How Do You Preserve Asphalt?

Asphalt used in the construction of highways and pavements can be preserved through both routine and preventative maintenance. Which type of treatment is applied will vary, taking into account the condition of the surface, its functional requirements, and budget considerations.

Asphalt Preservation

In this article, we will explore the different types of treatments that fall under routine maintenance and preventative maintenance and how they are used to increase the longevity of asphalt for both pavements and roads.

Routine Maintenance Techniques

Routine maintenance is used to repair localised surface deformations such as cracks and potholes, usually as and when they occur. Generally, the overall surface of the road is in good condition and treatments are used to prevent deformations from getting worse and needing more extensive repairs such as total resurfacing, which can be costly and time-consuming.

Crack Sealing

When cracks form in a road or pavement surface, water gets in which can weaken it and lead to potholes. As potholes can be the cause of expensive damage to vehicles and make roads unsafe, it is important to fix cracks before they get any worse. The process of crack sealing involves filling cracks in with sealant. This not only seals up the crack but prevents any further ingress of water which might eventually lead to the formation of potholes.


Patching is most commonly used to fill in potholes and prevent further damage while improving safety for road users. Examples of patching treatments that can be used in this capacity include AirPatch, a high-performance engineered application that uses a spray tanker to apply aggregate into the pothole, and EasyPatch which is a cost-effective manual process for pothole repair.

Preventative Maintenance Techniques

Preventative maintenance techniques are used to preserve the entire asphalt surface as opposed to sections that are already damaged. These treatments can be used to seal the surface and enhance properties such as skid resistance. The main aim of preventative maintenance is to increase the lifespan of the asphalt by slowing down the rate of deterioration. This is one of the most cost-effective forms of asphalt preservation and maintenance, as opposed to fixing deformations when they occur.

Surface Dressing

Surface dressing is used to restore a road surface and seal it. It can be used to improve the skid resistance of a surface, waterproof it and protect against frost and water damage. Surface dressings involve spraying the road with a bitumen binder, followed by a layer of chippings that are then pressed into the surface using a rolling machine.

At BituChem, our high performance sealed surface dressing, LockChip can be used along conventional surface dressing to fully seal the highway. The application of a LockChip binder is proven to significantly improve the early-life retention of chips in all areas of the dressing, as well as providing waterproofing, increased durability against cracks and potholes.

Micro Asphalt

Micro asphalt, also known as micro-surfacing, is laid over the top of an existing asphalt surface to seal and protect it. Made up of a mixture of aggregates and bitumen emulsions, micro asphalt can be quickly applied to any road surface to provide enhanced waterproofing and durability.

At BituChem, we manufacture and supply various grades of micro asphalt which can be used in the course of preventative maintenance to preserve asphalt.

Learn More About Highway Preservation With BituChem

Our mission is to offer quality bespoke solutions for the global highway construction and road surfacing industry. We have developed several innovative highway preservation and road surfacing products that can be used to preserve asphalt footpaths and roads for many years to come affordably and efficiently. To find out more about our products and services, please contact us. Our team would be delighted to provide you with all the information you need for your requirements and provide you with the right products for your project.