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The Benefits of Crack Sealing Asphalt

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Last Updated on December 8, 2023

Asphalt pavement is a big investment, and it can last for decades if it’s well maintained. If your maintenance budget is limited, crack sealing is the single most effective and beneficial thing you can do to preserve your investment. Although asphalt cracks are inevitable, if they’re sealed properly, water isn’t able to penetrate the asphalt surface, and a wide variety of problems are prevented.

When water seeps through asphalt cracks, the base and sub-grade below are eroded, which destroys the load-bearing capacity of the pavement. Over time, more cracks will form, and you’ll see potholes, sinkholes, and fatigue cracking (also referred to as alligator cracking.) If left untreated, each of these issues can eventually create a large enough problem that the asphalt will need to be removed and replaced.

Types of Asphalt Cracks and Repair Methods
Both shrinkage cracks and stress cracks require slightly different repair methods for maximum effectiveness.

  • Shrinkage cracks are the most common and are caused by asphalt drying out due to oxidation. These cracks begin as hairline cracks on the asphalt surface and work their way down, eventually allowing water to penetrate, saturate, and erode the base material. Shrinkage cracks can be prevented before they form with sealcoat and fog seal. Sealcoat prevents shrinkage cracks by protecting the asphalt surface from water and sun damage. Fog seal prevents shrinkage cracks by restoring oils and increasing asphalt flexibility.
  • Stress cracks are formed when the asphalt and base are inadequate for the weight they’re holding. When the base is eroded or soft, the weight on the pavement causes cracks to begin forming on the underside of the asphalt. It’s common for stress cracks to form along road edges, in front of dumpsters, and in drive lanes. Because stress cracks originate below the asphalt surface, crack seal has limited effectiveness, and an asphalt patch may be a better option.


A good rule of thumb is that if a #2 pencil fits in the crack, it should be treated. Hairline cracks smaller than 1/4″ are too narrow to grip the asphalt crack sealer or allow significant amounts of moisture to penetrate. Wider cracks can be effectively treated with a climate appropriate, hot-applied rubberized crack sealer. When cracks are sealed properly, further damage can frequently be prevented, and extensive repair or repaving projects can be avoided.

Top Job Asphalt uses top quality crack sealants that are engineered to withstand the low temperatures of northern climates and the high temperatures of harsh, hot southern climates. Nuvo crack sealants by Maxwell Products employ inteliBond technology, which has set a new standard for quality and innovation in the crack seal industry.

Although asphalt cracking is bound to happen, Top Job Asphalt has the experience and skill to help you tackle any problem you may encounter. If you need asphalt maintenance or repair, contact us today for a free, no-obligation estimate.

 

 

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6 Comments

  1. Thank you for the post on the secrets behind the best asphalt crack repair. I like the idea to check with a pencil the size of the cracks. Sealcoating is a great way to treat cracks before they get too big and need a full repair and a good way to prevent cracks.

    Reply
  2. Thank you for the post on the secrets behind the best asphalt crack repair. I like your handy tip to check with a pencil if the crack needs to be treated or not. I definitely think a crack should be treated as soon as possible so it doesn’t result in pieces breaking and causing potholes which can damage vehicles.

    Reply
  3. The parking lot at my office is being repaved and I heard some people discussing whether or not to sealcoat it. I didn’t know what sealcoating is or how it would help so I decided to look into it. It’s very interesting that sealcoating can help protect against spills by filling surface voids.

    Reply
  4. We’re thinking of whether or not to repair the asphalt driveway, and since you mentioned that it is a big investment, then I guess we’ll hire someone to do it. You did say that there are different types of asphalt cracks and repair methods that I need to assess if I will do it alone, but since I can’t spend some time to do that, I’ll just hire a professional to fix it. Since you suggested that if a #2 pencil fits in the crack then it should be treated, I’ll see if this is the case for the driveway so I will save time.

    Reply
  5. I like how you mentioned a good rule of thumb is if a pencil fits down the crack in the asphalt it needs to be a seal or repaired. Cracks can eventually lead to potholes… no one really likes potholes. I will have to mention this to the city cause I have some pencil fitting cracks just down my road.

    Reply

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Mike Phillips
Mike Phillips
January 17, 2023.
Great company to work with. We contacted Top Job to repair a county road that we dug across for an irrigation line. They were very professional yet friendly. Our job was completed quickly. We recommend this company.
Sam Rowley
Sam Rowley
December 8, 2022.
I’m not sure how the service actually is, but some old guy in a Top Job Toyota was riding my butt today and flipped me off, or it was maybe an aggressive wave at the red light near the Logan library. Hope his day gets better. 12/8 at 230
Kim Rappleye
Kim Rappleye
December 7, 2022.
Very professional and personalized service. Highly recommended!
Mark Malmstrom
Mark Malmstrom
November 22, 2022.
They were easy to get a hold of and showed up when they were scheduled. Good communication and good work.
David Bunnell
David Bunnell
November 4, 2022.
I appreciated the pleasant attitude when talking w/the estimator as well as the scheduler. The work crew did a great job! I highly recommend Top Job Asphalt!
Steven Jacobsen
Steven Jacobsen
October 30, 2022.
Top job Asphalt did an amazing job on my project very professional, I would definitely use them again when I have the need.
Chris Salvesen
Chris Salvesen
October 28, 2022.
Did a great job on the 3" overlay for my very old and deteriorated half circle driveway. Looks brand new. All the transitions to concrete are near perfectly matched when I wasn't sure they could do it. It's almost weird now not feeling the bump driving out of the garage or over our bridge.
Matt Welch
Matt Welch
October 27, 2022.
Top Job paved our asphalt driveways and we couldn't be happier. The service, quality and price were the best I could find and I looked everywhere! Great job guys! I'll be calling back when I start my next project.
Todd Wardrop
Todd Wardrop
October 26, 2022.
I'm so impressed!!😀 Top Job has done such excellent work on my neighbor's driveway ... I'm so jealous. It's absolutely beautiful, and I can't believe how smooth it turned out. It's just perfect. What a great company!

What Our Customers Are Saying

Very impressed with the quality of their work and the organization of the company. The project estimator was spot on as to when the bid would be received and the work was professional  from start to finish. I appreciated the opportunity for a walkthrough inspection after the crack filling was completed as I had some very large cracks in the asphalt. I give this company a ten out of ten (which I really do) and highly recommend them.

Paul Pratt