Asphalt pavements are widely used for roads, parking lots, industrial surfaces, recreational surfaces, and walking trails. Along with being a durable and flexible material to work with, asphalt is also cost-effective and easily maintainable, which makes it an ideal choice for nearly every asphalt pavement project.
Here’s a quick guide on how asphalt is made and why it so beneficial.
The Asphalt Recipe
Asphalt pavements are made by combining coarse and fine aggregate and recycled asphalt pavement (RAP) to a particular recipe and then adding asphalt cement as the black sticky glue that holds the pavement together. The combination of coarse and fine aggregates is very important to the structure and strength of the pavement. Each recipe needs to allow for the asphalt to be compacted appropriately to the expected traffic load using the pavement.
Asphalt cement is a dark heavy mixture of hydrocarbons, also called bitumen, that is extracted as a byproduct of gasoline production (crude oil distillation). Asphalt cement is a durable material resistant to harsh chemicals and extreme weather. Different grades of asphalt cement are used to increase the performance of asphalt pavements, so be sure to ask Bituminous Roadways about your options.
Asphalt cement is solid (or very, very viscous) at room temperature, but when heated, asphalt cement turns to a liquid. Therefore, the coarse and fine aggregate and RAP along with the asphalt cement have to be heated to about 300°F before being mixed together in a large rotating drum mixer.
The asphalt pavement mixture is transported as quickly as possible to the project location and is installed at the proper thickness and slope using an asphalt paver before it has time to cool. Lastly, as the pavement cools, several compaction rollers are used to densify the asphalt pavement.
What Projects Can Benefit From Asphalt Pavement?
Asphalt pavements are ideal for paving roads, parking lots, airport runways, walking trails, tennis courts or any other small or large-scale projects where a smooth flat surface is required. So, whether you’re planning an asphalt project for a private business, industrial, retail area, or multi family living project asphalt pavement has many benefits and can be used for various purposes.
Streets & Highways
Because Minnesota deals with temperature extremes, roadways in the state need to be able to withstand inclement weather. With asphalt cement being so durable, it’s ideal for all kinds of roads in the area, including streets, highways, and more. Learn more about our highway and roadway projects here.
Just like with roads, parking lots in Minnesota need to handle temperature extremes. The summers can be extremely hot while winters are snowy and cold. Because asphalt pavement is able to handle these temperature variations, it will last well in parking lots, even those that are used regularly. Try asphalt for any large or small parking lot project.
Outdoor Athletic Surfaces
While you might associate asphalt primarily with roads and parking lots, this material is versatile enough for use in many other projects. Outdoor athletic surfaces of all kinds use asphalt cement. In fact, asphalt is common for outdoor basketball courts, tennis courts, pickleball courts, running tracks, and more.
Trails & Pathways
If you’re in charge of community planning or just looking to add a pathway to your apartment complex, senior living facility, retail site or business, asphalt pavement will withstand use and various weather conditions. Because it’s sturdy enough to handle vehicles, you can trust asphalt works well for pedestrians and cyclists.
What Are the Benefits of Asphalt Pavements?
If you’re still wondering about the benefits of asphalt pavements, let’s look closer at some of the specific benefits. And, if you have questions, reach out to one of our team members today.
Asphalt surfaces are perfect for driving on because they provide a safe, smooth, and quiet surface for vehicles traveling at higher speeds. Asphalt can also reduce splashing and spraying from tires during precipitation, reducing collisions on the highway.
When asphalt is produced, it is moldable. This allows the asphalt pave to lay-down asphalt in a continuous fast-paced process, keeping the initial costs low. The use of recycled asphalt pavement in asphalt mixtures also keeps the price down. Additionally, there are many different types of pavement maintenance techniques that can extend the life of your asphalt at a reasonable price.
Asphalt is a recyclable product. In the United States, the asphalt industry recycles almost 100 million tons of asphalt pavement annually for reuse in other areas. This saves taxpayers nearly $2 billion per year in road costs.
Asphalt pavements can be designed for low, medium or high-volume traffic. With routine maintenance, asphalt can last 15-20 years.
Asphalt can be used for a wide range of projects. In addition to roads, parking lots, and trails, it's also used for roofing material, ramps, bicycle paths, and even on bridges.
Because asphalt does not require extra time to cure, drivers can use newly paved roadways and parking lots almost immediately. This means fewer delays for drivers and customers.
Once asphalt is installed, it’s important to keep up on preventative maintenance. Just as you would visit your local mechanic for an oil change on your vehicle, so should you consider seal coating, cracksealing and repairing potholes when they arise. If you do these things, your will see a better return on your investment in the long run.
Bituminous Roadways, Inc. Can Help With Your Next Project!
When you work with Bituminous Roadways, Inc., you’ll get assistance from a company that uses its very own aggregate mining and processing. We also provide liquid asphalt cement modification.
When deciding to launch your project, Bituminous Roadways can help you every step of the way. With more than 75 years of asphalt industry experience, we have the training and skill necessary to perform all jobs, large and small.
When deciding to launch your project, Bituminous Roadways can help you every step of the way from layout design to finishing and detailing the asphalt surface. With more than 700 years of combined field experience, we have the training and skill necessary to perform all jobs, large and small.
If you are looking for asphalt installation, repair, or surface replacement, contact Bituminous Roadways. We are a full-service asphalt contractor providing a wide range of services and products for industrial and commercial business owners in the Twin Cities Metro area, including underground utilities and concrete work. Call us today at 651-686-7001 for a free estimate and consultation.