Asphalt is a durable substance designed to withstand vehicular and foot traffic, corrosion, and extreme weather. When it comes to applying asphalt paving, excessive temperature fluctuations and the weather can greatly affect the state of the material, which is why asphalt temperature monitoring is important.

For example, asphalt is mixed at an average temperature of 137 degrees Celsius before being applied to the surface. Extremely cold temperatures harden the asphalt, preventing the material from properly staying in place. 

Why the Right Temperature Is Important during Asphalt Paving

To understand why the temperature during asphalt paving is important, it is vital to know how weak spots, rough surfaces, and inconsistency can affect the end result. 

Mixture Temperature

To process asphalt at the manufacturing plant, it requires a temperature of 140 to 177 degrees Celsius for a solid mixture before it can be prepared for delivery to the site. A sudden drop below 85 degrees reduces its consistency. The asphalt is contained at high temperatures even during the delivery as well as being constantly rotated. 

Ambient Temperature

The surrounding contained and air temperature of the asphalt before and during the application is another vital aspect in producing a smooth and durable product. The air temperature needs to be at least 10 degrees Celsius during application and on the rise the immediately days following for the curing process. Ideally, the ambient temperature should range from 10 to 29 degrees Celsius. 

Ground Temperature

The third most important temperature to be monitored is the ground temperature. Asphalt application should be scheduled when the ground temperature is measured at least 10 degrees Celsius for the week before and forecasted for the week afterwards. Infrared thermometers are used to ensure the ground surface is not too cold to prevent water pockets from forming over time. 

Wind Speed

Depending on the location of the site, the wind speed can hamper efforts to lay asphalt properly. The wind, whether cool or warm, can cause the hot asphalt to quickly cool, destroying the compression properties. 

In addition, high wind speed during and after application can slow the curing and drying process. The wind velocity can actually change the structure of the material’s molecules, causing the asphalt to break down. 

The Role of Temperature Monitoring in Asphalt Paving

Whether it’s during asphalt repair maintenance or for newly installed pavement, precise temperature monitoring is necessary to protect and preserve the integrity of the asphalt. 

The asphalt mixture cannot properly solidify if the temperature is too cold. In order to produce a good outcome, it is vital that the blend has a sufficient density and holds a small amount of water to ensure the consistency remains intact for a smooth surface. Construction members must monitor the quality of the asphalt as well as for the safety of everyone onsite. 

Benefits of Temperature Monitoring in Asphalt Paving

  • Improved asphalt quality
  • Enhanced safety for workers and equipment
  • Increased efficiency and cost savings
  • Reduced risk of premature pavement failure
  • Improved bonding of layers
  • Consistent pavement quality
  • Reduced waste
  • Improved environmental sustainability

What Is the Ideal Temperature to Lay Asphalt?

In a perfect world with precise temperatures, the ideal temperature would be around 20 degrees Celsius. For most situations, depending on the location, the ultimate time for asphalt paving is late Spring or early Fall. 

These times of the year can see the air and ground temperatures varying between 10 and 32 degrees Celsius, prime temperatures for asphalt application. It is also important to ensure these select temperatures are sustained for two to three days before and after the application. 

What Happens When the Asphalt Temperature Isn’t Correct?

Whether the project is new or requires asphalt repair and maintenance, the temperature needs to be correct. If the asphalt mixture temperature drops, the density will be reduced, causing the composition of the asphalt to lose stability. From this, the smooth surface will deteriorate to allow moisture to become trapped within the asphalt. 

On the other hand, rare extreme air heat of 48 degrees Celsius prevents the asphalt from being able to compress. This too destroys the strength and resilience of the asphalt. 

Asphalt is not meant to last forever, and it breaks down over time from the weight of traffic, wear and tear, and as a result of damaging weather. Without the proper temperature upon application, these situations can happen sooner than expected. 

Looking for High-Quality Asphalt Paving Services in Toronto? Get in Touch with Us Today!

Sure-Seal Pavement Maintenance Inc. proudly offers top-quality service and products to commercial and industrial properties across the GTA. As leading professionals in asphalt paving services, we monitor the air and ground temperatures in relation to the humidity levels, local rainfall, and extreme weather conditions. With our 30 years of experience, we have the knowledge of local climate conditions to ensure your product withstands the test of time. 

Call us at 1-888-PAVEMENT or register here for a free no-obligation quote!