Can You Start Asphalt Paving in Winter?

Can You Start Asphalt Paving in Winter? Grand Rapids MI

The short answer is “no.” But we are sometimes able to start asphalt paving in late fall or early spring if the weather cooperates. The ground must be dry and not frozen for us to pave asphalt surfaces. This means no snow or rain.

Customers often ask if they really have to wait until spring for a new asphalt driveway or parking lot. Our advice? It’s best to hold off on asphalt paving until we’ve moved past winter.

When’s the Best Time for Asphalt Paving?

The earliest we recommend asphalt paving is mid to late spring once the snow melts. That way, you’ll have a better chance of unfrozen ground and dry weather conditions. While we understand you may be in a hurry to replace your asphalt parking lot or driveway, you’re better off waiting until the seasons change.

Tips for Asphalt Paving in Cold Weather

The same strategies we use to pave in July won’t necessarily produce the same results once the temperature drops. Temperature plays a huge role in being able to properly compact hot-mix asphalt, which affects lifespan.

Here are our tips for paving in the late spring or early fall.

Don’t Pave on Frozen Ground

Do NOT let paving contractors lay down asphalt while the ground is still frozen. Otherwise, the asphalt will turn into a poor quality mixture that will break down almost immediately.

Even though the asphalt mixture is kept at high temperatures, it will freeze and stiffen if poured on the cold ground. Asphalt poured on frozen ground will result in a lot of potholes and cracks when the snow melts.

You should never let a contractor pressure you into paving when the weather conditions aren’t right. Also, don’t ignore your gut feeling about a company if something seems off. Be sure to check out our blog post on what red flags to look out for in an asphalt contractor.

Wait for Dry Weather Conditions

The weather conditions need to be dry while paving an asphalt driveway or parking lot. This means it can’t be raining or snowing. The ground must also be completely dry, which rules out paving asphalt immediately after rain or snowfall.

Just like with paving on frozen ground, the quality of asphalt is compromised when paved in the rain or snow. This is because temperature affects how well hot-mix asphalt is able to flow so it can be properly compacted. Proper asphalt compaction affects the lifespan of your newly paved surface.

Work Quickly

Since the weather can change quickly in Michigan, it’s important that parking lot and driveway pavers use their time efficiently. Asphalt paving during the late fall or early spring has unique challenges that require contractors who have prior experience with cold weather paving. Paving contractors will need to be able to get their crew and equipment over to the job site as soon as possible before the weather changes.

Request Your Free Estimate Today!

Our paving contractors in Grand Rapids, MI, are dedicated to helping you maintain the function and appearance of your asphalt driveway or parking lot year-round. We offer a range of asphalt services to help you enjoy your paved surface for as long as possible. To request a free estimate for asphalt paving, call A-1 Asphalt Inc. at (800) 871-4401.

This blog post has been updated.