The University of Tennessee, Knoxville


Asphalt Paving Longevity

by Frank Brewer (Excerpted, in part with permission, from

Asphalt Paving is not cheap. The longer the life we get from any paving application, the less expensive it becomes so let us look at a few of the various means to extend pavement life.

Application of Hot Polymer Sealant

Asphalt resurfacing is a method that has a couple of alternatives. One is a direct overlay; another is a milling and resurfacing process.

Another countermeasure is Crack Sealing. As pavement weathers and settles surface cracks form. Cracks should be treated promptly because they create openings for moisture to penetrate the pavement layers. Moisture or water can cause severe damage when trapped in the crack. Neglecting pavement cracking usually leads to accelerated deterioration of the pavement, resulting in significant problems such as potholes or base failures, which cause the serviceability of the pavement to decline. By using a hot polymer sealant, you are able to fill the crack to prevent the water intrusion and the service life of the roadway is extended.

Milling Operation

Rejuvenation is also available. Rejuvenation is a surface treatment that replaces the lighter or volatile oils in the asphalt mix. These oils essentially evaporate over time. This process can be used on road surfaces that are in good condition but have been in place for a period of several years. It is less expensive than most processes; however, it will not correct surface deformities. A thorough sweeping prepares the roadway, the Surface Treatment is applied, and that is followed with a Curing treatment. The application of the volatile oils will add years of service life to the roadway.

Once the pavement is renewed there will be re-stripping and other activities involved. There are also additional methods to extend the service life to your roadways. Although there are expenses with these processes, the extended life of the roadway justifies the expenditures.

For more information on these and the additional methods, please contact TTAP (865-974-5255, 800-252-7623,


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