Author Archives: epicpaving

cement-vs-concrete

What are 12 Types of Cement?

Concrete construction involves many different types of cement. What about cement vs concrete? What are the key properties, advantages, and challenges of each? The main types of cement include: hydrographic cement, expansive cement, air entraining cement, white cement, high alumina cement, blast furnace slag cement, sulfates resisting cement, low heat cement, quick setting cement, rapid hardening cement, Portland Pozzolana cement, and ordinary Portland cement. Let’s go over some of the key types.

Know the Difference

What is cement? Cement vs Concrete:

  • Cement is not the same as concrete
  • Many people mix the terms
  • Cement is a concrete ingredient
  • Concrete is a mix of paste and aggregates (often sand, gravel, or crushed stone)

Ordinary Portland Cement and Portland Pozzolana Cement

The most popular type of cement for concrete construction is Ordinary Portland Cement. Construction projects use ordinary Portland cement globally for a wide range of construction projects. Portland Pozzolana Cement has a higher resistance to chemicals. Construction companies use Portland Pozzolana Cement for sewage projects, marine structures, and any concrete exposed to water like bridges and dams.

Rapid Hardening Cement and Quick Setting Cement

Construction companies use rapid hardening cement for prefabricated concrete construction and road projects. The mixture hardens in three days, allowing for earlier removal of formwork. Quick setting cement also sets earlier but with lower strength.

White Cement and Colored Cement

Both of these types of cement are used primarily decoratively for architectural design. Contact our professionals about customizing your concrete construction. White cement can be used for swimming pools and garden ornaments.

High Alumina Cement

High Alumina Cement has high comprehensive strength. The cement is more workable and ideal for projects subject to frost, extreme temperatures, and acid.

Contact our experienced professionals today about your concrete construction needs. We are ready to help you.

blacktop-paving

What are the properties of Asphalt

When considering asphalt concrete mixtures, each mixture needs specific properties to meet recommended safety guidelines. Whether for blacktop paving or other construction projects, reach the required mix properties in stability, durability, flexibility, fatigue resistance, skid resistance, impermeability, and workability. Read the specifics below.

The Importance of Stability

Stable paving will remain smooth and not alter in shape regardless of loading and stress. This is essential for blacktop paving. A balance between internal friction and cohesion increases stability. This will help maintain shape under heavy traffic.

Maintaining Durability and Impermeability

Pavement withstands considerably stressed due to traffic, weather, and moisture. To maintain durability, use maximum binder content and a denser gradation of stripping resistant aggregate. This helps reduce the passage of moisture, water, and air through the pavement.

Workability and Flexibility Are Key

The more workable the mixture is, the easier it is to place and shape. Ensure stability to avoid issues with workability. If a mix is too easy to work, then the resultant mixture can be unstable. This “tender mix” might have too much moisture, not enough mineral filler, or too much sand. Flexibility determines if the pavement will resist cracking. All asphalt pavement needs flexibility to avoid cracking, potholes, and other damage. 

Fatigue Resistance

Constant heavy traffic leads to bending in the pavement. If the pavement has not been mixed properly or exhibits fatigue, cracking results. Aging and poor mixing contribute to poor fatigue resistance.

The Importance of Skid Resistance

For high traffic areas, skid resistance helps tired grip the surface and avoid slipping and skidding. Especially important in areas with high precipitation, skid resistance prevents accidents and injury. Avoid smooth surfaces. Rough surfaces have more skid resistance.

Follow all mix requirements to maintain these key desirable properties. If you have questions about paving, asphalt, and concrete, feel free to contact our experienced professionals today. We are ready to help you with your project.

paving-of-roads

How Long Does a Paved Road Last?

How long will your paved road or driveway last? Exceptional installation is the key factor in determined the longevity of a road. What are some best practices for asphalt or concrete paving of roads? What materials last longest?

Regular Maintenance

Whether using asphalt or concrete, consistent maintenance will make the biggest difference. Paving of the roads involves more than laying down asphalt or concrete. When the roads begin to crack or the winter damages structural integrity, contact a paving professional to seal and repair the road.

