Pothole repair: nobody wants to think about it, but if you’re the manager or owner of a commercial property with an accompanying parking lot, it’s got to be something you think about. A parking lot dotted with them can turn potential customers away if they have to dodge a minefield of potholes just to park. These unsightly and potentially dangerous craters in your lot surface are a major hassle, but not repairing them promptly could be even worse for you and your business.
How Potholes Form
Potholes are an assumed risk when you have any sort of paved surface that sees a lot of traffic. Highways, country roads, driveways, parking lots — if it’s asphalt, it’s susceptible. But how do potholes actually form? Believe it or not, there’s more than just natural wear and tear at play here. Yes, high levels of vehicle traffic can and do contribute to asphalt wearing down over time, but the formation of potholes is supercharged whenever two things meet together: water and cold temperatures.
Water from rain and other sources often seeps into old, cracked roadways, where it then gets absorbed in the ground underneath. Then, when the weather turns cold enough to freeze that groundwater, this frozen water expands and places additional stress on the road surface. Once that groundwater thaws, it reveals cracks and fissures that are now larger than before. In other words, cold weather in the fall and winter, especially in wet climates, slowly turns roads into the vehicular equivalent of Swiss cheese.
Methods of Pothole Repair
Pothole repair is a necessity, considering how unsightly they are. Additionally, the damage that potholes can do to vehicle tires and suspensions can easily run into the hundreds or even thousands of dollars. If you’re responsible for the maintenance of a commercial parking lot, neglecting to fix potholes could even expose you to legal liabilities in the event of vehicle damage, so it’s important to ensure any potholes are repaired as quickly as possible.
Filling potholes does require some work. First, the hole itself should be cleaned up and squared off as much as possible to ensure the asphalt patch of your choice will fill the void as well as possible. Then, you will need to pour your patch material into the newly cleaned hole and create a mound of new material an inch or two higher than your road surface. Finally, you will need to compress that material into the hole with a tamper or similar tool. The more compact you make it, the longer the repair will last.
How to Prevent Potholes in the First Place
While anyone can pull off a do-it-yourself pothole repair in an emergency, it’s better to not have to do so in the first place. The best and most efficient method for doing so is to ensure that you have preventative maintenance done on your parking lot early and often, as this will halt or slow down any asphalt deterioration that your lot is already experiencing.
The most reliable way to accomplish this is to enlist the aid of a professional paving company with experience in road and parking lot repair. Not only will this prevent you from having to struggle with DIY pothole repair problems personally, it’s more cost-effective to repair a parking lot that’s in relatively good condition than it is to repair one that needs some major work done.
If you want to avoid having your parking lot look like the cratered surface of an alien planet, it’s best that you turn to the experts today.