If you live anywhere near Nashville, you are familiar with potholes. But these inconvenient dips and divots in asphalt happen to more than just the roadways. Homeowners with asphalt driveways are at-risk, too, but often do not know what can be done to fix these imperfections. According to Hargrove Sealcoating, asphalt patching is the answer.

Why potholes form

Before you understand the repair methods, it’s important to know what causes cracks and potholes in a driveway in the first place. In Nashville, Franklin, Murfreesboro, and the surrounding areas, this is often winter weather. Although we see relatively few solid freezes, when precipitation happens, it seeps into the cracks of the asphalt. Since ice expands and contracts when it freezes and melts respectively, the cracks get larger with each cold snap. This causes the asphalt to lose its integrity and break up under the weight of passing vehicles. Eventually, large chunks of asphalt wash away, exposing the gravel underlayment.

Techniques

There are many different asphalt patching techniques. First is called a throw-and-roll. Although considered a temporary fix, this method is often used when an emergency repair is necessary. On larger areas, a combination of gravel and liquid asphalt material is injected into the damaged surface. Because this is done with a high-pressure tool, no compaction is needed. For very small non-commercial repairs, such as a single hole in a residential driveway, a cold asphalt patch is usually preferred. Cold patching is faster and less labor-intensive, meaning it is typically more affordable. Hargrove Sealcoating also offers infrared asphalt restoration and surface patching.

DIY vs. professional repair

Most homeowners can typically handle very small repairs on their own using an asphalt patching system, which can be found at a hardware store. If the directions are followed carefully and there is no underlying damage, a DIY repair of a pothole of up to about 3 inches in diameter can be a long-lasting and affordable option. However, anyone who is never handled asphalt before or that has extensive cracking or multiple potholes in the driveway should contact a professional. Large areas may require excavation and underlying repairs that an inexperienced eye might miss.

Another concern with DIY asphalt patching is surface preparation. Most experts agree that you can achieve a longer-lasting repair by squaring the area. This makes it possible to create a more even surface. Surface preparation also requires a thorough cleaning, which includes removing the damaged asphalt and, possibly, parts of the foundation. As a professional asphalt patching company in Nashville, Hargrove Sealcoating has all of the tools and materials necessary to complete jobs of any size.

For more information about asphalt repairs and service in Franklin, Nashville, or Murfreesboro, call Hargrove Sealcoating at (931) 619-6718.

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