What is the Best Way to Fix a Pothole?

pothole in the road collecting water

The dreaded pothole

As you’re driving down the road and your car hits a pothole (or actually, your car “falls into” a pothole), and then another and another, etcetera, etcetera, do you wonder to yourself “who pays for pothole repair and why aren’t they repairing these?”, isn’t part of your property taxes go towards pothole repair? Or is there a pothole repair company to call? 

No doubt about it, potholes are an evil that we must deal with every day, no matter where you live, work, or even in your own driveway. Potholes are here to stay folks, even if just for a short while. Just how much do you know about potholes and how pothole repairs are done? Probably not as much as you think, and we will answer some commonly asked questions with answers that will educate and inform you about these menaces. 

What is the best way to fix a pothole? 

Potholes typically are created by the roadways freezing and thawing. A crack gets started, water seeps under the top layer of asphalt, freezes, and thaws. Drivers are playing “dodge the pothole” or driving right through it and damaging the front-end or blowing out tires. 

Almost every day, you can find either a city road crew, county road crew, or state road crew patching potholes. The standard method used for pothole repair to dump a shovel or two of asphalt and go on to the next pothole. This method is an accepted and widely used one. Low tech – yes. Fast – yes. Effective – yes, for the time being. 

Just as with anything, there are improvements out there, such as infrared technology. This is using infrared heating panels that pre-heat the pothole and the surrounding area. The pothole is filled with warmed asphalt and the pothole and that surrounding area are raked then flattened by a roller.

Because the process is heating the road and the existing pavement around it, it creates a thermal bond, eliminating a cold joint where the patch doesn’t adhere. This eliminates any chance of water seeping under the asphalt to freeze, thaw, and reopen the pothole. While this method is new and hasn’t gone widespread yet, hopefully, it will one day make its way to your road with pothole repairs that last.

When it comes to how to repair a pothole in the gravel driveway and how to repair a pothole in an asphalt driveway, while it still a matter of water seeping under the upper layer as we described above, the pothole repair process is different.

  • You first need to be certain that there isn’t any foreign debris and loose stones in the hole. While you may think anything in the hole will fill it towards pothole repair, it also makes it difficult to level the driveway.
  • Next, you want the sides to be solid, so if they aren’t with a shovel, dig down around the sides until you reach a solid edge. This will make sure the filler gets compacted in the hole.
  • Once you have cleared the hole of debris and firmed the sides, fill the pothole with coarse gravel, leaving 3 inches from the top empty for a gravel driveway and 4 inches for a dirt driveway. Pack the gravel down with a 4×4 wooden post or steel tamper.  or a 4×4 wooden post.
  • Water the area down and compact some more in the same method described above. Repeat this process of pack/wet/pack until you have compacted the dirt to the level desired. If your driveway is gravel, fill those 3 inches with matching gravel, creating a small mound that will be smoothed to blend with the surrounding area, then rack and blend.

What are the 5 construction methods used to fix potholes?

To make the roadways better and less bumpy, there are 5 different construction methods that are used for pothole repairs, making for a smoother future. The process needs to start with asphaltic patch materials that contain an aggregate and a binder available in cold or hot forms at the asphalt plant. 

  • Throw-and-roll: This is the most basic and common method for pothole repair. The asphaltic patch materials are placed into the pothole and packed down, usually by driving a heavy vehicle back and forth over it. This method has a high rate of failure, meaning the hole will reopen in a short time. 
  • Semi-permanent: This is a better method than the name suggests for pothole repairs. The pothole is cleared of any debris and water and the sides are trimmed back so they are a clean cut. Then the patch mix material is placed in the hole, packed down using a vibratory plate or vibratory roller.
  • Spray-injection: This method requires specialized equipment. Any debris or water is blown out of the hole and then a tacky binder coat is sprayed on the bottom and sides of the pothole. Next, an aggregate and asphalt are blown into the pothole and covered with an aggregate layer.
  • Edge seal: The throw-and-roll repair method is used for pothole repairs by filling the hole and it is compacted down by a heavy vehicle. It is finished off by laying a ribbon of tacky asphaltic material along the edges so that the patch and surrounding payment are overlapped. Sand is then spread of the tacky product so that cars can drive over it.
  • Full-depth roadway: This has proven to be the most efficient method for pothole repairs, it is also a complex method. The process begins by pulverizing the old asphalt, mix it with cement and water, and compact it to create a base that will have asphalt or concrete. In the end, it is replacing old pavement with new pavement that is made of recycled pavement.

