Asphalt Paving: What’s the Process?

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Asphalt Paving: What’s the Process?

Asphalt paving has a lot of moving parts and considerations before the top layer of pavement goes down. When it comes to your project, you need a process that is both thorough and efficient as possible. In order to ensure a successful asphalt paving project, here are the 8 steps that must be followed.

The 8 Key Steps for Asphalt Paving

While specifics vary from project to project, working with local asphalt paving specialists on these steps—and their state-of-the-art machinery and experienced team members—can help bring out the best results.

1. Take Care of the Prep Work

Asphalt paving has initial demands that require extensive planning and designing. This includes: 

  • Creating a comprehensive budget that accounts for both pavement implementation and upkeep. 
  • Gauging the current condition of the project area.
  • Assembling workers who are specialized in the required work. 
  • Connecting with the right people to get the necessary approvals to start work. 
  • Analyzing and accounting for how much traffic the pavement will have to support. 

2.  Clear The Site  

First, all existing pavement and surface materials must be removed and/or milled. Otherwise, the integrity of the asphalt pavement will be compromised from the start. Any debris created from demolition must also be completely removed before proceeding. 

3. Grade The Site

Once a clear foundation is ready, the grading process helps determine if there’s an optimal level of water drainage. Otherwise, long-term degradation—and issues like cracks and potholes—have a much higher likelihood of happening. With sloping services, any initially poorly graded surface can perform as needed. 

4. Lay The Sub-Base 

Made from a layer of stone typically—depending on the project—a good sub-base will ensure that everything underneath the surface is in working order. The sub-base is responsible for the core support and stability of asphalt pavement. It’s essential for preventing cold-weather damage and ensuring asphalt will stay strong under vehicles. 

5. Bring In the Binder Asphalt Layer

A pre-prepared heated asphalt binder mix can then be brought in by trucks. It should be made up of a custom combination of asphalt binders, aggregates (i.e., stone and mineral particles) and other additives at a just-right consistency for the project. 

6. Apply the Top Asphalt Layer

The top layer of asphalt—also called the wear or surface course—is evenly applied by a paving machine and compacted with rollers to ensure proper density. All the proceeding steps help ensure that it performs well against inclement weather and ongoing traffic. As part of this work, there also needs to be seamless transitions between where the new asphalt pavement meets other existing pavement (this ensures drivers don’t feel a huge difference when going from one area to another). 

7. Add Any Markings 

Once the surface has been smoothed, compacted and cured (i.e., cooled and hardened) any necessary markings can be added. For example, if the asphalt paving was for a parking lot, you can now complete line stripping

8. Commit to Upkeep

By regularly maintaining the condition of your asphalt pavement, you help prevent problems like alligator cracking that require repairs. With sealcoating every 2-3 years, your asphalt pavement can preserve its fresh look and remain better protected against weather, traffic and other factors.   

Raleigh Paving Has Perfected The Asphalt Paving Process

When done correctly, asphalt paving can be a highly efficient process. At Raleigh Paving, we’ve been achieving optimal results throughout North Carolina for nearly 100 years. Incorporating the right people and equipment for the job at every turn, we can collaborate with you on a custom solution that can best serve your needs and minimize downtime. Whether you have a completely unpaved area you’re working with or existing pavement that’s past its prime, we can help. Schedule your free consultation or call us today!

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