Asphalt vs. Micro asphalt: which is better?

18th May 2021

Newly resurfaced driveway with a circular grass island and tree in the very centre.

From regular roads and driveways to footways and car parks, asphalt is very much a part of our world these days. There are plenty of ways to improve it, however, and one of those is via micro asphalt.

What is Asphalt?

This unique surfacing mixture is made up of bits of stone and sand, with roughly 5% of it being bitumen to hold everything together. The sticky black mixture is a by-product of petroleum, but it is extremely useful in binding road surfaces. Regular asphalt needs to be mixed at high heat and applied hot. This keeps the bitumen melted and it helps the surface become more durable once it’s finished setting.

Unfortunately, it does take a while for asphalt to set up so you can walk or drive on it. It also lets off a lot of fumes since it is so hot when applied, which can be bad for the environment. However, for large areas such as car parks or roads which are heavily trafficked, you do get more durability from asphalt, which means you don’t need to replace it as often.

Micro Asphalt: What It Does

Why is micro asphalt so useful? It’s similar to asphalt in that it uses bitumen and aggregates, but it can be applied to the road surface at a much lower temperature. This means it is more eco-friendly and has a lower carbon footprint. Due to fewer fumes, micro asphalt is much safer for workers and those in the area, as well.

This type of surfacing also provides extra traction in areas where the roads are slippery or for footpaths. However, it doesn’t stand up to the same rigorous use that regular asphalt does, so you need to determine whether or not it will wear down too fast. On country roads or driveways, it’s often the perfect solution. It works well for areas that tend to get icy or slippery in inclement weather, too.

Which Option is For You?

Take a good look at what type of use the area to be tarmacked receives. Are there cars on it nonstop? Is foot traffic light? How slick is the area? This will help you decide which asphalt you want to use.

It’s also important to look at pricing, so get quotes for each of the options and then make your final decision. The company may also need to see the area so they can offer advice on your best choice for paving.

Are you in need of asphalt or micro asphalt? At Hazell and Jefferies Limited, we can handle all of your paving needs, large or small. Contact us today !

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