Damage to your parking lot or driveway can be caused by many different things and without assessing the actual damage there is no way to diagnose the problem or, most importantly, how much it will cost to fix. But The Lot Doctor is equipped with the right tools, materials and most importantly, the right experience to fix any problem.
Many times cracks in asphalt are due simply to age and water intrusion. When these types of cracks are repaired properly and maintained regularly (Sealed every 2-4 years) they do not become larger problems. But if repairs are not made, or done improperly, these cracks are the start of much larger problems including potholes and even subgrade failure which can lead to total asphalt failure.
1. Cleaning: We use a hot air pressure torch system to remove all debris and vegetation from the crack. Dirt and vegetation left in a crack will not allow the filler to adhere properly to the walls of the crack and will eventually lead to further water infiltration.
2. Crack Routing: Some asphalt cracks are actually larger under the surface than what is obvious on the surface. When this is the case, the surface needs to be “routed” down 1” with a machine so that enough filler can be injected to allow for proper expansion and contraction. Not doing this will almost assure you that small crack will turn into a much larger problem very quickly.
3. Filler: We use Duroflex hot pour crack sealant made by The Henry Company. This product is heated to between 350 and 400 degrees and injected into the crack with a special machine engineered specifically for cracks between ¼” and 1 ¼”.
4. Sealer: After the Duroflex Sealant dries, we are ready finish the sealing project as we would any other part of the surface with the Duraseal asphalt sealant.
Potholes are usually a result of having unrepaired cracks that have allowed water to penetrate the asphalt. Once water has penetrated the surface of the asphalt, it begins to further erode the asphalt by removing many of the natural oils and minerals that hold asphalt together. It will also begin a freeze/thaw process that will put unnatural pressure on the asphalt as well as the subgrade beneath the asphalt. This pressure along with the pressure of vehicles driving over top of the area begins to weaken the asphalt, which eventually “pops” leaving a void in the asphalt that we think of as a pothole.
Many companies are going to tell you that you need to saw-cut a portion of your parking lot/driveway, remove the damaged portions, then lay brand new asphalt to replace the damaged area. This is true in some cases, SOME!!! But this is definitely not always the true. In most cases, we would rather “recycle” your existing pavement. Recycling is less expensive, less time consuming and you end up with a much better outcome.
1. The first step to recycling your damaged asphalt surface is to clean it really well. We use our high powered blowers and in some cases, our hot air torches to remove any vegetation that may be present.
2. Next, we are going to bring in our “infra-red” machine. This machine heats the asphalt (to 2” below the surface) to 350 degrees.
3. Once the asphalt is hot, it becomes pliable. We rake the pliable asphalt and mix in fresh oils and minerals assuring that the recycled asphalt will hold up for many years to come.
4. After the asphalt is mixed and the new oils are added, we mix in brand new asphalt, grade it, and level it out to the rest of the asphalt surface.
5. We then compact the repaired area with a plate compactor.
6. The repaired area is now ready to be sealed along with the rest of your parking lot/driveway.
Alligator cracking is when you get cracking occurring in a general area that forms to look similar to alligator or fish scales. This is usually a sign of problems with the subgrade. The cause of alligator cracking could be that the subgrade was not flat to begin with or that the subgrade materials have compacted or shifted over time due to a drainage problem. The most cost effective way of dealing with alligator cracking is to seal the surface with an “Alligator Patch.” This option deals with the aesthetics of the cracking and will seal water out. This solution will usually last for several years, and although it is not a permanent solution, may be the best for your situation.