There are several things to think about when you decide to install a new asphalt driveway. One of the most important things to consider is the weather and its long-term effects on your paving project.
Asphalt is a durable material that can last for many years. However, paving or making repairs at the wrong time of year can become an expensive mistake. (Emergency patching can be done at any time, though).
What’s the best time of year to pave an asphalt driveway?
The best time of year to pave asphalt is during the late spring and summer months. Why? Because the ideal temperature for hot paving is usually 70 degrees Fahrenheit or higher.
It is possible to lay asphalt when temperatures are as low as 50 degrees, but you may not get the best results when the temp is this low.
Hot mix asphalt needs a heated truck to keep the asphalt in a liquid state and makes it easy to pour. It can be poured, spread, and leveled off in warm weather while it’s still in this liquid state. It hardens evenly as it cools and forms a durable, long-lasting surface.
In cold weather, though, the temperature of the asphalt quickly drops when it leaves the truck. This can cause the asphalt to thicken too fast, leading to an uneven pour. It may even begin to harden before the job is completed.
Is temperature the only thing that matters?
The temperature isn’t the only weather factor that can affect new asphalt – precipitation is another concern. It’s okay to lay or repair asphalt in a drizzle, but heavy rainfall can cause the asphalt to cool too quickly. This can lead to damage when laying the base layers. So, the dry summer months are an ideal time to install a new asphalt driveway.
Why is the time of year important?
Hot mix asphalt must stay between 175 – 275 degrees Fahrenheit to compact and set properly. Warmer weather will keep the hot mix asphalt pliable and more manageable for longer. You get the best results in warm weather when the asphalt can be poured, spread, and smoothed before it cools. Warmer weather will give your asphalt installers all the time they need to do the best job possible.
What about emergency repairs?
Of course, sometimes emergencies occur, and you can’t wait until spring or summer. If your driveway develops deep cracks, potholes, or other significant signs of structural issues, it’s vital to repair those as soon as possible – even in the middle of winter.
In case of emergencies, cold mix asphalt may be the solution. As the name suggests, cold mix asphalt doesn’t need to be kept hot. It’s mixed in a way that keeps it pliable even in freezing weather. However, it’s typically only a temporary solution. A cold mix patch will get you through the winter but should be replaced with a hot mix repair once the weather warms up.
Contact Premium Asphalt Paving & Sealcoating for Exceptional Service
Now is the perfect time of year to install or repair your driveway or parking lot. We proudly serve central and eastern Texas – including Brenham, Bryan, College Station, Temple, and Waco. Contact us today to talk about your project and get a free estimate. We look forward to working with you!