12 Steps to Perfect Paving

May 13, 2019 8:56 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

It might not look like it, but asphalt paving is quite the science—especially if you want the job done right. This post from an experienced asphalt contractor in Lufkin, TX will cover the 12 steps it takes to complete a perfect paving project:

  • Heat the screed: If the screed isn’t properly heated, asphalt will stick to it after contact is made. Keep in mind, however, that too much heat can warp the screed plates, so don’t heat the screed for more than 20 minutes.
  • Center the tow points: With the screed in the “up” position, center both of the tow points. For machines with a sliding gauge, set the point at zero. If there is no gauge, you’ll need to extend the tow points completely and then use a tape measure to find the length of the ram. Once you have that number, divide the length in two to get the tow point.
  • Set the paving width: When setting the paving width, it’s a good idea to balance the width of the extensions. So, if you’re paving four feet, set the right and left extensions to two feet apiece.
  • Set the main screed crown: Add a positive or negative crown using the crown adjustment on the screed.
  • Set the extension slopes: If no extension slope is needed, make sure the extensions are level with the main screed to ensure a perfect pave.
  • Lower the screed: Make sure the screed level is in float before proceeding. Otherwise, you’ll damage the asphalt.
  • Move the machine forward: Proceed slowly about two to three feet to remove slack in the tow points. Removing slack now will help with the next steps.
  • Null the screed: Turn the depth screws until there’s no resistance in the handle. Doing this puts the screed in the “null” position. You might have to go back and forth a few times to ensure that they’re all in the null position.
  • Lower the end gates: The end gates keep the asphalt at the proper width. The front will float on the asphalt to keep it from spilling out from under the end gate.
  • Set the position of the sonic feeders: Keep an eye on the sonic sensor to ensure it’s free and clear of any debris. Should the sensor get dirty, wipe the eye off with a soft, dry cloth. Don’t clean the eye with an abrasive cleaner, though, as this will damage it.
  • Fill the auger chamber: Manually fill up the auger chamber with asphalt until it’s about half full. The goal is to have the chamber filled evenly on both sides to get perfect results. Be sure not to overfill the chamber, as that’ll cause a bump when starting off.
  • Take off: Set the engine speed to high idle and release the brake. Maintain a smooth and steady pace while paving to get the best results.

If you need your asphalt done right, be sure to give Brown’s Paving and Excavation a call! Whether you need repairs, routine maintenance or new asphalt laid down, we’re the asphalt contractor in Lufkin, TX for the job.

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