When it comes to asphalt vs. blacktop, what’s the difference? If you’re feeling unclear, read here to learn more about these two common surface mixtures.

Is there even a difference?

You’ve driven on both asphalt and blacktop, probably not knowing one from the other. As long as the road is smooth and gets you to work on time, you don’t think twice.

If you are curious about the two, then it’s helpful to know there is, in fact, a difference. It can be tricky to tell, but there are key contrasts to note.

Keep reading below to discover more about asphalt vs. blacktop surfaces.

Are the Ingredients Different?

The ingredients are exactly the same. This statement probably leaves you more confused about how the two are different. 

When it comes to asphalt vs. blacktop, the ingredients are the same but the way they are measured out and brought together are different.

The two main ingredients in both are crushed stone and bitumen. Bitumen is a viscous fluid and very thick. It’s used heavily in the construction industry.

In asphalt, the crushed stone is held together by the bitumen. It’s plenty strong enough for all cars and vehicles that drive over it, but it is malleable. 

When it comes to blacktop, there’s a higher ratio of crushed stone. It also has to be mixed at a higher temperature than asphalt. Blacktop isn’t as durable as asphalt.

What Are the Uses?

Since asphalt is more flexible than blacktop, it can be used for intricate paving projects like winding driveways. It’s also fairly water-resistant so it can be used to line pools. You’ll also see it used for airport runways.

Because blacktop isn’t as durable as asphalt, you’ll see blacktop used in more residential areas. There are plenty of pathways, playgrounds, and simple driveways that use blacktop. You can pick it apart from asphalt because it appears shinier in the sun.

Which One is Better?

Deciding which material is better is a situational decision. It depends on what project you’re doing and where you’re doing it.

For areas with less traffic, it can be better to use blacktop. If there’s going to be a lot of heavyweight vehicles going back and forth, go with asphalt. You can also use asphalt to seal cracks in driveways. 

Asphalt is also much smoother due to the lower amount of crushed rock and creates less wear on tires. Take this into consideration if you’re trying to choose between the two for a project. 

Know the Difference: Asphalt vs. Blacktop

When you’re late for class, you don’t really care what you’re driving on as long as it gets you there safely and quickly. It’s all the same. However, if you do start looking at asphalt vs. blacktop, you’ll start to notice differences.

Both are made with the same materials, but they are put together differently. When deciding which one to use, construction or paving specialists have to look at the environment and daily situations. Generally, asphalt has proven to be better in high traffic areas while blacktop is great for quiet, residential areas.

Looking to get quality paving work done? Contact us at 806-407-7297 to schedule an inspection and get a free quote.

Daley’s Superior Asphalt Manufacturing, Inc. provides trusted Lubbock paving solutions, as well as paving in Midland, Odessa, nearby West Texas areas, and the Eastern New Mexico region.

 

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