Winters are especially brutal to roads. Snow and ice melt into small cracks and holes. As the temperatures drop, the water freezes. This expansion causes the small cracks to grow larger, sometimes into large dangerous potholes. If possible, have a professional seal the road before the winter season strikes. Once winter is over, begin to repair any damage.

Concrete vs. Asphalt Paving

If you maintain the road concrete can last as long as three decades. Asphalt will last closer to fifteen to twenty years. In both cases, though, be sure that you seal and repair every year. You might find that over time the driveway will lose is aesthetic appeal. You might choose to replace the entire road if it is beyond repair.

Hydroblasting

Sometimes you can grind down the topmost layer of the concrete, leaving behind stronger concrete. However, another option is hydroblasting. Hydroblasting will lengthen the life of your concrete road. A silica fume concrete overlay will be placed over the road after the contractor identifies any weak areas. A road that has been hydroblasted may last for fifty years.

Follow a regular maintenance schedule to ensure the longest lifespan for your road. Call us today with any questions.

asphalt-driveway-sealing

Top 4 Pros and Cons of Asphalt in 2019

Asphalt remains a popular driveway and parking lot option for many homeowners and business owners. Properly installed asphalt can last for many years, especially with regular asphalt driveway sealing and maintenance. What are the biggest pros and cons of asphalt paving for 2019?

Relatively Low Maintenance

Asphalt paving is a clear aesthetically pleasing choice. To keep your asphalt driveway or parking lot looking pristine, clean it at least twice a year. Regularly maintain the driveway with professional asphalt driveway sealing. Deal with any cracks, potholes, or damage immediately. You should seal-coat the asphalt every two to five years. This will ensure that the surface remains strong and water-resistant. Contact our professionals today to learn how to maintain and improve your driveway.

How Long Does Asphalt Last?

While concrete driveways last about thirty years, a well-maintained asphalt driveway lasts about twenty years. However, many homeowners and business owners prefer the look of the asphalt over aged concrete. Regular maintenance will help keep the curb appeal of your home.

Costs are Lower

The cost of an asphalt driveway is about half the cost of concrete. It can cost around five dollars per foot, depending on the installer and the materials. Keep in mind that there may be extra costs depending on how much space you need to pave and if there are features, like landscaping, that need to be considered.

Weather

Like many other materials, asphalt takes a beating in colder weather. The snow and ice melt into the cracks of the driveway. When the liquid freezes, it expands. This can cause potholes, deep cracks, and structural damage. It is recommended that you repair your driveway before the winter sets. If you are not sure how to repair your driveway and winterize it, please call us today. Our seasoned professionals can help you.

 

 

sidewalk-repair

Can I paint my brick pavers?

Homeowners choose brick pavers for driveways, patios, and walkways. The attractive patterns have low maintenance and sidewalk repair. Why would you want to paint brick pavers? Some homeowners want to touch up the brick pavers or add an extra layer of protection through the stain-resistant coating. In other cases, a homeowner may want to change the overall look of the sidewalk by changing its color entirely. How can you paint brick pavers?

Professional vs. Do-It-Yourself

While you can paint the brick pavers yourself, a professional will not only repaint the sidewalk but will inspect any issues that you might have with the pavers. They can offer sidewalk repair and pinpoint areas that might need replacement. Painting the brick pavers yourself takes time and dedication.

The Process

Before you begin to paint the sidewalk, be sure that you sweep away any grit. A broom or vacuum will get rid of any grit. Spray the sidewalk down. Be sure that the pavers are dry. You want to remove all dirt and grime from the sidewalk. If you do not, you will end up sealing any dirt under the paint.

Additionally, check the weather forecast. You don’t want to paint the walkway on a day with heavy precipitation. Try to plan properly for your painting. If you think you need to stretch the project over a few days, then be sure that rain or snow is not in the forecast. Because you are working with turpentine, be sure to use safety gloves, goggles, and mask.

  1. Stir paint
  2. Dilute paint with 20% mineral turpentine
  3. Apply coats with short-nap roller or paintbrush
  4. Let coat dry before applying next coat

After you finish painting the brick pavers, be sure to clean the brushes properly. Rinse the brushes, rollers, and stirrers with turpentine. After they dry rinse them again with water.

