Epic Paving & Contracting has provided commercial and residential property owners with professional resources in asphalt paving for more than 20 years. With over two decades of paving experience, we are confident in our abilities to build an asphalt driveway the right way. While we always recommend hiring a professional for this laborious task, we also respect that some people enjoy a DIY Challenge. To help you lay a perfect pavement, we’ve created this easy to follow guide on the right way to build an asphalt driveway.
Step 1: Clear Debris and Old Pavement
The first step when installing new asphalt is to remove the former, damaged surface. Whether it’s asphalt or concrete, start stripping it all away so you can start with a fresh canvas. You will most likely need heavy machinery such as bobcats and forklifts to help you remove the old paving. As you most likely don’t have these items in your backyard, an equipment rental company will come in handy here.
Step 2: Grade The Slope to Ensure Proper Drainage
Appropriate water drainage is imperative to a durable, long lasting driveway. Effective drainage will help prevent your pavement from collapsing prematurely. Grading the surface will allow water to run off to the sides and puddle there.
Step 3: Prepare The Sub-Base Layer
The sub-base gives your pavement a stable foundation and is the main support. In winter the sub-base even acts as a frost barrier that reduces damage from repeated freezing and thawing. Pay attention to base thickness, base stability, and compaction.
Step 4: Proof Is In The Pudding
As soon as the sub-base is fully graded and compacted it’s time to proof roll. Proof rolling ensures the underlying surface is strong and ready to support new asphalt. If the base flexes an inch or more under the weight of the roller, then it likely won’t properly support the pavement. Undercutting can repair soft spots; simply dig 2’ to 3’ below the surface and replace the material with something stronger.
Step 5: Bind It All Together
Once you have the sub-base laid down and the soft areas of the base repaired, it’s time to add your binder layer. The binder layer is made up of a mixture of aggregate and oil which will help support your asphalt and create a stronger, more durable pavement.
Step 6: Install The New Asphalt!
As soon as you have all your driveway’s support structures in place you can begin applying the top layer of fresh surface asphalt. Surface asphalt is made up of sand, oil, and small aggregate. The combination of these materials provides a smooth, shiny and attractive finish.
Now take a step back and admire your hard work!