Chip Seal Best Practices
There are 16 pages dedicated to chip seals, covering everything from materials, design, equipment, construction, joints, seasonal limitations, precautions, distress types, etc. The following simple safeguards will greatly increase the chance of success when a chip seal is constructed:
- Assure the existing pavement structure is strong enough to support expected traffic.
- Perform the mix design with materials representative of those to be used on the job.
- Use aggregate which is free from dust and slightly damp for the best results.
- Inspect and calibrate the equipment to ensure proper operation.
- Select the proper type and weight of rollers.
- Follow proper construction techniques.
- Provide proper traffic control.
- Perform the work in weather conditions suitable for the type and grade of asphalt selected.
Adhering to these simple safeguards will help prevent problems such as streaking, bleeding and loss of cover aggregate; the three most common distress types for chip seals. Yes, MS-16 provides descriptions of these distresses and lists the causes for each.
Getting back to sound fundamentals of pavement maintenance and preservation is critical in these funding challenging times. AI's new MS-16 Manual provides critical information based on the latest technologies to do just that.
Dr. Mark Buncher is Director of Engineering for the Asphalt Institute