Asphalt surfaces can last for years, but that doesn't mean that they don't need some maintenance along the way. A surface with cracks, depressions or other damage doesn't necessarily need to be entirely replaced, but it does need to receive attention before problems become more serious.
Asphalt milling and resurfacing is a middle-ground approach to repairing pavement. It provides a more thorough repair than patches, which are best for minor damage, but it is not as major a project as laying entirely new pavement. If your asphalt driveway, parking lot, sidewalk, patio or road could use a facelift, consider our milling and resurfacing services.
What Is Milling?
In addition to being a sufficient repair process for many types of pavement damage, another advantage of milling and resurfacing is that it maintains the current grade of your property. Your asphalt is refreshed, and your drainage system continues to work just as it always has. To achieve this goal, the top layer of your current surface must be removed before the new layer of asphalt is laid.
Using an asphalt milling machine, backhoe, forklift or other equipment, the top layer of asphalt is broken into pieces and removed from the ground. A milling machine grinds the chunks into small pieces. Asphalt can be recycled, so the ground-up pieces won't go to waste. Instead, they are hauled away and repurposed into reclaimed asphalt pavement at an asphalt plant.
Milling is especially important around the edges of a paved surface because it helps maintain the right slope between the asphalt and the surrounding material. This type of work is often known as edge milling or transitional milling. In fact, in some situations, only the edges of the surface require milling. The rest of the asphalt can be resurfaced without first having to lift up the old pavement.
Other times, however, the entire surface must receive this treatment before continuing with the resurfacing process. This is often the case when the asphalt shows a good deal of wear and tear, such as bumps, damage, cracks, pits, or fire or water damage. Our expert team can advise you about how much milling is required for your paving job.
What Is Resurfacing?
After milling comes resurfacing, which involves putting down a layer of asphalt. The new layer is usually 1.5 to 2 inches in depth. After the resurfacing job is finished, your pavement will look brand new.
However, before laying the hot-mix asphalt, more preparation work must be done. If needed, the base layer is compacted to strength it and even it out. Plus, it is important to begin the paving process with a clean surface, so all milling debris is cleared away.
Once the surface is ready, a tack coat is put down over the area that is to be resurfaced. Even if milling was not required for the entire surface, every spot that is going to receive new asphalt must be prepared with a tack coat. This important step helps the new asphalt adhere to the old material that is beneath it.
Finally, hot-mix asphalt is laid over the tack coat. As with brand-new asphalt jobs, the freshly laid asphalt is compacted to create a smooth surface. Compacting the asphalt also presses out air bubbles; this strengthens the pavement, guards it against water damage, and helps maintain its integrity over time. Compaction is usually done with a vibratory roller while the asphalt is still hot.
Is your asphalt pavement ready for the new life that milling and resurfacing can provide? Contact our expert paving team to find out whether milling and resurfacing is right for your paved surface.