Can Asphalt Paving Be Done in the Rain?

Why Is Rain an Issue for Asphalt Paving Contractors?

Virtually all residential and commercial paving contractors would love to spend every day constructing new parking lots, driveways, or thoroughfares, but this simply is not possible. Most people understand that it is impossible to install an asphalt overlay or a new asphalt pavement in the snow, and the Traverse City area averages about 55 snowy days during a typical year. However, once the weather warms up, the rain moves in, and the area usually averages about twice as many rainy days as snowy days. Most of the rain normally falls between April and October, which are traditionally the best months for paving Traverse City properties. Despite this, paving in the rain virtually guarantees that the pavement will be unsightly, and it will also have a shorter life.

Why Does Rain Negatively Affect Fresh Asphalt Paving?

Asphalt contains various oils that are highly effective at repelling water. When rain falls on fresh asphalt, it triggers these oils to collect on the surface so that the water cannot penetrate. This typically halts the curing process, but there is also the possibility that the rain will cool the surface so much that the oils remain trapped far below the surface layer, and the lower layers may never cure properly. Furthermore, the cooling effects of the rain drop the temperature of the asphalt that the contractor’s crew members are trying to place and compact. If the temperature falls too much, the material may clump together or be impossible to compact sufficiently. In addition, raindrops can exert enough force to crack or pit uncured asphalt, which can leave the surface unsightly as well as dramatically expedite the need for repairs.

Why Would a Waterlogged Ground Keep a Parking Lot Paving Company From Installing Asphalt?

Whether you are talking about an asphalt overlay or a new construction project, the asphalt must be thoroughly compacted if the pavement is to be strong and durable. If the ground is saturated, your Traverse City paving company will find it extremely difficult or completely impossible to achieve proper compaction. A second issue can arise if an asphalt overlay is placed on top of an existing pavement that a recent rain has left damp. When the contractor’s workers place hot asphalt on a damp pavement, the moisture can turn to steam, and this steam can be left trapped between the old and the new asphalt. After it cools, the steam reverts to water, which can then penetrate to the foundation and weaken it. As a result, you could find yourself paying for a costly repair before your asphalt pavement is a month or two old.

Trust Global Outdoor Solutions to Do the Job Right

We have many years of industry experience, and we have established an extraordinary reputation for quality, integrity, and service. We offer a wide range of services and products, including Asphalt PavingSafe Seal SealcoatingParking Lot StripingAsphalt MillingSnow RemovalAsphalt Patching, ADA compliance, Crack Repairs, and Infrared Asphalt Repair. We offer free quotes, so submit our online request form today at If you prefer, you can call us at 231-715-7899 or 800-ASPHALT. Contractors call ahead to purchase bulk Safe Seal sealcoat, Derry crack sealants,  and other asphalt supplies.