Asphalt Types

Natural asphalt consists of mineral-bearing slabs deposited onto clay slates, then squeezed by heat to make them into a stiff white paste. Natural asphalt is usually thicker than petroleum asphalt due to the additional natural lubrication derived from the clay. In contrast to petroleum asphalt, natural asphalt is made from thin, water-permeable sheets rather than a continuous sheet. Although the procedure to make asphalt is the same, it’s essential to realize that petroleum products can be mixed with asphalt to create new types of asphalt. With this in mind, any asphalt not listed as asphalt polythene should never be mixed with petroleum products.


Apex Asphalt Jacksonville FL is a trendy choice for asphalt paving because it’s very durable, cost-effective, environmentally friendly, slip-resistant, as well as fire-resistant. The primary component of asphalt is benzene, a chemical compound known for its fire safety properties. Benzene is commonly added to asphalt to increase its tensile strength and resistance to flame. Benzene also acts as an antiseptic, making it ideal for paved roads where people may walk on or around. Because of its unique qualities, asphalt is often referred to as “the other asphalt” due to its similarity to petroleum products such as gasoline, diesel, transmission fluid, paint, or gasoline.

The majority of asphalt used for road construction is thick enough to resist road salt, which is added during winter months to prevent ice formation on the roads. Asphalt is also combined with tar, a liquid petroleum product that is highly effective at reducing tire tread wear and inclement disposal. Tar is typically blended with asphalt during road construction to form a complete asphalt product. A number of chemicals and binders are added to tar to enhance its consistency and performance characteristics.

The three layers of asphalt (a primary layer, an aggregate base course, and a cover) have distinct physical characteristics to address differently during installation. Asphalt base courses are the flexible, exterior layer that is applied to the asphalt surface. Aggregates, or “base material,” is what provides the basis for the final layer, which is the protective coating. Both layers add thickness and strength to the pavement and protect it from weathering. In terms of the physical properties, asphalt base courses are highly elastic and flexible, while the aggregate base course is rigid and more sturdy.

The mix asphalt pavement is made up of materials such as coarse sand and coarse gravel, with water mixed in between. This type of asphalt pavement is good for intercity and grade-highway driving because the fine gravel does not compact into tight areas that can lead to cracking. The water in between the coarse gravels acts as an anti-corrosion and acts as an attractive color for the mix asphalt pavement. Asphalt mix asphalt is used on many state and federal roads, but is less commonly used for residential and commercial driveways.

The third variety of asphalt pavement is called the hot-mix asphalt pavement. Hot-mix asphalt creates a thicker, more durable product than the other two varieties of asphalt. Some asphalt dealers mix the hot asphalt with diesel, making the product even stronger. Unfortunately, this higher Density Polymer (DPM) product also costs more.

A special kind of aggregate known as hydrocarbon fine aggregate, or granular asphalt, is often mixed with asphalt to create a material more dependable in severe weather. Asphalt and hydrocarbon fine aggregate is commonly used on state highway systems, but hydrocarbon is also frequently mixed with asphalt on federal and interstate highways. This asphalt pavement product has better wear resistance and can add years to the life of your asphalt pavement. As a result, this type of asphalt pavement is more commonly used on driveways, sidewalks, and parking lots, because it’s easier to maintain and less expensive than fine aggregate. This product is most commonly used on interstates, rivers and lakes, and other bodies of water.