Are you constructing a new parking lot in Charlotte, NC? You should learn some asphalt paving basics to manage your project better.
Of course, you can always rely on the professional services of SMI Paving for high-quality asphalt paving. Click here to get a quote on parking lot paving.
But we believe that clients should have a general understanding of how things work so they can get the best value on their investment. In today’s blog, we list down the six basics of the asphalt paving process that you should know before starting with your parking lot.
1. Remove Existing Asphalt
Your paving contractor will begin by removing and hauling away the existing surface. The benefit of asphalt is that the old material can be recycled, making asphalt paving an eco-friendly option for businesses. Removing the existing surface requires specialist machinery, such as bobcats, dump trucks, and forklifts.
2. Grade the Slope
The next step is called grading and sloping. All asphalt pavements require proper drainage so that water doesn’t pool on the surface. That is why slopes are graded on the parking lot to ensure the proper flow of water to the gutters or grassy areas. If water doesn’t flow properly, it will accumulate on your parking lot, causing potholes and further deterioration.
3. Preparing the Aggregate
Asphalt is an aggregate material created with sand, gravel, stone, and hot asphalt. It is then bound with bitumen and other binders. Hot asphalt is warmed up to 3500F and is spread when hot. The aggregate cools rapidly, and the surface is safe to touch or walk on within 24 hours.
4. Laying the Aggregate
Once the asphalt is prepared, the aggregate is spread to create the surface of the parking lot. The aggregate is loaded into the receiving hopper, and the haul truck is aligned in front of the paving area. Correct positioning is critical; otherwise, the process will be delayed.
5. Look for Weak Spots
Once the paving is laid and smoothened, the workers will ensure uniformity of the asphalt texture. If there are weak areas, they will dig several inches deeper and apply more aggregate. Moreover, any asphalt that is stuck on the machinery must be loosened and mixed back into the paving while the material is still hot.
6. Ensure Proper Compaction
The last stage of the paving process is compaction. This is done with steel-tired tactic rollers or vibratory rollers, or a combination of both. Compaction ensures that the asphalt process remains sturdy season after season.
Once installed, your parking lot will be ready for use in about 24 hours. Asphalt pavements are fast to construct, and there is no ‘cure’ time involved. This is one of the many benefits of choosing asphalt for your paving projects.
Now that you have an overview of what the paving process looks like, you can go ahead with the construction of your parking lot in Charlotte, NC. And if you still have questions, click here to reach out to our experts at SMI Paving.