How much does it cost to fix a pothole?

This is an age-old question, probably as old as having roads became standard. And the answer is different depending on who you ask. It is dependent on which of the methods we’ve discussed in this article is used, or some other method. It depends on the location and the size of the hole.  Here are some general numbers regarding the cost of pothole repair:

  • The American Society of Civil engineers estimates to repair the highways and bridges in this country, the cost is just under $3 trillion.
  • Vehicle repairs are the number one result of potholes for replacing/repair ribs, shocks, struts, frontend alignment per person, average $400 a year per driver.
  • American business is expected to lose as much as $200 billing by 2022 due to bad roads.

Can you fix potholes in the winter?

You know how you need to do preventive maintenance all along for your home to make sure bigger problems aren’t created – like roof repair? The same would be if we build roads in a way that pothole repairs wouldn’t be an issue.

Unfortunately, that’s not where we are, so to answer the question: Winter weather impedes pothole repairs. However, there is a temporary fix using a cold patch asphalt. So, yes, depending on whether the road is covered in ice or snow, a temporary fix is possible. 

A patch over a pothole

Can you fix potholes yourself? 

In your own driveway, yes. On public roadways and streets, no. Believe it or not, being a good Samaritan and using your own materials to complete a pothole repair on a road you travel can get your fined, ticketed, and in some cases, thrown in jail. Why? 

Well, first, you pay taxes for this to be done, remember? Second, it is a safety issue. What if you’re bent over doing pothole repair and an inattentive driver comes flying down the road, looks at their cell phone for a split second?  You guessed it, not a pretty ending for you or that person, and it also opens the city/county/state up for lawsuits. 

Okay, so if the city, county, and state would just do what they say they will do with the money we pay in taxes and do the pothole repair, that would make life easier. However, it doesn’t look like it will happen overnight. So, what can you do, since you can’t make pothole repairs on your own? Attend community meetings, vote your voice for those you believe will take this problem seriously. Other than that, be aware, drive slower and encourage others to do the same. Reach out to eSquared Asphalt Maintenance for pothole repair in Waco and Temple, TX by dialling 254-716-8685.

Can Broken Concrete Be Repaired?

A Cracked Concrete Sidewalk.

Concrete Repair Vs Replacement

One of the biggest issues that you will see with concrete sidewalks, driveways, and even parking lots is that they can crack. If cracks form in concrete, then they will just get worse over time. The best solution for this is getting concrete repair. A lot of people ask, “What is concrete repair?” is when a contractor repairs concrete that has broken or become damaged over time. When it comes to concrete cracks, there is the choice to either repair or replace the concrete. If the damage is not too extensive, then its better to just repair the concrete. In situations where the concrete is incredibly damaged and cracked, then concrete replacement might be the best solution. When it comes to repairing concrete, you can either seal it or patch it. Another thing that people ask is, “What is concrete patching?”concrete patching is when that specific area is patched up with repairs. If there are concrete cracks or the concrete is broken, then these are the steps to repair it.

  • Break Away the Concrete Crack: You will want to make the crack wider using a chisel; you will also want to remove any loose concrete.
  • Remove Rubble From Concrete Crack: Use a wire brush and an industrial vacuum to remove rubble, dust, and other debris from the crack.
  • Get Patching Compound Ready: After your clean and remove debris from the cracks, then you will want to mix your patching compound.
  • Put Patching Compound in Concrete Crack: Start putting the patching compound into the cracks and make sure the compound is deep in the cracks.
  • Smooth the Patching Compound: Smooth out the compound so the surface of the concrete is smooth, or use a tool to give the concrete some texture.
  • Allow Patching Compound to Cure: Based on the patching compound directions, you will want to let it cure.
  • Seal the Area: To make sure that the patching is protected, you will want to seal it for extra protection.

