How Does the Asphalt Driveway Installation Process Work?

asphalt driveway installation

Are you trying to learn more about the asphalt driveway installation process? Check out this post for more info or give us a call for your next project!

Asphalt paving has stood the test of time since it’s inception in 1824. Since then it has paved more than 2 million miles of US roads. Asphalt paving has always been the most eco-friendly paving option, relying on 80% recycled materials.

Asphalt driveway installation is the right fit for any modern USA business and helps create a neat, professional appearance. Here’s what to expect when you decide to get onboard.

Important Pointers for Asphalt Driveway Installation 

If you want to experience the full benefits of asphalt paving, it’s vital to employ a reputable, qualified, and experienced contractor to do the work for you.

Laying asphalt by hand is not a weekend DIY job and can lead to serious problems. When it’s installed incorrectly, asphalt will crack and lift over time, so it pays to leave it to the pros.

Here’s the drill:

1. Removing the Existing Surface

The first step in any paving installation is removing the existing surface with heavy machinery and getting rid of debris.

At this stage any old concrete and asphalt go to the recycling plant. 

2. Preparing the Surface for Drainage

Correct drainage is vital to prevent cracks, heaving, and potholes in your asphalt.

Your contractor uses the latest laser technology to determine the optimum gradient for runoff and then grades the surface appropriately.

3. Sub-Base Preparation

The most important part of any driveway or road paving is making sure the asphalt rests on a stable surface. 

The process involves spreading and compacting a layer of aggregate material, usually recycled concrete or asphalt,  over the designated area. 

4. Proof-Rolling

Next, a heavy truck drives over the surface to compact it further. This reveals any weak spots and allows the contractor to fill them in as needed. 

5. Adding the Binder

Once they’ve repaired any deficiencies, the contractor places a binder layer, made of aggregate mixed with oil, over the top.

This seals the aggregate, creating a durable surface for the asphalt to rest on.  

6. Laying the Asphalt

Finally, they’ll add the top layer of surface asphalt, consisting of sand, oil and small aggregate. These components create the attractive jet-black appearance of freshly laid asphalt. 

As a last step, a roller truck compacts the asphalt to smooth the surface. 

7. Smoothing Transition Areas

Most parking lots or driveways join to another surface, like a road or other areas of old asphalt, at some point. These transition areas require special attention to ensure that any butt joints do not interfere with water runoff. 

Your contractor should take care to ensure that these joins are discrete, creating a smooth flow that does not detract from the professional appearance of your paving. 

As a final touch, the roller truck comes in one last time to compact the transitions into a seamless finish. 

Get a Fresh Look for Your Business

It probably comes as no surprise that installing asphalt is a complex and time-consuming process. It’s one that pays off in the long run though. 

Get in touch with Daley’s Superior Asphalt Manufacturing, Inc. for help and advice for your next asphalt driveway installation project.

Our paving specialists with over 30 years experience provide leading paving services in West Texas.

Give us a call at 806-744-2592 or contact us by form for any questions you may have, more information, and a free quote.

When is the Best Time for Laying Asphalt and Paving a Driveway?

laying asphalt pavementCertain times are better than others when it comes to laying asphalt and paving driveways or parking lots. Find out more about the right time to pave below.

When alligator cracks or potholes plague your asphalt driveway in the middle of winter what do you do? Either you brave the potholes and risk your alignment, or you avoid parking in the driveway altogether. Neither is a practical or convenient solution.

While winter isn’t the ideal time for laying asphalt, it’s also not the worst time of year for your paving project.

Paving happens all year long, but the weather does matter. Take a minute and read about the best time to redo a driveway.

Asphalt Likes It Warm

Even here in Texas where winters are usually mild, it does get cold enough to delay paving projects, but it isn’t only air temperature that matters. Ground temperature matters too.

Generally, the magic number is 50.

Most asphalt applications need both ambient (air) and ground temperatures of a minimum of 50 degrees Fahrenheit. Ideally, the temperatures should rise above 50 degrees during the installation and compaction processes.

Why does temperature matter?

Keep in mind the texture of asphalt during installation. It’s wet and slightly lumpy. The paving crew uses a range of tools, including rollers to smooth and compact the asphalt. If the asphalt pavement cools too quickly, you’ll end up with a rough surface that retains water.

While air and ground temperature matters, so do the temperature of the asphalt mix.

How Hot Is Hot Asphalt?

Judging by its name—Hot Mix Asphalt (HMA)—you’ve figured out you’re dealing with heat, right? What you might not know is asphalt plants mix this product at 275-350 degrees Fahrenheit.

Not only is this asphalt product mixed at a hot temperature, but it must also stay hot during the paving and compaction process. If air and ground temperatures don’t rise during installation, you’re at risk of rapid cooling.

Perhaps you’ve also heard of cold mix asphalt and you’re wondering why we can’t use it to pave your driveway.

While cold mix asphalt does work well for repairing small cracks and potholes it’s not as strong as HMA. It’s mainly used as a temporary patch until temperatures warm up enough to use the hot mix product.

The Ideal Time for Laying Asphalt

While we can’t lay asphalt in the rain, we can still pave a driveway during the winter months if the ground isn’t frozen.

That said, unless you have an emergency situation where you can’t use your driveway due to large potholes, you may want to wait until spring or fall. This ensures warmer air and ground temperatures.

The reason paving crews can’t install asphalt during or immediately after a rainstorm is because of the way temperature affects how HMA flows. If the mix can’t flow, it also won’t compact the right way. Without proper compaction, your driveway won’t last as long.

Need to Schedule a Paving Project?

Now that you know more about how air and ground temperature affects the way asphalt paving products work, you can start planning the best time for your paving project.

If your driveway, parking lot or other surface needs help, call us at 806-744-2592 or contact us by form for advice and a free quote.

At Daley’s Superior Asphalt Manufacting, Inc., we’ve been providing the best asphalt paving in West Texas for over 30 years, including in Lubbock, Odessa, and Midland paving.

We can discuss if now is the best time for specific asphalt services or if we need to use another method for repair.