5 Crucial Reasons to Not Let Cracks in Asphalt Be Ignored

From parking lots to driveways to streets, asphalt is everywhere around us. Cracks will eventually appear on every asphalt surface, but it’s important not to ignore the cracks. By taking proactive measures, you will be able to fix the problem more quickly and help prevent further damage.

1. You Can Trip Over Them

Even if you watch where you’re going, it’s likely that you will trip over an uneven crack in the asphalt. Abrasions, dislocations, and broken bones can come from tripping and falling onto a hard and rough surface. Worse, if a guest to your home walks along your driveway and winds up tripping and falling, then not only will you have allowed someone who means something to you to become injured, but you might also wind up on the wrong end of a lawsuit.

2. You Can Damage Your Vehicle

Driving over an uneven crack can hurt your tires. Further, if the crack is uneven enough, then you might even damage the exhaust system or other parts of the underside of your car. If you happen to cause a leak in the oil pan, then you could even wind up with a seized motor. There is also the specter of someone else’s vehicle receiving damage to consider along with the ramifications that go along with such a mishap.

3. The Cracks Will Get Worse

At a basic level,asphalt is a granular conglomeration made up of sand, gravel, and a binding material called bitumen. Over time, the binding power of the bitumen can break down, allowing water to get into the spaces between the gravel and the sand. When that happens, particularly when the water freezes, asphalt without cracks will get them, and the cracks already in the asphalt will get bigger and deeper. Eventually, potholes will form. At that time, the chance of further cracks and potholes increases greatly, and it’s likely that you’ll have to rip it all up and have it replaced because patches will just have the same problems.

4. Repairs Cost More the More Cracks There Are

You should repair any cracks as soon as they appear. Ideally, you should maintain the asphalt of your driveway over time so that cracks don’t appear in the first place, but if they do, have them fixed right away. Fixing multiple cracks and/or potholes, not to mention ripping out the driveway and having it redone, is much more expensive than just fixing one crack at a time before the cracks multiply and/or grow larger.

5. Cracks Could Indicate Shifting Ground

Sometimes, even the most carefully laid and maintained asphalt can crack because of the shifting ground underneath it. If the ground is near your home, then its shifting could lead to flooding and structural damage to your home’s foundation. Worse, it could be a precursor to a sinkhole opening up on your property. Granted, this is a rare occurrence, but it pays to have otherwise unexplained cracks and/or potholes checked out before disaster strikes.