Concrete Repair for Driveway

Concrete driveways see a lot of wear and tear due to cars driving on them, as well as constant contact with outside elements. If you have issues with your concrete driveway, you might be wondering “Can you repair concrete driveway?” If the damage isn’t substantial, then concrete driveways can be repaired. When the concrete is too damaged, then it need to be completely replaced or resurfaced. Below are common issues with concrete driveways and how they can be repaired.

How Do I Fix My Crumbling Driveway?

If you notice that you concrete is starting to crumble, then you will want to get it repaired right away. The first step to repairing a crumbling concrete driveway is to remove the crumbling concrete and the use a high pressure hose to wash away any dust or debris. The next thing you will want to do is apply either a bonding or primer agent onto the surface of the concrete. After it is applied look at the directions to see how long the curing process is. Once it has dried, then you will want to apply repair mortar. Spread it over the area and make sure its nice and smooth.

How Do You Repair Hairline Cracks in Concrete Driveway?

Hairline cracks in your driveway aren’t as severe as big cracks, but it is still important to repair them right away. The good thing about repairing hairline cracks in concrete is that it doesn’t require specialty equipment. If there is any loose concrete around the cracks, then you will want to clear that away, as well as use a brush and vacuum to remove dust and other debris from the cracks. After the cracks have been cleared away and cleaned of loose concrete, then you will want to use a masonry crack filler or a concrete patching compound to fill in the hairline cracks. When the cracks have been filled in, you will use an instrument to smooth the filler or compound so that its smooth and flesh with the surface of the concrete.

Can Old Concrete Be Resurfaced?

Cones and Caution Tape Around a Finished Concrete Project.

Does Resurfacing Concrete Last?

If you have an old concrete driveway, sidewalk, or parking lot and are wondering if resurfacing would work to make it look brand new, the answer is yes! It will basically be the same process as concrete repair, but you’ll be using a resurfacer over damages and cracks. If concrete resurfacing is done correctly, then it should be able to extend the life of your concrete sidewalk, parking lot, or driveway. If you are in the market for concrete repair in Waco and Temple, TX, then you can call eSquared Asphalt Maintenance at 254-716-8685! Just like you need a roofer when you are needing metal roofing, you will need professional technicians who know how to perform concrete repair service the right way. Fortunately, our team has the experience and skills to offer the best concrete services in the area. Give us a call to schedule an appointment today!

What Lasts Longer Asphalt Or Concrete?

A Picture of an Empty Parking Space in an Asphalt Parking Lot.

Which One Will Work for Your Parking Lot?

Are you looking to have a parking lot installed at a grocery store, convenient store, office building, or a shopping center? You might be wondering if you should consider an asphalt parking lot or concrete parking lot. Many people ask what is asphalt parking lot and a concrete parking lot. An asphalt parking lot is when a parking lot is filled and paved with asphalt, where a concrete parking lot is when a parking lot is filled and paved with concrete. When you invest in a parking lot, you want to make sure you are choosing the right material, which is why a lot of people ask which one lasts longer, asphalt or concrete. Concrete is going to last longer than asphalt by five or 10 years. Concrete parking lots can last up to 20 or 40 years, while asphalt parking lots last 15 to 30 years. The lifespan of a parking lot is important, but it’s also important to consider other factors. Although concrete is going to last longer and is durable, asphalt parking lots cost less and when they reach their lifespan there is no need to remove the base, as it can be resurfaced. Choosing between the two will depend on what you are looking for in a parking lot.

Asphalt Vs Gravel Parking Lot

Another option that people consider when selecting a material for their parking lot is gravel versus asphalt. When it comes to parking lots, asphalt tends to be a lot better than gravel. A lot of people love gravel for driveways, but they tend to not work that well for parking lots. This is because the surface isn’t as smooth and requires more maintenance. Asphalt, on the other hand, is a wonderful parking lot option. Here are some of the benefits of asphalt parking lots.

