Jul 17, 2019
Why is drainage important for asphalt pavements?

British Columbia is one of the most beautiful places on the planet to call home. From the world-class urban environment of Vancouver to the breathtaking coastline and awe-inspiring mountains, there is something for everyone in this part of the world. And while the Vancouver area does have it all, it also has its own unique set of variables that make living here a bit different than anywhere else. As a homeowner in particular, there are certain variables to consider that may not be on your radar if you lived elsewhere. The biggest, and perhaps most obvious, is rainfall. Vancouver sees a lot of rain annually, and this can add some challenges to how you manage your home. At Burnaby Blacktop, this means protecting all of your asphalt paving from water damage by incorporating the proper drainage system. Why is drainage so important for asphalt pavements? Continue reading to find out.

At the most basic level, asphalt paving can be damaged by water collecting on its surface. During heavy rain spells, it is not uncommon to have puddles slowly build on your asphalt paving – especially if you do not have an adequate drainage system in place. As puddles grow, the standing water will deteriorate the asphalt by weakening the connections and bonds between asphalt binder and the rock and sand mixture that provides your pavement’s foundation. As these connections are weakened and the asphalt starts to deteriorate, you will eventually be left with potholes.

While surface water presents its own set of problems, water below your asphalt can also create major issues. A subpar drainage system will enable water to build-up and weaken materials from the inside-out. The major cause of this in our part of the world are melt-freeze cycles that occur when water gets into the pavement as liquid and then expands as it freezes and turns to solid. This process widens cracks and can turn a small inconvenience into a much larger problem. Further, water can freeze in a sort of lens below the pavement and, in turn, cause the pavement to shift upwards and create potholes from the bottom up.

In short, water buildup on your asphalt can and will cause a lot of damage which is why drainage is so important. If you are installing asphalt pavement for the first time, be sure that your contractor is incorporating adequate slope to prevent water from pooling on the surface. If you already have asphalt pavement at your home, pay special attention to its condition and hire a professional to handle any crack sealing, patching or seal coating needs you may have in order to prevent water from seeping below the surface and causing damage from the inside. Our team at Burnaby Blacktop knows everything there is to know about asphalt paving and has seen it all over the years. Whether you are installing pavement for the first time or your existing asphalt needs a touch-up, Burnaby Blacktop is here for you. Give us a call with any questions, to get a quote, or to schedule an appointment today!

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