 A Lifetime of Beauty

Brick pavers are durable and attractive. They add to the overall home value and have a unique artistic aesthetic. Adding a coat of paint makes older pavers look like new while also adding an additional protective coat.

driveway-sealing

How Strong is Asphalt?

Homeowners choose asphalt for their driveways because of its strength, cost, and durability. Maintenance, driveway sealing, and installation are significantly more affordable with asphalt. Both concrete and asphalt pave driveways, roads, and parking lots. Both have different benefits and challenges. How durable is an asphalt driveway?

Maintaining Asphalt

Every material has its own unique challenges. Regular maintenance and repair are necessary with asphalt. Asphalt is prone to discoloration and needs driveway sealing every couple of years. Every five to ten years the homeowner needs to coat the entire driveway. Part of this is due to its weaker structure. While affordable, most asphalt driveways last about fifteen to twenty years. Homeowners need to take this into account when determining if they want to purchase asphalt.

Homes in extreme climates will have to maintain their asphalt driveways on a more regular basis. The material becomes soft under high temperatures, causing cracking. Thicker asphalt with a thicker profile will prevent some of the more common issues. Sealing cracks before precipitation settle also lengthen the lifespan of your driveway. Hiring a trusted paving company to install your asphalt driveway greatly minimizes long-term cost.

Aesthetics

Many homeowners like the look of blacktop. Some find it more aesthetically pleasing than plain concrete, gravel driveways, crushed stone, or crushed basalt. Asphalt provides more curb appeal than these options. Other driveway options like stamped or colored concrete, brick, or cobblestone have more options for customization at an additional cost.

Want to install a new driveway, sidewalk, or parking lot? Speak with one of our experienced professionals today. We will help you find the material that best suits your needs.

pothole-repair-methods

How Do You Apply Cold Patch to Asphalt?

Maintaining your asphalt driveway lengthens the driveways lifespan. There are various pothole repair methods available. Apply a simple cold patch to your asphalt driveway for minor potholes. How do you apply a cold patch to asphalt? Follow these simple instructions below.

What Causes Potholes

You can repair a shallow pothole with a cold patch. This is one of the easier do-it-yourself pothole methods. If you need to repave or replace your driveway, be sure to call the professionals. Potholes often occur due to extreme weather conditions. Snow and ice cover your driveway. When the weather warms, water seeps into the cracks of the driveway. Freezing causes the water to expand, causing cracks and unsightly potholes.

Potholes can cause danger to pedestrians. They can damage your vehicles, mainly the tires. Not only that, they are an eyesore. If you don’t repair a pothole, it grows into a larger problem that can be much costlier.

Applying the Cold Patch

Many homeowners choose a cold patch. The cold patch comes in bags. Patch holes as small as several centimeters across. Originally cold patches were a temporary solution. Newer technologies now make it a more permanent solution. The newer cold patch options have polymers. They increase adhesion overall. The cold patch will stick to the older asphalt in your driveway.

Newer cold patches flow slowly like lava from the bag. The materials start curing immediately. Make sure the bottom of the pothole is larger than the top of the pothole. Use a chisel for constructing vertical faces on the sides of the hole. They need to stretch down to the previous layer of solid asphalt. Make sure the pothole is clear of debris and dust.

Apply at least a few centimeters of material. About five centimeters is ideal. Any more and the material may take too long to harden. Use a hand tamper to compact the patch. Wait at least a day before driving or walking on the cold patch. You do not need to seal a cold patch immediately. Typically, you should wait a month before sealing.

If your pothole damage is severe or you would like an assessment on how to best fix your asphalt driveway, give our professionals a call today. We are here to help you.

parking-lot-maintenance

What is the Cheapest Driveway Material?

Homeowners and business owners have many choices when choosing the right type of material for their driveway. Parking lot maintenance, aesthetics, and weather are all important factors in determining the right type of material. What are the materials available for your driveway, and which is the cheapest?

Asphalt Driveways – Pros and Cons

Asphalt driveways continue to be the least costly option. Regular parking lot maintenance is necessary, as asphalt is prone to cracks and potholes. Harsh weather conditions and water damage can easily deteriorate the asphalt. Because of its relatively high maintenance, regular resealing and repair is necessary every few years. While this may be a good option for most situations, realize the amount of work that needs to be done to maintain the asphalt.

