Chip Seal

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Suitable Conditions

Weather plays an extremely important role in chip seal operations.  Here are the ideal conditions for this treatment:

  • Air and surface temperatures are above 60F (16C) and rising for emulsified asphalts and 70F (21C) and rising for asphalt cements
  • Humidity is 50 percent or lower
  • Little to no wind
  • No rain in the forecast

Unsuitable Conditions

Here are some unsuitable conditions for chip seal construction:

  • Cool nights make it very tough for chip seals to cure or gain strength.  This is why there are usually seasonal limitations on chip seal construction.
  • Strong wind can distort the fan pattern of the asphalt being sprayed which could lead to streaking and uneven distribution.  An apron can be installed around the spray bar to minimize the effects of wind if necessary.
  • High humidity can lead to longer break times for emulsified asphalts.
  • Saturated roadways can lead to longer break times due to water still being in the roadway.
  • Rainfall could lead to asphalt running off the roadway which could lead to rock loss.