Joint and Crack Sealing

As part of pavement maintenance and preservation there are different processes that can help to maintain the road network in a relatively high state of condition. One of these processes is the use of crack sealing and filling. The sealing process is a localized treatment that is used to prevent water and debris from entering cracks in asphalt and concrete pavements. The crack sealants can be asphalt emulsions, asphalt cement and different types of rubberized asphalt. Crack sealing/filling can be a very effective pavement maintenance tool.

Hot pour crack sealants are designed to meet the environmental conditions. The product has to have good adhesive properties as well as cohesive properties. The sealant has to be flexible as well as elastic to stand the stresses and strains associated with the anticipated temperature swings.

Asphalt Emulsion:

The cold pour sealants can be cationic or anionic type emulsions containing modifiers such as fillers or polymers or can be stock asphalt emulsions. They are typically used in filling very narrow cracks.

Hot Pour:

The hot pour crack sealants can be straight run asphalt cement, asphalt cement with modifiers such as fibres, rubber crumb, polymers, fillers or combinations of the modifiers and fillers. The various types of hot pour sealants are used depending on the environmental conditions and crack width.

In order to perform crack sealing or filling the following guidelines should be followed:

  • Determine the proper crack sealing technique.
  • Determine which product should be used based on environmental conditions.
  • If crack sealing ensure crack is clean and free of all debris and rout is adequate.
  • If crack filling ensure crack is clean and free of debris
  • If hot pour product is used ensure follow manufacturers recommendations.
  • Follow proper construction techniques.
  • Use traffic control to protect workers.
  • Work only in weather suitable for sealing.