Q&A / 

Chip Seal Video

Hi, I'm Tim Carter and we're going to have a little fun today. Look at the pavement, it is actually a roadway in the town where I live in New Hampshire. Take a close look and tell me what you think.

It is just a road surface leading down to the main road. My car locks are on the pavement for scale purposes. The road surface is very durable. It has already been plowed twice so far this season.

But check out the surface right next to it. This section is close in appearance to the other section. But there is a difference between them. The section under my keys is call Sealed-and-Chip, or Tar-and-Chip. That consists of small pieces of stones that are placed in asphalt emulsion that is very sticky. This causes it to stick to the existing road surface.

The second pavement is regular blacktop. Guess what? It uses the same stones, uses the same asphalt basically, but in addition it uses a little bit of fine or coarse sand that is mixed in to it. But after a few years, that wears off and then both surfaces end up looking the same.

That's why brand-new blacktop looks very black and very smooth. The sand fills in the gaps between the stones giving it the smooth surface. The black coloring is from the asphalt covering all those stones. But as it wears off over time, it looks like the sealed-and-chip. So many roads are being done in the sealed-and-chip method.


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