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What Causes Potholes in the Lower Mainland?

Properties in the Lower Mainland areas of B.C., including Richmond, Surrey, and Delta, are vulnerable to paved surface damage, such as potholes. It helps to understand the three most common causes of potholes and why pothole repair and prevention are your best defenses against parking lot damage.

3 Common Causes of Potholes

B.C. tends to have weather that sometimes feels more like an eternal spring than a distinct changing of the seasons. As a result, paved surfaces undergo a longer period where changing temperatures lead to pavement damage. There are three common causes of potholes, beginning with the freeze-thaw cycles in the area:

  1. Freeze-thaw cycles
    • While the rest of the country experiences a period of deep freeze in the winter, B.C.’s milder climate tends to create more temperature fluctuations in quick succession. Spring is the worst time of year in climates with four seasons, as this is the time when there is more freezing and thawing. In B.C., this is true throughout the winter months as well. The freeze-thaw cycle damages parking lots and paved surfaces because it causes the ground beneath the pavement to expand and contract. When water below asphalt freezes, it expands, forcing the pavement upward, and when it thaws, it contracts so the pavement sinks. This heaving motion damages brittle, older pavement that no longer has a pliable consistency. As this process continues, cracks develop and become more pronounced, eventually causing chunks of asphalt to break away, creating potholes.
  2. Water infiltration
    • Even tiny cracks in the pavement can lead to water infiltration issues. Water infiltrates the paved surface and can pool below the foundation, contributing to the above-freezing and thawing problems. However, water infiltration can also occur by water pooling, puddles, and even minor flooding of parking lots. Although these areas don’t see much snow, if snow and temperatures rise, a parking lot with insufficient drainage can lead to serious water infiltration issues that erode the asphalt, causing cracks and, eventually, potholes.
  3. Traffic
    • The final element in the mix is traffic. The weight of trucks and cars puts a constant strain on the parking lot, contributing to the development of potholes. When parking lots have cracks, the weight of traffic can worsen the cracks and break away pieces of pavement, leading to potholes.

Potholes: The Result of Weakened Asphalt Surfaces

As you can see, the three common causes of potholes all relate to the weakening of the asphalt surface. As a result, it is imperative to conduct ongoing parking lot maintenance to protect your asphalt from severe damage. Although you can’t change the weather conditions, you can take steps to help protect your asphalt from weakening with the following maintenance and repair processes:

  • Pothole repair: Using infrared asphalt repair is the most efficient way to eliminate potholes from your parking lot. The existing asphalt is warmed, bringing back its pliability so it can be mixed with fresh asphalt to patch the hole. The pavement is dried and cleared of debris to ensure nothing interferes with the patchwork’s adherence. The result is a seamless parking lot impervious to seepage, helping prevent further cracks from forming.
  • Preventive Pavement Maintenance: You can prolong the look and life of your parking lot with a preventive pavement maintenance plan to address cracks in their early stages. The plan provides regular parking lot maintenance to reduce cracks and the risk of pothole formation.
  • Crack repairs: Crack repairs first use air compression to remove dirt, dust, and debris and a torch to burn away vegetation and dry the ground. Once the area is cleared of debris, a strong, durable crack-filling material is applied and sealed with an edge-to-edge bond to restore a watertight finish.

Expert Pothole Repair for Your Property with EverLine Coatings

Although it can be worrisome thinking about your parking lot being out of service, it takes less than 6 to 8 hours to complete most repairs (for EverLine Coatings). As a result, you can restore your parking lot to total capacity to reduce the inconvenience to your visitors, customers, and tenants.

Ongoing parking lot maintenance and pothole repairs provide the attention your parking lot needs to slow deterioration, prevent water seepage and create a crack and pothole-free surface. Your property retains its value with a welcoming environment that creates positive first impressions. Your parking lot is also safer, reducing the risk of accidents and injuries.

Learn more about EverLine Coatings Richmond, Surrey, Delta pothole repair services!

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Richmond / Surrey / Delta EverLine Office

Phone: (778) 336-2550


Owner/Operator – Ilia Oussov 

Serving the Greater Richmond / Surrey / Delta area, including:

  • Richmond
  • Surrey
  • Delta
  • White Rock
  • Port Roberts
  • Lulu Island
  • Westham Island
  • Clayton Heights
  • Cloverdale
  • Burkeville