What causes potholes?

The amount of potholes we see this spring may be unprecedented due to the overwhelming amount of snow and ice we’ve received this winter. Municipalities and commercial property owners all over the country have already begun to speak out about the seriousness of the problem. Although a pothole may only be a few inches deep, as it progresses larger potholes can cause major problems on roads and in parking lots. For commercial property owners it’s important to begin fixing these problems as soon as possible to avoid extensive – and expensive – problems throughout 2014.

Where do potholes come from?

Potholes are most often the result of pavement fatigue, caused by the natural process of aging. After several years of exposure to weather and traffic, pavement can begin to lose it’s flexibility and resistance to water. Additionally, if proper drainage isn’t maintained throughout the surrounding property, water can be directed towards pavement and begin washing out the lower layers of its structure. If these issues aren’t addressed with proper maintenance and timely repair, cracks begin to form on the surface and allow water to seep beneath the pavement. Once this occurs the base material will be disrupted and extensive cracking will ensue. As cars and trucks drive over the damaged area, chunks of pavement will begin to come out of place. As the pavement is pulled up the pothole begins to form and will continue until it is fixed OR makes the pavement unusable.

It doesn’t have to happen

The best cure for potholes is proper maintenance and timely repair. The first step in proper preventative maintenance is asphalt sealcoating. Sealcoating a parking lot or drive within the first year after it is installed, and every 3 to 5 thereafter, will greatly increase the pavement lifespan. When cracks begin to appear it is critical that they are sealed as soon as possible to prevent water and chemicals from penetrating deep into the pavement layers. If you suspect drainage issues, be sure to fix those immediately as well.

Without question, all pavements have a finite lifespan, but proper maintenance and repair can greatly extend – and even double its service life. Not only is this good for business, but also good for your bottom line. Learn more about our cutting-edge infrared pothole repair service.

Get in touch

Asphalt Pavement Solutions are professionals in asphalt repair and maintenance with over 30 years experience. If you would like to get started or have questions, please call us at 1-800-559-SEAL or fill out the Free Job Quote today.