Cape Seal

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General Parameters & Advice

Since cape seal is a combination treatment and due to the fact that the bottom layer is a chip seal treatment, the site selection for chip seals should govern.  Chip seals are designed for application on pavements that have adequate structural capacity. If a pavement is displaying structural distress, a different treatment should be selected. If a pavement is experiencing active rutting and/or shoving, it is not a candidate for chip sealing.

Site Selection for Specific Distresses

Loss of Fines

Although Cape Seals are widely used in the preservation of good roads, the treatment may also be used to address specific pavement distresses early on. Thus solving pavement problems early and avoiding more invasive measures that may be required later on.  For Cape Seals, we are looking for chip seal candidate roadways due to that being the primary treatment used to address the existing roadway surface distress.

LOSS OF FRICTION:  cape seals increase the skid resistance of the roadway. If there is a roadway that has low friction numbers, a cape seal can increase those friction numbers due to the excellent friction numbers slurry seal or micro surfacing can give a roadway.

MINOR CRACKING/WATER INFILTRATION: chip seals address minor cracks, less than ¼ inch (0.6 cm). Remember that water is our number one enemy and anything we can do to keep the water out is good.

Road Type, Surface, and Traffic Specifics

Cape Seal - State Highway

Cape seals can be used on a variety of road types, and throughout the range of traffic level:

  • Interstate highways
  • State highways
  • Collector streets
  • Local streets


  • Good Candidate - Minor Cracking
  • Good Candidate - Friction Loss
  • Bad candidate - Rutting
  • Bad candidate - Wide crack