Understanding the Top Causes of Asphalt Deterioration

Understanding the Top Causes of Asphalt Deterioration


Asphalt is a common choice for paving driveways, parking lots, and streets. However, like other materials, asphalt can deteriorate over time. This can be a challenge for property owners as it can require costly repairs or complete replacement, leading to unexpected expenses. By understanding what causes asphalt deterioration, it is possible to prolong the life of your pavement. In this post, we will explore the top causes of asphalt deterioration. Here at Reliable Pavement Maintenance, we are proud to provide sealcoating services in Lake County, FL, to help our customers take care of their pavement. 


1. Water Damage

Water is one of the primary culprits of asphalt deterioration. When water penetrates the surface of the pavement, it can cause the underlying layers to soften and erode. Signs of water damage include cracks, potholes, and uneven surfaces. One way to prevent water damage is to ensure that the drainage system is functioning correctly, allowing water to flow off the pavement. Additionally, sealcoating your asphalt can help to protect the surface from water penetration.

2. Sun Exposure

Excessive exposure to the sun can cause asphalt to fade, become brittle and crack. The constant expansion and contraction as the temperature rises and falls also puts stress on the pavement, leading to deterioration. One way to protect your pavement from sun exposure is by applying a high-quality sealant that contains UV inhibitors. This can help reduce the risk of damage from the sun's rays.

3. Heavy Traffic

Asphalt is designed to withstand a certain amount of traffic. However, if the pavement is exposed to heavy loads beyond its capacity, it can cause cracking and other forms of damage. Heavy trucks and delivery vehicles are especially hard on asphalt and can cause premature deterioration. To prevent excessive wear and tear on your pavement, consider posting weight limits or providing alternate routes for heavy traffic.

4. Chemical Spills

Asphalt is vulnerable to damage caused by spilled chemicals. Gasoline, oil, and other automotive fluids can dissolve the surface of the pavement, leading to erosion and potholes. Severe chemical spills require professional repair to prevent ongoing damage. To prevent chemical damage, it is essential to clean up spills immediately and avoid using harsh chemicals near your pavement.

5. Poor Installation

Improper installation of asphalt is a significant cause of pavement deterioration. If the base layer is not adequately compacted, it can cause settling, leading to cracks and uneven surfaces. Using low-quality materials or failing to account for drainage can also lead to deterioration. To prevent deterioration due to poor installation, choose a reputable contractor with experience in asphalt installation. 



Asphalt deterioration is a common problem that can be costly to repair. By understanding the top causes of pavement deterioration, it is possible to take steps to prolong the life of your asphalt. To protect your pavement, consider a regular maintenance routine that includes sealcoating and addressing any issues quickly. Here at Reliable Pavement Maintenance, we are committed to providing high-quality sealcoating services in Lake County, FL, to help our customers protect their pavement. Contact us today for a free estimate and to learn more about how we can help you take care of your pavement.

To Top