A Few Things You Never Knew About Blacktop

Have you ever noticed how horrible freshly laid blacktop smells? You may have driven down a highway under construction and noticed the putrid smell. Blacktop, or asphalt, is made of several materials, one being a by-product of the oil refinery industry. In fact, since the black, tar-like substance is an oil-refinery by-product, it is a high-quality yet affordable material that can withstand enormous amounts of weight and wear-and-tear.

If you have a newly laid driveway made of blacktop in Columbus, chances are that your garage may smell horrible for a short period of time. Be sure to keep your garage door closed until after your contractor has given you the all-clear for using your driveway. But, if the odor is strong in your garage, keep all the doors and windows open and use several large fans to swoosh the bad air out and bring the good air in. Be sure to wait long enough for the blacktop material to cure before you drive or park your vehicles on it. Not only may your tires make marks in the surface, but that putrid smell may get into your vehicle.

When you understand where the materials for blacktop in Columbus comes from, you’ll have a better understanding of why it can get sticky or crumble years later. Solvents, oils, gasolines and other products and by-products of the oil refinery industry can make the blacktop go through degradation. When these substances spill on the blacktop, they change the molecular structure of the blacktop, which basically either melts the blacktop or makes it crumble. That’s when stickiness can happen. To avoid this degradation, make sure to rinse all oil products and by-products from your driveway as soon as possible.

Cracks in your blacktop could mean several things, but it’s usually all related to water damage of some sort. Water underneath the driveway can cause cracks to appear. This is fairly typical in driveways that did not have the subfoundation prepared properly. These cracks can worsen when water gets into the cracks and reaches the ground underneath. You’ll want to repair cracks as soon as possible. You’ll also need to figure out why the cracks formed in the first place. It’s a good idea to contact a blacktop contractor to inspect your driveway if you experience any of these types of problems.

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