Why You Should Care About Chip Sealing

Chip sealing is a form of road repair that seems to be catching onto more than what some drivers bargained for. Towards the end of summer Jackson County, Oregon, drivers noticed that some of their roads turned into mostly gravel. Just under 90 roadway miles in the city and rural areas were repaired. The choice to use chip sealing resulted in loose rocks on the road, which can strike windshields and cause more cracks for your business to fix.

Though there are several options when it comes to repairing roads, chip sealing slightly differs. The process involves putting a thin layer of asphalt on the surface and then putting a layer of small loose rocks on top. From here the small rocks are pressed into place with a power roller, the weight of continuous vehicles rolling on top of it then help to create a more stable and somewhat smooth appearance.

“The primary benefit of crack sealing and chip sealing is the prevention of storm water intrusion into the road foundation,” according to the Jackson County Roads official website.

There are benefits to using either completely asphalt or chip sealing to repair a road. Some of the downsides can lead to increased windshield chips that need to be repaired. Jackson County has a three step method for determining the priority for repairing its roads. The first steps are a field survey and a defect scoring method to prioritize before the final rehabilitation project is started. The choice to use chip sealing is becoming more common for the county because of the drastic differences in costs.

“For example, managers might weigh the advantages of one mile of overlay costing $100,000 and prolonging the pavement life 15 years against a chip seal costing $15,000 and prolonging the pavement life 5 years,” according to Jackson County Roads official website.

Another notable difference between these methods are the overall time it takes to pave the roadway. Normally through typical paving, workers can cover about 70 feet per minute, but chip sealing allows workers to cover about 300 feet in the same amount of time. In essence, the quicker the roads are repaired, the quicker more drivers can get back on the road.

According to the county site, there is a higher chance for flying rocks and excess dust forming in areas that use chip sealing on its roads. More airborne rocks are bound to strike windshields, which in turn, may result in an increase for your business.

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