Image credit: Anderson & Son’s Asphalt
Asphalt is a durable material that can easily last long. However, everyday factors like moving vehicles and changing weather conditions can leave their mark, causing parking lots to take a beating and wear out faster. Over time, they can develop cracks, potholes, and other flaws including faded stripes/markings. To restore their blacktop appeal, you need the help of professionals who specialize in various asphalt maintenance services to improve the integrity of the asphalt and maintain a neat-looking parking lot. In this article, we will zoom in on one such service – parking lot resurfacing – to see how it can save worn-out asphalt without needing a full replacement.
What Does Resurfacing Mean?
Resurfacing is a type of asphalt maintenance service that requires special equipment to renew the blacktop of a parking lot and help owners update their commercial properties without needing a full-scale asphalt replacement – which is a lot more expensive. It extends the lifespan of your parking lot by reinforcing its structural integrity and making it look as good as new.
Parking lot resurfacing serves a more aesthetic and safety purpose and improves the curb appeal of your commercial property. It works on flaws like cracks, potholes, color fading, and other damages a parking lot can suffer over time, so it is the best service you can use to save your crumbling asphalt and add more years to it.
Parking lot resurfacing by DC Construction
How Does It Work?
In parking lot resurfacing, only the topmost layer of asphalt is removed, and new asphalt is poured in its place. Resurfacing – as the name suggests – works on the surface itself to update its look and restore the original, brand-new appeal of the parking lot.
Here are the general steps involved in parking lot resurfacing:
- Prep work. The parking lot should be prepared for resurfacing, and the first step is to demolish and remove structures like speed bumps and ramps and also take care of any utilities along the way.
- Asphalt milling. In the second step, the topmost asphalt layer is removed to allow new asphalt to be poured in its place. Once this stage begins, the parking lot should not be accessed by other people until the whole project is complete and the asphalt is ready for parking again.
- Filling and compacting. The exposed pavement subfloor requires further work to become smooth and even. This includes filling cracks, repairing potholes, working on rough edges, and compacting the subfloor until everything appears clean and leveled out.
- Testing. It is important to test the newly compacted subfloor and check if it can withstand the weight of the new asphalt. This is done with the help of a proof roll.
- Resurfacing. Special tools and equipment like pavers and roller trucks are used in the actual resurfacing once the previous repaving works are over. An asphalt binder is applied as the interlay between the old pavement and the new asphalt, which allows the top layer to bind well. New asphalt is then poured and rolled over throughout the parking lot and requires complete drying before the next step. At this point, your parking lot is officially resurfaced and just needs some final touch-ups before it is ready to go.
- Sealing. Once the new asphalt has fully dried, your asphalt contractor will add a sealing coat on top of it to make it more durable and resistant to the elements and general wear and tear.
- Asphalt striping. Finally, the parking stripes and other markings including ADA symbols will be painted on top of the dried sealing coat. Once everything has dried up, your parking lot will be opened for full access to everyone.
Anderson & Son’s Asphalt parking lot resurfacing project
When Is Resurfacing Needed?
There are various tell-tale signs which indicate that it is time to resurface your parking lot. Resurfacing is required when the blacktop surface has become damaged and there are visible flaws like cracks, faded markings, oil stains, small potholes, and rough or broken edges – all due to prolonged use by the traffic and exposure to changing weather. If less than 25% to 35% of your parking lot needs attention, resurfacing is the best option because it can handle this level of repair easily. You need an asphalt contractor to first come in and have a look, as only a thorough inspection can reveal the full scale of damage and the recommended course of action.
Sometimes the asphalt is no longer salvageable, in which case it will require a complete replacement. Intense structural damage often requires a full replacement because resurfacing will only add a temporary cover – which will fall apart all over again during aggressive weather and heavy traffic flow. If the extent of damage is more than 40% to 50%, you cannot choose to resurface because this will only sweep the problem under the rug – where it will wait like a ticking bomb.
Parking lot resurfacing by The Pavement Group
In general, resurfacing will only help if your current asphalt still has a solid base that can be recovered and the cracks are not deep enough to reach it. So, if the base layer is still going strong (and not compromised), then resurfacing will create a sturdy, longer-lasting, and brand-new asphalt that adds value to your property.
Other factors to consider for resurfacing include:
- The age of your parking lot. Asphalt pavements can last for around 20 years, so the age and current condition of your parking lot will determine if it needs resurfacing or replacement. Resurfacing is best for parking lots that are – at most – less than 20 years old.
- Maintenance. Regularly maintained asphalt is more conducive to resurfacing compared to one that has not been repaired or maintained over the years.
- Elemental damage. Asphalt can take a beating from the elements, especially from freezing and thawing snow, floods, and storms. So, it needs a thorough inspection before passing for resurfacing – in extreme cases, a full replacement works best.
A parking lot resurfacing project by NVM Paving & Concrete
What Are The Benefits Of Resurfacing?
When asphalt resurfacing is done right, it can extend the lifespan of your parking lot by 8 to 15 years depending on the asphalt thickness and the overall weight of the vehicles parked. It helps to restore crumbling pavement back to its original condition, adding durability and a polished look in a more cost-effective way than a full replacement. The process offers more initial cost savings as an owner if your parking lot is not too old or damaged beyond repair.
The existing blemishes get filled in, and your parking lot receives a new blacktop that lasts long and only requires frequent upkeep like filling cracks/potholes to stay in action. Resurfacing also offers a huge aesthetic benefit and is great for improving the curb appeal of your commercial property. The service relies on specialized tools and machinery, so getting in touch with reliable asphalt contractors and resurfacing experts will ensure long-term returns on your investment.
A-1 Asphalt Inc. parking lot resurfacing experts
If you notice visible signs of asphalt damage, contact your local asphalt contractor – and make sure to hire licensed and insured teams for the job. These professionals offer complete pavement management services, including thorough inspections to help you get the full list of issues to be solved. Parking lot resurfacing makes the job of property and facility managers easy because it adds great first impressions and improved curb appeal – which is important for commercial establishments. Asphalt resurfacing can double the lifespan of your parking lot, but it is not always the right solution, depending on the extent and depth of your pavement’s damage. So, follow the advice of your asphalt experts, and don’t forget to schedule regular maintenance down the road for maximum returns on your investment.