Potholes are among the greatest pavement defect concerns for commercial and industrial property owners. To better understand how to protect your sidewalk from potholes, it is helpful to learn what causes them to form and which strategies work best for prevention and repair. Keep on reading to do just that!
It’s no secret that the speed of pothole formation tends to gain in the winter. Following the freezing temperatures and snow seem, more potholes do also. This is because of seasonal freeze-thaw cycles, which cause pavement to contract and expand with the changing conditions. These conditions can cause surface defects to form very fast, which is why it seems like so many pot holes and sidewalk depressions suddenly look around this time of year.
Where and Why They Appear
The two factors that lead to surface blemishes that the most are chilly temperatures and water. When these two factors are present, it is highly possible that pavement defects will occur. Both asphalt and concrete surfaces are vulnerable to these effects, such as sidewalks, parking lots, roads, streets, pool decks, and much more.
It starts with water seeping into existing cracks and depressions in pavement that have been brought on by a combination of inclement, weather, traffic, and natural wear and tear. Water subsequently reacts with the cold temperatures by freezing and then expanding. Then, when temperatures become milder, the water thaws, causing the existing cracks to contract and ultimately worsen. This is because of water draining and evaporating into the surface, causing a gap to form between the ground and the pavement. The more this cycle happens, the larger the surface blemishes get, and form what we frustratingly know as potholes.
Methods of Prevention
The best method of prevention when it comes to asphalt and concrete pavements is to repair surface blemishes while they’re still in their early phases.
Another frequent preventive method is routine maintenance, which may include periodic resurfacing, overlays, reinforcement, cleaning, and incorporating an efficient water drainage system. If you’re having new pavement installed, it is crucial to hire a professional paving company that has a reputation for supplying trusted work and outstanding results. Many pavement problems begin with poor installation, so make sure that you hire wisely to avoid making a poor investment.