Tire Scuff Marks on New Sealcoating:Why Does it Happen?

September 22nd, 2010

Tire Marks & Scuffing on New Sealcoating

Because Empire Parking Lot Services writes a lot about all things paving and concrete we get many people calling or writing us with questions about their experience they had with their contractors.  The only thing we tell them is why something might have happened and how we would handle it if it was our project.

This month we received a telephone call from a frustrated gal in Washington calling with complaints about some sever tire scuffing.

The damage had occurred on their freshly sealed parking lot.  She was looking for an impartial opinion on the situation. Apparently what had happened is that they had their parking lots asphalt repaired, then followed up with some parking lot sealcoating & striping.  Not long after the parking lot was completed they started noticing some sever tire scuffing, and power steering marks. They got worse and worse and felt that their contractor had some liability in the matter. The contractor told them to wait a few weeks and see if the scuffing would start to flatten out.  Sure enough the seal did eventually even out and the scuffing resided, but the striping was tore up in the meantime and the customer felt it should be redone.  We aren’t sure what happen on that project, but in our opinion it comes down to experience. So here comes the reasons!

The Possible Reasons for Tire Scuffing on Fresh Sealcoat

There are many things that can be factors in what causes seal to scuff or track after is has been applied. The number one reason is that seal coats have been retooled over the last few years resulting in a product that is resistant to cold cracking. The switch to Performance Graded (PG) asphalt cement (the binder that holds the mix together) has improved the durability of the mix by reducing the incidence of cold weather cracking. However, in most cases, this has also resulted in the use of a ‘softer’ asphalt cement, which has resulted in HMA mixtures that are more prone to tire scuffing, especially during periods of hot weather during the first season of use.

Here are some other factors to consider when tire tracking occurs:

  • Hot Weather is the number one reason sealcoat will track. Try to do sealcoating when the weather is mild. Early Spring is the best time to sealcoat if the temperature is above 76 Degrees.
  • Sealcoat Film Thickness.  Make sure your installer is applying sealcoat at about 32 Mils wet thickness. Anymore is going to be prone to tire scuffing. If a thicker coat of seal is desired than we recommend  applying a second coat of seal.
  • Humidity can be another condition that can affect scuffing.
  • Power Steering on vehicles. Try to not let vehicles on fresh sealcoat for at least 24 hours if at all possible.

About Empire Parking Lot Services

Empire Parking Lot Services is Southern California’s Number one choice when it comes to asphalt repair, concrete repair, sealcoating, and parking lot striping. In Addition to these services we offer ADA updates and repairs such as truncated domes, wheel stop installations, traffic signs and bollard installations. For warehouse managers we offer warehouse floor striping and interior warehouse concrete repair services. Call and ask for one of our educated estimators to come to your facility or parking lot and answer any question that you have pertaining to asphalt repair.

Call us Toll free at 877-760-2757

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