Upgraded Infrared Asphalt Repair Technology Makes Short Work of Winter Potholes
Snarled traffic, vehicle damage, injury, and even litigation can result if the asphalt damage is not repaired in a timely manner. But many contractors using traditional “remove and replace” asphalt repair essentially cannot work in winter.
“Municipal engineers typically prohibit asphalt repair in cold weather, because if the asphalt goes down cold, it starts to ravel or fall apart,” says Don Jimenez, owner of Asphalt Technology, a Clovis, Calif.-based asphalt repair company of public and commercial surfaces. “Water intrusion just accelerates the asphalt failure, particularly after the subgrade is compromised.”
Financial cutbacks in the tough economy have also made fixing potholes more difficult, as traditional “remove and replace” asphalt repair can take three vehicles and six men several hours to saw cut, jackhammer, and remove old asphalt, then replace with new asphalt in a typical 5-foot by 5-foot patch.
Fortunately, an upgraded infrared asphalt repair technology is making short work of winter potholes, as cash-strapped contractors, businesses, and municipalities are achieving seamless cold-weather asphalt repair in less than 20 minutes at a fraction of traditional remove and replace cost, Kasi Infrared contends.
Typical infrared technique shortens asphalt repair by heating, fusing, and compacting recycled asphalt with minimal equipment, labor, and new material.
Jimenez, however, turned to a new upgraded infrared asphalt repair option by Kasi, a worldwide leader in infrared asphalt repair that makes the process even faster, deeper, and more uniform, which can accelerate winter asphalt restoration. The infrared chamber upgrade enables seamless asphalt repair in under 20 minutes (of a typical 5’ x 5’ patch including preparation and clean up), and doubles infrared chamber longevity to over 10 years. The improved infrared technique can provide superior public or commercial asphalt repairs (such as roads, highways, and parking lots) at one-third the cost of conventional methods.
At the heart of what makes this possible is a new, deeper 8 converter chamber which allows more asphalt to be heated faster, deeper, and more evenly. The greater heating coverage, in fact, can soften existing asphalt to be patched, up to a 3-inch-depth in as little as four minutes, about half the time of typical infrared heat chambers.
“With the greater heat coverage, we can put down more asphalt in half the time, even in winter,” says Jimenez, who transports his upgraded infrared asphalt repair equipment in Kasi’s Minute Man trailer-mounted system, which has an asphalt reclaimer that keeps asphalt at plant mix temperature in any kind of weather. “We’re busy through the winter because of this infrared method and our hot asphalt in the reclaimer box.”
“In 20 minutes we can complete an actual demo repair,” adds Jimenez. “A lot of people say, ‘I’ll just take 20 minutes of your time.’ But to literally fix an asphalt problem in 20 minutes and have it look better than saw cut and replace – it blows their mind. When I do a demo, I’ve won 99% of the jobs on everything from parking lots to road repair.”
The more uniform heat coverage also eliminates potential hot or cold spots, making the raking or “scarifying” of existing asphalt to remove seams even easier. “When the asphalt is heated more evenly with deeper penetration, scarifying takes half the physical effort even in cold weather,” says Jimenez. “There’s no bending over, scratching at a hard spot that never really got hot enough. By the day’s end, we’re only half as tired and can do more jobs.”
Since the wider heating converter design generates more heat with better coverage, it also reduces the need for replacement parts used in typical asphalt infrared repair technology. With fewer replacement parts, the new design doubles the life expectancy of Kasi’s upgraded infrared heat chamber to over 10 years.
“Usually, contractors don’t realize anything is going to break until they’re in the middle of a job because equipment doesn’t break until you use it,” says Jimenez. “But downtime is killer. For us, the infrared upgrade is even more cost effective because there’s less wear and tear and less need for replacement parts. So we’re more productive with less downtime.”
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