PAVING & OVERLAYS
When paving on grade, new asphalt is placed on finished subgrade or aggregate base material. Tack coat is required only on adjoining surfaces and not over the entire area. The new asphalt is laid down using the same process as the overlay below.
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When an asphalt pavement’s deficiencies are primarily surface distresses, milling (also known as cold planning) may offer an effective solution. Surface distress may include raveling (aggregate becoming separated from the binder), rutting (formation of low spots), shoving (a washboard-like effect), bleeding (asphalt binder coming up to the surface) and minor cracking.
A milling machine is designed to remove a selected, precise thickness of asphalt pavement. These machines use a large, rotating drum that grinds and removes the pavement surface without penetrating the base. Water is generally applied to the drum as it spins for heat and dust control.
As part of the process, the milled material is moved by conveyor belt from the machine and loaded into trucks. This material is then transported to an approved recycling site where it is screened and mixed with stone to produce high quality base material.
The asphalt pavement remaining after the milling process is thoroughly cleaned utilizing high-speed air blowers and/or mechanical sweepers. An asphalt emulsion tack coat is then sprayed over the entire area to improve bonding.
A new layer of hot mix asphalt is placed using conventional paving equipment. Generally, asphalt is replaced at the same thickness as was removed. Thickness may be varied to meet special requirements. Compaction is completed with steel wheeled, vibratory rollers.
A major advantage of asphalt milling is that there need not be any elevation changes. The completed new pavement should match existing structures and should not change the drainage in any way. Milling is also cost effective, environmentally friendly, and has a faster completion time compared to many other systems.
An asphalt overlay is simply the process of installing a new surface layer of hot mix asphalt directly over existing asphalt on either parking lots or roads. In order to be a candidate for an overlay, a pavement should be relatively sound without large areas of base failure. Prior to resurfacing, pavement repairs and transitions must be made. Cracks should be filled with rubberized crack sealer, and a tack coat applied over the entire surface. A new layer of asphalt is then placed.
An asphalt overlay is the least costly of the reconstruction techniques, but it has definite drawbacks. These include a limited service life, elevation considerations, inability to make drainage corrections, and a tendency to show reflective cracking in a relatively short period of time.
Fabric overlay is a way to delay reflective cracking. Although it will not completely prevent such cracking it will slow and possibly reduce them. Prior to placing a new layer of hot mix asphalt, a geo-textile fabric is embedded in liquid asphalt binder over the entire surface. The fabric/binder combination forms a membrane that helps keep water out of the base. The cost is approximately one-third greater than a basic overlay.