Asphalt – Fact or Fiction?

Asphalt - Fact or Fiction? asphalt paving texasOver the years, there have been several untrue beliefs about asphalt that have been widely circulated among the public. Some began decades ago as campaigns encouraged by competing industries, and other myths have continued to be perpetuated even though they are no longer relevant.

Myth: Asphalt plants pollute the air.
Reality: In the early days of asphalt production, it is true that most plants produced obnoxious pollutants. However, over the past few decades, asphalt manufacturers developed new technology to reduce pollutants and adopted standards that went beyond what was legally required. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency monitors the risks posed to air, water and soil quality by a number of manufacturing industries, including asphalt production and processing plants. The EPA does not list asphalt plants on any list of worrisome pollutants.

Myth: Asphalt production requires great quantities of valuable crude oil.
Reality: Most “new” asphalt is actually recycled from “old” asphalt. The process requires only a small amount of petroleum products, typically between five and six percent of the total.

Myth: Asphalt has a very short life.
Reality: With proper maintenance, an asphalt surface can last 20 years or more, depending on the climate and traffic. There are many instances of asphalt roadways with even longer lives, such as the New Jersey Turnpike, which has never had a pavement failure since its construction in 1951.

Myth: Asphalt releases a variety of toxic chemicals when it decays.
Reality: /Asphalt is so non-toxic that it is frequently used to line the holding pens at fish hatcheries and as a barrier at hazardous landfills. Asphalt does not dissolve in water, nor does it leach any harmful chemicals into the soil.

Myth: Asphalt is less expensive to replace than to repair.
Reality: Proper maintenance is far more economical than resurfacing. Sealing cracks, repairing potholes and protecting the surface with sealcoating can dramatically extend the lifespan and provide significant savings.

Alpha Paving is a full-service asphalt contractor serving customers in Austin and Central Texas.

We have heard these myths more than once during our time in the industry. Whether you are building a new parking lot, need to make your existing area ADA compliant or are interested in how to extend the life of your surface through professional repairs and maintenance, we can help. Simply ask for a free quote or call us at 512-677-9001.

Alpha Paving Industries…the elite paving company in Austin, Texas!

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