Paving Terms and FAQs

Learn what common paving terms mean and get answers to common questions!

How is paving defined?

Paving is laying down an asphalt surface on either dirt, milled or existing asphalt surface. When paving, many factors must be considered including, leveling, water drainage, and thickness of the new asphalt layer. The term paving can be applied to concrete as well.

How is milling defined?

Milling is the process of grinding up and collecting old asphalt. A mill machine leaves a solid but ridged surface to be paved over. The old asphalt or millings can be recycled. About 90% of all asphalt is recycled from millings.

How is asphalt defined?

Asphalt concrete is a mixture of sand, gravel, mineral aggregate and a binding agent called bitumen. It is also known as blacktop and is commonly measured in tons.

How is sealcoat defined?

Sealcoat is a mixture of emulsified asphalt, water, mineral fillers, and various other mixtures. Seal coats are applied directly to the surface of an asphalt pavement. It can be applied by rubber squeegee, broom, or mechanical spray.

What is sealed crack sealant?

Crack seal is a rubber based sealant applied to asphalt cracks at very high temperatures. There are width and depth limitations for crack sealing applications, but it is an effective preventative maintenance measure.

How much does paving cost?

The cost of paving depends on several factors such as the start-to-finish timeline and the total square footage. Paving is generally around $2 cheaper per square foot than poured concrete.

Is 2 inches of asphalt enough for my driveway?

Generally, asphalt thickness needed to be between 4 and 6 inches in thickness. If asphalt is not paved thick enough, there is a chance that harsh weather conditions and heavy loads can be damaging. Around 8 inches of compacted aggregate (gravel) below the asphalt will increase the overall durability of paved surfaces.

How long do asphalt driveways last?

If executed correctly, asphalt driveways can last up to 20 years or more. Two main factors to take into consideration when determining an asphalt driveway’s lifespan would be the average weather conditions the driveway endures and also the average heavy payloads. A driveway that regularly experiences harsh weather conditions and heavy semi-truck payloads may not last as long as a driveway that is driven on by average cars and experiences mild weather conditions. Also, along with those two factors, maintenance is key when it comes to ensuring your asphalt driveway lasts as long as possible.

What are the benefits of asphalt?

Asphalt very durable and also cost-effective when compared to concrete. It can last 20 years or more if maintained properly and can be recycled and resurfaced. Asphalt driveways often increase the value of homes and business offices as well, which can be considered a plus to many.

Does resurfacing asphalt require complete removal?

No, it does not. One significant perk of asphalt maintenance is the fact that it does not require removal to be resurfaced.

How do I know if my parking lot is in need of pavement maintenance or a full mill and pave?

It really depends on the current condition of your parking lot. Applying sealcoat to a severely failing parking lot will not preserve or protect it, just like using paint to fill a crack in your home’s foundation, won’t work. It covers the problem but doesn’t fix it. The same applies to asphalt. Weathered asphalt that is dull and gray with shallow cracks but is structurally sound can be revitalized through a pavement maintenance program that includes crack sealing, sealcoating and a fresh line stripe. It also extends the life of your asphalt. A failing lot has many indicators a full repave is in order. If your lot has poor drainage and standing water has seeped in and caused instability, there are multiple continuous cracks and places with crumbling or buckled asphalt, or there’s
multiple patches and recurrent repair, then it’s probably time to mill and pave.

How often should I evaluate the condition of my parking lots?

You should thoroughly evaluate your lot every calendar year. Traffic, severe weather with extreme temperature changes and plow damage takes its toll on your asphalt. You should spot check your lot at least once every season, particularly after winter going into spring.

What should I be looking for when I evaluate my parking lot?

Check your lot for trip hazards like cracks, potholes, crumbled sections, and other liabilities. Your lot should be clearly marked, ADA compliant and also meet local safety and fire codes. The surface should be even and drains should be cleared of debris. There should be no significant puddles or “perma-puddles” on your property.

When is the best time to address my parking lot issues?

Today! The longer you wait, the more complex (read: expensive) the solution will be. There are many instances when short-term fixes will be appropriate. Do not confuse that approach with a proactive pavement maintenance program executed over time. Save time and money and prolong the life of your existing asphalt by addressing your parking lot issues today.

How much do your services cost?

There are many variables that determine final costs. The size and condition of the lot are the two most important factors. The needed scope or scopes also factor prominently. National Pavement is among the most competitive paving and pavement maintenance contractors in the country. We work within your budget while providing quality workmanship and outstanding customer service. It all begins with the evaluation so don’t delay.

Should I get multiple estimates before choosing a paving or pavement maintenance contractor?

Of course, budgets rule the day but don’t forget to do your homework and ask questions. The lowest bid may end up costing more in the end due to work that needs to be redone or even unethical practices, while the highest bid doesn’t guarantee the best results. Choosing a reputable, experienced contractor means you have a true partner dedicated to successful outcomes. Call us for an evaluation, a bid request or just to ask a question. The team at Nation Pavement is ready to answer your questions and get to work.

Contact National Pavement with Questions!

If you still have questions or are ready to get a free quote, the team at National Pavement is here to help! Fill out the form below to get started.

Contact National Pavement

lf you want to work with a company you can trust to manage your asphalt paving needs,reach out to National Pavement today!