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What is Hot Mix Asphalt?
Hot mix asphalt is an engineered mixture of course sand, crushed limestone and liquid asphalt cement (AC), a petroluem product. The sand and limestome materials are mixed and heated in a dryer to eliminate any moisture content, then sent by a conveyor to the pug mill where hot (300 degree) liquid asphalt cement is added to the mixture making the finished product in several grades according to the size and quantity of materials required by the design specifications.

There are several different grades of asphalt produced. The most commonly used are:

HL8 -
A base grade asphalt with a 3/4 clear limestone component that will have a course, exposed, stony appearance. Used only as a base course asphalt. Usually overlaid by HL3 or HL3A.

HL3 - A surface grade asphalt with a 3/8 inch clear limestone that will have a smooth, more even appearance suitable for roadways, parking lots, and driveways with heavy traffic.

HL3A - A surface grade asphalt with 1/4 inch clear limestone component that will have a fine smooth appearance suitable for driveways and pathways.

Home Driveways areas
We recommend six (6) inches as a minimum thickness for the stone base material under the asphalt and a two (2) inch compacted thickness of HL3A or HL3 asphalt hard surfacing.

If your driveway asphalt surface is severely cracked or is uneven with tire ruts, your driveway has a condition commonly known as base failuer. This is an indication of insufficient thickness of stone base under the asphalt to carry the loading of the vehicles. To correct this problem complete excavation of all existing materials to a minimum depth of eight (8) inches will be required then the reconstructing the driveway to at least the minimum specification given above.

If your driveway asphalt surface is older and very grey looking but with few cracks and no rutting, we recommend removal of the old asphalt only, re-grading the existing stone base, a dressing of new stone placed for levelling purposes, and the installation of a two (2) inch compacted thickness of HL3A or HL3 asphalt hard surfacing.

Do I need curbs?
Curbs provide confinement along the edges of the asphalt preventing cracking and breaking to start due to traffic loading and stop the encroachment of any vegetation. We recommend curbs, they can be cast in place concrete curb, precast concrete curb, or treated wood timber curb.

Asphalt Sealing
New asphalt has to oxidize (dry out) and completely cure to eliminate the active petroluem components on the surface before a sealer can be applied. This may take up to three (3) months or longer depending on the amount of sunshine, heat, and rain fall that occurs.
We recommend sealing only after at least one(1) year of service and then it may become a yearly requirement to keep a good appearance depending upon the quality of sealer used.
A coal tar base sealer should be used, hand appllied using a roller or squeegee.

Stones are dislodging from the asphalt surface
As the asphalt oxidizes and the surface wears the asphalt will naturally begin to turn grey. The greying indicates that the asphalt cement that holds the mixture together on the surface has completely cured and lost some of its cohesive properties that bind the stone to the mixture. It is natural for the asphalt to release some of its surface stone and this pitting is both normal and expected.

The specification requirements for commercial & industrial applications will vary due to the usage and loading placed on the asphalt surface. We recommend that each project be reviewed individually and engineered to suit the application.

Medium duty parking areas & roadways*
• Excavation & grading (if required)
• Stone base - 9 inches
• Asphalt - 3 inch compacted thickness (1 1/2" HL8 & 1 1/2" HL3)

*Generally the above minimum specifications could be used for most applications.

Heavy duty yard areas & roadways
• Excavation & grading (if required)
• Stone base - 12 inches
• Asphalt - 4 inch compacted thickness (2 1/2" HL8 & 1 1/2" HL3)

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