Expect to resurface the driveway every ten to fifteen years, especially in harsh climates. Asphalt is relatively easy to plow in the winter, especially when compared with gravel or stone parking lots and driveways. It also provides better traction for pedestrians, minimizing falls. Asphalt has a nice curb appeal.

Concrete Challenges and Benefits

Concrete driveways cost a little bit more than asphalt driveways. It has very similar properties in regards to durability but with a longer lifespan. Sealing is recommended regularly, and concrete is prone to damage and cracking in harsher weather conditions. Concrete does not have the curb appeal of asphalt. Ask about custom options like color and brushing for more aesthetic appeal.

Paving Stone Driveways

While paving stone driveways have a higher cost, they also add the most attractive curb appeal to your home or business. Enjoy a stone pavement lifespan of thirty years or more with low maintenance. Stone blends with landscaping, driveways, and fountains. Brick and stone last in harsh climates. Paving stone requires professional installation. Enjoy a luxurious driveway for decades.

asphalt-driveway-cost

Most Popular Driveway Types for Your Home

Homeowners have many options to consider when choosing the right driveway for their home. From knowing asphalt driveway cost to the benefits of cement or gravel, there are many aspects to consider when choosing the right type of driveway. Discover the most popular driveway designs below.

Asphalt Driveways

Save some money with the asphalt driveway. Because of fairly easy installation and lower asphalt driveway cost, many homeowners select asphalt for their home. Additionally, in colder climates, the black asphalt helps with snowmelt. While durable, an asphalt driveway does need regular resealing every few years.

Concrete

Regardless of region, concrete remains one of the most popular driveway options because of its low installation cost and durability. Cement has some design options like stamps and dying to change the overall aesthetic appeal. While durable, concrete does not fare as well in colder climates.

The Brick Driveway

This costlier option has a more artistic look. More customization is available. Homeowners can select from many different types of brick, as they come in a broad swath of color choices. The biggest drawback? A classy brick driveway can be very costly for most homeowners.

Gravel and Crushed Stone

While a popular choice due to its variety in colors and ease of installation, a gravel driveway is not always the best choice for snowier regions. Gravel consists of small tiny rocks that often shift over time. Minimize the overall shifting by edging and layering the gravel. This will assist its upkeep and maintain its overall aesthetic look. Gravel reduces water runoff. A crushed stone driveway has many of the same benefits and drawbacks as a gravel driveway.

Paver Driveways

The paver driveway consists of concrete, natural stone, or brick, allowing for more unique customization and curb appeal. While a pricier option, paver driveways are aesthetically luxurious and last for a long time.

 

 

 

interlocking-driveway-gravel

How to Remove Weeds from Driveway Cracks

Homeowners constantly lose their battle with weeds. Whether you have an asphalt pavement driveway, cement, or an interlocking driveway gravel entrance, weeds magically reappear. They sprout around gardens and stepping stones, in driveway cracks and potholes, becoming an unseemly nuisance. How can you remove weeds from your driveway for good?

Chemical-Free Options

While many ways exist to terminate weeds, some older green remedies may work. For example, pour vinegar over your interlocking driveway gravel or driveway cracks. Vinegar, a natural herbicide, kills all plants. This means you don’t want to spray vinegar on flowers and your regular landscaping, just where you want to eliminate weeds. Add dish soap to the vinegar for a more effective solution. Another quick solution? Pour hot boiling water over the weeds.

Pull Weeds

If you don’t mind a little bit of hard work, simply pull out the weeds that grow. Prevent future weeds by filling cracks with cement crack filler. You want to pull the weeds before they seed. Once they seed, even if you have pulled every leaf and root, the seeds will start a new batch of plants.

Herbicides

If you have a particularly nasty weed problem or conventional methods don’t work, then you can use a commercial herbicide to reduce weed growth. Any local garden store will have these on the shelf. Read the instructions carefully and be sure to follow all safety directions. Apply regularly to prevent weeds.

Salt

Finally, if you want to prevent weeds from growing, you can apply salt to the soil. Salt will kill any plants trying to grow. Be sure that the salted soil does not wash into your garden, flower beds, or any area that you desire foliage. This will kill wanted plants, too. Follow these simple tips to remove unwanted weeds from your driveway.