What are the problems with Chip Seal?

Chip seals are a type of asphalt surface treatment that can waterproof pavement and provide a skid-resistant surface. However, chip seals have some disadvantages, including: 

  • Short lifespan: Chip seals typically last 5 to 7 years, while asphalt surfaces can last up to 20 years or more. This means that chip seal surfaces need to be replaced more frequently, which can be costly in the long run. 
  • Chip loss: Chip loss can occur in three main ways:
  • Stripping, which occurs generally along wheelpaths, in long strips
  • Attrition, in which the chips are worn away by friction
  • Scabbing, which is chip loss from patches of chipseal 
  • Chip displacement: The chips can become displaced over time, leading to an uneven and potentially hazardous driving surface. 
  • Noisy: The rough wearing surface of the chipseal generates more roadway noise at any operating speed than do typical asphalt or concrete surfaces. 
  • Application errors: Chip seals can fail if they are applied in the wrong weather, at an improper emulsion application rate, or with dirty aggregate. 
  • Snow plow damage: Snow plows can break the seal on the pavement, allowing the chips to break off

Chip Seal is a good investment for your pavement

At Joseph’s Chip Seal Paving, we pride ourselves on providing quality chip seal paving solutions to our customers across Texas. While we believe that chip seal is a good investment for your paving needs, it’s crucial to be transparent about some of the challenges that come with it. By addressing these concerns upfront, we empower our customers to make informed decisions.

One issue that some people have with chip seal is the initial loose gravel. When freshly laid, chip seal surfaces may have some loose gravel that can be kicked up by vehicles. This can pose a slight inconvenience, but it’s a temporary issue that resolves itself as the surface settles and cures. We always aim to minimize this loose gravel and advise customers to initially drive slowly on their new chip seal driveway to mitigate the effects.

Another consideration is the aesthetic appearance of chip seal. While many people appreciate its rustic look, it does have a less polished appearance compared to asphalt or concrete. It’s important to consider whether this aesthetic fits with your property and personal taste. Of course, the more natural appearance of chip seal is often a selling point for those looking to maintain a specific landscape aesthetic.

Although chip seal is durable, especially in the hot, dry Texas climate, it’s not as robust as asphalt when it comes to heavy-duty usage. If you expect to have heavy trucks or industrial machinery using the surface, chip seal might not be the best choice. However, for typical residential applications and lighter commercial usage, chip seal remains a durable and long-lasting option.

Maintenance can also be a concern for some property owners. While chip seal is relatively low-maintenance, it still requires some care to reach its full lifespan, which is typically around 7-10 years. This might include periodic resealing or minor repairs to address any issues that arise from weather conditions or regular wear and tear. However, when these minor maintenance needs are balanced against the lower initial installation costs, chip seal often emerges as a cost-effective choice in the long run.

Finally, not all chip seal is created equal, and the quality of the installation can significantly affect the longevity and appearance of your surface. This is why it’s crucial to work with a reputable contractor who understands the nuances of chip seal application. Joseph’s Chip Seal Paving specializes in quality chip seal installation, ensuring that you get the most value for your investment.

In summary, while chip seal surfaces have some challenges, they are still an excellent investment for many property owners. Its affordability, aesthetic appeal, and suitability for the Texas climate make it a compelling option despite the concerns outlined. To find out whether chip seal is the right option for your paving needs, call us at 682-225-5578 for a free estimate. We’re more than happy to discuss your individual circumstances and help you make an informed decision.