Imagine making your way to your car on a cold December morning and barely managing not to splash yourself with hot coffee as you trip over a crack in your asphalt driveway. That begets the question: to pave or not to pave?
Temperatures are of critical importance for asphalt paving. Should one brave the cold Medford, NJ winter or wait for the spring to call in the local trusted paving contractor? Garden State Paving & Seal Coating, LLC. will help you decide on the matter by refreshing you on what is required for an asphalt driveway.
The Ideal Condition Driveway
Hot Mix Asphalt
There are many types of asphalt, but one distinct form is HMA or hot mix asphalt. All conventional asphalt paving projects utilize HMA because of its workability & setting in warmer ambient temperatures. Low temperatures tend to affect the curing of hot mix asphalt and can render it hard and brittle.
HMA requires ambient temperatures exceeding 50F, while it needs to be around 220-290F during mixing, and then 185F for installation & compaction. In the summers, the temperature is ideal, and asphalt plants are working in full swing to provide material for massive paving projects.
If the rainy season is on, asphalt paving will take a break until the rain is gone and the sun is out for at least a few days for the pavement to be installed.
The Winter Fixer-Upper Driveway
Cold Mix Asphalt
Since you are curious to know if one can pave a driveway in winter, on slightly warmer & dry days, you might. But in Medford, not only do you have winters, but rain too! In all honesty, HMA is out of the question. The most you can do is use cold mix asphalt, and since it can’t be paved conventionally to act like an HMA pavement, it’s only suitable for patching potholes.
Monitor Air Humidity
If the winter is dry, the temperatures drop. If it’s humid, then snow or rain is due. If any snow or water is present with ambient winter temperatures, you can’t pave, knowing that the environmental conditions will immediately ruin the asphalt for compaction. If you need a driveway, you can budget for it now to have it done in summer.
Consider Tar & Chip
If you want a driveway badly and can’t wait, but your paving contractor is apprehensive about giving the all-clear to their team. Then comes tar & chip. By no means is this a solution, but if by some miracle the sun is out in Medford and the ambient temperature is at least 50F in the sun, be quick about it. The tar emulsion manages to cure at lower temperatures, holding the chips in place.
Get your free quote for our services. And please, wait for the sun to warm up the cockles of your asphalt before you pave it!