  • Easy Installation: Installing an asphalt parking lot doesn’t take a lot of time (only a few days) so its an easy and quick installation.
  • Cost-Effective: Because of how quick it is to install an asphalt parking lot, it can make this option more affordable.
  • Eco-Friendly: Asphalt is considered an eco-friendly choice because asphalt can be recycled and reused.
  • Reduce Noise: You are able to reduce the noise of traffic when you choose asphalt for your parking lot.
  • Increases Safety: Because of the smooth pavement and contrast of white lines on the asphalt, it can make it easier for drivers to see where to park and drive.

Does Sealing Asphalt Extend Life?

We all want to do what it takes to extend our asphalt parking lots, which is why a lot of people invest in sealcoating. Just like roof coatings are used to protect the surface of the roof, sealcoating protects the surface of a parking lot. It’s actually not too necessary, but it can do a lot for your asphalt parking lot. Sealing the surface of an asphalt parking lot, it can protect the asphalt from ice, oxygen, rain, ice, and fluids from your cars like gas, oil, or antifreeze. These things can make asphalt parking lots brittle and crack, but with seal coating, you can prevent this from happening and increase the lifespan of the parking lot.

How Often Should You Repave a Parking Lot?

When you have a broken asphalt parking lot, you might be wondering if it needs to be repaved. Repaving an asphalt parking lot is going to depend on a few factors. Asphalt parking lot repaving should be considered when the parking lot is 20 or 30 years old, the underlying base is damaged, or it would take too much time to patch damaged areas. If your asphalt parking lot is coming up on 20 years or more, it might be a good idea to call someone to have it repaved.

What Is Resurfacing Parking Lot?

A Picture of a Car Parked at an Asphalt Parking Lot.

How Much Does It Cost to Resurface a Parking Lot?

While repaving a parking lot requires removing all of the asphalt and replacing it with new asphalt, resurfacing is a lot less involved. If you need your asphalt parking lot resurfaced, what that means is that new asphalt is being added on top of the old asphalt. When you resurface asphalt parking lots, you need to make sure the old asphalt is nice and smooth, so cracks and holes will need to be sealed. Next, the asphalt will be added. Many people ask, “How thick should asphalt parking lot be?” new asphalt should be 1 1/2 inches to 3 inches. After the new asphalt is added, a rolling machine will flatten the surface of the asphalt to make sure it is smooth. If you are interested in parking lot maintenance for your asphalt parking lot in Waco and Temple, TX, call eSquared Asphalt Maintenance. People tend to ask, “What is parking lot maintenance?” it is a service used to prevent damages happening to your parking lot. If you would like to make an appointment, call us at 254-716-8685!

Parking Lot Coatings: Extending the Life of Your Lot

A Parking Lot Coating Protects Against Water Damages and Vehicle Friction to Extend its Life.

What’s better than a brand new parking lot with a fresh coat of paint? Not much. This beautiful lot however, will face years of vehicle trauma and elemental corrosion. Not many parking lots endure that stress without cracking and allowing water leaks. Thankfully, you can extend the life of your parking lot and slow the degradation process. How so? Do it with special parking lot coatings.

The Specific Benefits of Parking Lot Coatings

Benefit #1. It seals your lot from water leaks. One of the greatest sources of damage to your parking lot is the expansion of water inside your concrete. Coatings are especially valuable for protecting your lot during the winter, when water regularly expands and causes cracking. As a bonus, this sealant prevents much of the trash and debris that stumbles into your lot from sticking to the pavement. Who wouldn’t like spending less time cleaning up the parking lot?

Benefit #2. Coatings reduce the stress caused by vehicle friction. Consider the thousands of vehicles that come across your parking lot each year. This trauma causes your lot to fade quickly, but coating slows the fading and deterioration process.

Benefit #3. Many owners forget about one of the most constant sources of parking lot corrosion: the sun. Solar radiation weakens the integrity of the pavement and causes it to crack. With a special coating, a much higher percentage of this radiation is deflected off the pavement. Less absorbed radiation equals less damage over time and a longer lasting parking lot for you.

If you’d like to learn more about parking lot coatings in Waco and Temple, TX, you’re welcome to talk to one of our specialists at eSquared Asphalt Maintenance. Give us a call at254-716-8685.