though the filler material is designed to adjust to temperature fluctuations, these materials are not designed for extreme weather conditions.

Crack filler is applied when it is hot at a temperature of about 300 degrees and it is packed tightly into the cracks. The crack filler actually expands and contracts as temperature rises and falls.

If the size of the crack is too big (you can fit a coin into the crack) the crack should be patched with patching material. The patching material fills the the crack and then with the crack filler added, the two materials eventually bond together. The materials most commonly used for repair are a combination of asphalt patch (easy obtained through Home Depot or Lowes) and small crushed gravel.

Before patching the crack it is essential that the cracked area be as clean as possible. Clean off dust and loose debris so that the patching material can adhere without obstruction. If needed, use a chisel and a hammer to remove jagged edges and use a wire brush. Flush out any dirt remains from the crack and let it dry thoroughly before starting to fill.

Heat up the edges of the crack with a flame torch and apply the patching material with a trowel (a garden trowel used for digging is fine). Pack the material with a mallet before applying the crack filler material.

Crack Filling – Part of Regular Maintenance

Remember, you can prevent future cracks and pavement damage by regularly inspecting for cracks. Ensure that you sweep your pavement or pressure clean it to remove damaging grit or debris. Crack filling on a regular basis will prevent your pavement from deteriorating prematurely, will last longer and will remain attractive for a lifetime.

Have a large parking lot that needs crack filling?  Looking to complete a large pavement crack filling project?  Call us at 732-886-1940 and we’ll be glad to discuss you crack filling needs.

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