Types of Asphalt Damage: What’s the Issue?

Types of Asphalt Damage: What’s the Issue?

Asphalt damage comes in many shapes and forms. As such, there are different ways to remedy the issues. Below, we discuss a few of the common types of damage we encounter as an asphalt paving company


Pavement Cracking

There are 6 categories of pavement cracking: Block, Edge, Fatigue, Linear and Transverse, Reflection, and Slippage cracking. Block cracking is caused by a pavement mix that was too old or dry when it was installed and is indicated by circular or square cracks in the pavement. It can be remedied by surface treatment or thin overlays to seal the cracking. 

Edge cracking is indicated by thin cracks along the outside of the surface and is caused by soil beneath the pavement expanding, poor drainage, or encroaching vegetation. The vegetation should be removed and drainage fixed before sealing these cracks.

Fatigue cracking is caused by chronic loads or poor drainage, is identified by numerous small cracks resembling alligator skin, and requires full-depth patching for replacement. Linear and Transverse cracking is identified by cracking along the joins of the pavement and has numerous causes such as improper construction, asphalt shrinkage, and drainage issues. 

Drainage should be improved before filling cracks with slurry. Reflection cracking mirrors sub-layer cracking, joints, or shifts. They should be filled to prevent encroaching moisture.

Slippage cracks appear as wrinkles or large gaps in the asphalt as if it was slipping off the pavement. They occur when the top layers don’t adhere to the sub-layers or when excess sand was mixed in and can be fixed by full or partial depth patches depending on the severity of cracking.



This type of asphalt damage is caused by surface layer compression of asphalt paving, poor compaction during install, or moisture encroachment and is identified by indentations along vehicle wheel paths. Cold mill and overlay or thin patching on the surface should be applied to level the surface.


Grade Depressions

This phenomenon occurs when sections of pavement settle lower than others. Oftentimes, it’s the result of poor installation. Overlay and cold mill can be applied for repairs.



Potholes are one of the most common types of asphalt damage. They occur when road damage goes untreated and worsen due to heavy traffic and poor weather. Across Houston, potholes pose a terrible hazard. 

In many cases, they even cause motor vehicle accidents. Typically, potholes have a simple solution. It’s easy to patch or fill these areas.  

Asphalt Pavement Swells

This type of asphalt damage is caused by fluctuations in the soil beneath the pavement. Repairs for this type of damage require a full-depth patch in order to prevent further damage.


Asphalt Paving Expertise with A1SP

Multiple types of asphalt damage require professional attention. When you need an asphalt paving company Houston trusts, rely on the experts. Our team consists of experts in the field of asphalt paving and is fully equipped to handle the unique needs of our customers.

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