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Parking Lot Maintenance: Asphalt Skin Patch

When you hear the word “patch”, what thoughts are triggered? For some, it may be a remedy to help quit smoking. For others, it’s an essential part of any good pirate costume. And if you’re into mountain biking, you’d better have a few with you before starting off on that 50-mile trek. But in our business, a patch is a valuable short-term, economical asphalt repair solution for small surface areas.

Parking Lot Maintenance: Asphalt Skin Patch

Skin patching is performed by placing new asphalt material directly over an affected individualized surface area, then compacting it using a vibratory roller or vibra-tamping compactor. It’s effective on surfaces paved with asphalt, slurry seal, and micro surfacing. Surface conditions that would signal the need for asphalt skin patching include the following:

  1. Individual areas showing signs of concentrated deterioration such as raveling or tight alligator cracking
  2. Areas that present possible trip hazards (e.g. potholes)
  3. Low depressions where water tends to pond
  4. Areas with significant staining from oil or other vehicle fluids

As mentioned earlier, skin patching is a short-term fix. Therefore, it may not be a viable option for some surface conditions. For example, parking lots and roadways are typically designed to create “flow lines” for water to travel to curbs, dry wells, retention areas, etc. Sometimes these flow lines are in the middle of the paved area. Due to the destructive nature of standing water on asphalt (see our post on Easy, No-Cost Preventive Parking Lot Maintenance Tools), these areas may be susceptible to faster deterioration.

Skin patching in a flow line may raise the surface area in that section, despite the best attempt to match existing elevation on all sides of the new patch. This can create a “dam” effect which will either force water to find a way around the patch, be displaced to a nearby depression, or produce a low spot for ponding at that point. You’re better off performing asphalt removal and replacement (R&R), which we will discuss in greater detail in a future post.

There are many repair options when it comes to addressing the current condition of your asphalt – depending on customer expectations and budgetary requirements. Let one of our professional estimators help you determine whether asphalt skin patching is a right solution for you.

Contact Ace for a free assessment today.

ACE Asphalt is a full service asphalt maintenance, repair, and paving company with offices in Phoenix, Tucson, and Flagstaff, Arizona, Las Vegas, Nevada, Albuquerque, New Mexico, and Dallas,Texas. Ace serves the parking lot repair, maintenance, and paving needs of property managers, building owners, and contractors.

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