By definition, a pothole is a depression in a road surface, usually asphalt pavement, where traffic has removed broken pieces of the pavement. It is usually the result of water in the underlying soil structure and traffic passing over the affected area. From the surface, this usually looks like a hole in the roadway and can vary in size and shape. This damage is usually caused by the natural expansion and contraction of asphalt then accelerated by the intrusion of rain or other water sources which accelerates the deterioration.

Once you see a pothole forming, no matter what size it is, it’s crucial to repair it as soon as possible. Left unchecked, this type of damage will continuously grow based on weather, traffic, and outside factors. The larger the pothole, the more dangerous it will become for customers, employees, and vehicles. You can prevent potholes from forming with proper maintenance early on, before the damage forms.

There are three types of repair methods you can choose from to fix your potholes depending on the damage.

Pothole Patching: This type of repair is short-term and consists of asphalt being poured into the holes and compacted with a hand tamper, car tire, or something that provides an even, level surface. These repairs are cheap and quick, but can only be expected to last about one year. You should use this method as a temporary fix with the idea that a bigger repair will be needed in the near term.

Milling: This method can be used if your parking lot has surficial damage. If asphalt is present at the bottom of the hole, two inches can be milled off the surface surrounding the pothole and this area is replaced with compacted asphalt. This method creates a smooth pavement that will hold longer than a pothole patch.

Dig-out: This last option is the most expensive, but is the longest lasting. This consists of removing all the asphalt around the hole, then, an aggregate base is re-graded, and the area is patched with four inches of asphalt. A roller will then compact the asphalt. This solution is the best for a long-term fix because it’s structurally stable.

The Terra Tip: To prevent potholes from forming, seal cracks in your pavement right away!

Terra Contracting’s primary expertise is in asphalt installation, repair and maintenance. Our team is experienced in providing asphalt to new construction projects, as well as performing maintenance on existing commercial and residential properties. Our focus is on providing a quality product delivered with optimal efficiency. The streamlined process we employ involves our trucks bringing the asphalt to the site, placing the asphalt into the paver, laying down the mat and quickly rolling it. This process allows the pavement to reach full compaction with a smooth finish before the product hardens.