What Causes Potholes in Asphalt?

December 2, 2020 10:11 pm Published by

Hitting a pothole on the road can be a jarring experience for everyone in the car. It can also easily damage your vehicle, so if you see them starting to creep up in your driveway or parking lot, you should take care of them right away before the problem gets worse. The development of potholes in asphalt in Washington can be attributed to a number of different factors, but they’re usually the result of the paving material being chipped away by outside forces. Doing your best to control these variables and staying on top of regular maintenance is your best bet to keep potholes at bay.

Winter weather

The cold weather of wintertime is usually the biggest culprit, which is why you see so many road crews out fixing surfaces in the spring and summer. Potholes are typically caused by the expansion and contraction of water. This water seeps under your driveway’s surface during periods of heavy precipitation (like we see in the wintertime), and it wreaks havoc once it’s there. As the weather warms and cools down, this water is freezing and melting over and over. The freezing process causes the asphalt to weaken, and as cars drive over that weak spot, they gradually chip pieces of pavement away, eventually forming potholes in asphalt in Washington.

Preventing potholes

The best way to prevent potholes is to mitigate the intrusion of water under your asphalt surface. There’s a number of ways to do this, but one of the most interesting tactics is to use permeable pavers that allow water to immediately run off of your driveway. You should also take care to address any cracks or bumps in the surface. Any gap like this is going to allow water to seep in and eventually cause potholes in your asphalt in Washington. A lot of this crack repair can be done via simple DIY elbow grease. Cold-filler patching material can be found at any home repair store, and will allow you to be proactive about keeping your driveway’s surface sealed tight against water.

Repairing potholes

There are a few different approaches to fixing potholes once they appear. The first is patching, which is obviously the most localized solution. This has a limited lifespan because it’s not truly fixing the problem, but it can at least buy you some time. You can also opt for an overlay, which is when a layer of compacted asphalt is spread over the top of the driveway to seal the entire surface. Finally, you can go for a full reconstruction of the paved surface. This is a costly solution that involves ripping up and replacing the entire driveway, but you can rest assured that the problem is completely solved and you’re left with a gleaming new surface.

If asphalt pothole repair in Washington is becoming a headache for you or your business, it’s a good idea to have a pro take a look and help you decide what to do. Give Jimini Paving a call today to arrange a consultation—we’d be glad to discuss your pothole issues!

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