FAQ

About Our Asphalt Patch

How do I apply RockAsphalt© to a pothole filled with water?

Just remove loose debris or ice, then pour the material directly into the water filled hole. The asphalt will displace most of the water. Additional water will be displaced once the patch is compacted. Remember to leave a 1 inch crown on the patch because pressure from traffic will continue to compact the material. Over time, this process gradually forces moisture out of the patch, reducing the probability of freeze-thaw damage.

Repairs over 1 square foot and 2 inches deep should be applied in 2 inch layers until desired grade is achieved, packing down each layer before applying the next.

I didn’t use all the RockAsphalt© in the bag, can I use the remaining material later?

Yes. Just seal the bag opening tightly, and the remaining material will stay usable up to 8 months. To ensure optimal performance, however, we recommend using the patching material within 3-6 months of first exposure to air. While it may be possible to “fluff up” old stale material, we can’t guarantee the longevity of the patch under those circumstances.

Why is RockAsphalt© sold in 50lb bags?

For one, we’ve found that 50lb bags are the optimal size for a single person to transport and use. The sealed bag also eliminates the possibility of contamination from salt, sand, dirt, etc. that affect the performance of the product. More generally, shipping RockAsphalt© in tightly sealed bags allows us to maintain a higher-level of quality control than asphalt made at a local production plant. Oftentimes when cold mix asphalt is produced locally, for instance, the plant uses just a single gradation of aggregate mixed with large amounts of binder for stability. (This can occur even if the design specs recommend otherwise.) In contrast, because we control every step in the production of our asphalt, we’re able to maintain strict QC and mix design values. Not only does this increase the performance of our patching material, it ensures the consistency of our product as well.

How does RockAsphalt© compare with other patches in regards to cost?

While our material costs more than conventional hot or cold mix asphalt up front, once all factors and long-term expenses are considered, our patch actually costs less. The four factors that drive the cost of pothole repair are labor, equipment, time, and material. With RockAsphalt©, you save in regards to labor, equipment, time, but pay a bit more for the patching material. People often fail to consider the hidden cost of things like squaring the edges of the pothole, applying a tack coat, driving across town to the local asphalt plant, waiting for asphalt to cure, using special compaction tools, and so on. Once these costs are counted, however, RockAsphalt© is the most cost-efficient pothole solution on the market today. (That’s from our experience, if you find otherwise, please email us and we’ll remove that sentence!)

Are there seasonal grades of RockAsphalt©?

Our asphalt doesn’t depend on additives or binders that become unreliable outside a specific range of temperatures or moisture-levels. (Often hot mix asphalt isn’t even manufactured during cold weather because it crystallizes under 35 degrees F.) Because our bitumen-bearing Anacacho rocks set on compaction, our patch remains workable and reliable in -40° to 168° Fahrenheit and in water-filled holes. Long story short, that’s why we don’t produce seasonal grades. Our patching material performs in snow storms and extreme heat alike. And erratic weather won’t cause recently applied patches to migrate either. With RockAsphalt©, you can expect fewer weather delays, less failed patches, and very little wasted material.

How long will it take the patch to harden or be ready for traffic?

Short answer: RockAsphalt© is ready for traffic immediately after compaction. Remember to leave a 1 inch crown on top because the binding process will continue as traffic applies additional pressure.

Long answer: To understand how our patch sets up, you have to know about our native asphalt’s unique binding action. Whereas cold patches are made to set up as their hydrocarbon solvents evaporate, our native asphalt sets up by compaction, not evaporation. And this has several important implications for the performance of our patch.

If an asphalt patch cures too rapidly, it doesn’t settle into the surrounding pavement leading to problems as the patch weathers over time. (Fast-curing patches, for instance, quickly become rigid and thus trap air voids that later fill with moisture and cause failure during freeze-thaw cycles.) On the other hand, if an asphalt patch cures too slowly, a different set of problems arise. While slow-curing patches typically adhere more permanently to the sides of potholes, it can take hours or days before these patches are ready for traffic. Drive over these patches too soon and they rut and shove, or in certain cases, fail altogether.

The unique binding action of our patching material makes it quite different from both slow and fast-curing alternatives. Like fast-curing patches, our patch is ready for traffic immediately because our rocks secrete bitumen and bind on compaction. Yet like slow-curing patches, our asphalt remains flexible and settles into the hole over time as traffic provides additional pressure. This allows our product to continue to fill small voids and crevices that would otherwise cause the patch to fail as it weathers. That and the fact that our naturally occurring asphalt doesn’t rely on fickle chemicals or evaporation like manufactured asphalts gives it a clear advantage over other patches on the market today.

How soon can sealer be applied to a patch?

We suggest crews wait 30 days before sealing.

Is a primer or tack coat needed when applying RockAsphalt©?

Not at all. Since RockAsphalt© is self-priming, our unique asphalt blend bonds tightly to the walls of the pothole without needing additional primers or tack coats.

Should I put a board over the patch while compacting?

No, for the best results with RockAsphalt© we recommend driving directly on the material. The weight of the car will properly compact the material. Placing a board between your tires and the material actually disperses the weight more unevenly and thus fails to properly compact the patch.

Is RockAsphalt© compliant with state laws governing Volatile Organic Carbon emissions?

Yes, while VOC laws vary across the U.S., our native asphalt is complaint in all 50 states, Connecticut and California included. (And unlike many cold mix asphalts, our compliance status doesn’t depend on long-term storage “exemptions.”) Most states set the VOC limit around 3%. Most leading asphalt have a VOC of 1-2%. But our native Anacacho limestone asphalt has a VOC of less than .00001%. (Low enough to legally be considered “VOC free”)  That’s why our native asphalt is by far and away the most environmentally friendly patching material on the market today and we have the independent test results to prove it.

What does RockAsphalt© do to ensure the consistent quality of its product?

Our quality control procedures include: production design, composition testing, on-site and lab analysis, and more. While the quality of asphalt produced at local plants often varies over time, technicians, and equipment – the consistency of our product is guaranteed. And because we tightly control every step in the production of our material, we can do things that local asphalt production plants either can’t or won’t do (like select aggregates for optimal structural interlock via McAdams Principle). This is yet another way we maximize the longevity and performance of our asphalt.

Where has RockAsphalt© been successfully used?

While our patch is specifically engineered for distressed pavement repair, it’s been used to fix tennis courts, driveways, sidewalks, and more. Sewer, water, and gas utility contractors, cable installers, and location investigators also frequently use RockAsphalt© to repair their utility cuts.

Is it normal for the material in my bag of RockAsphalt© to be dry, not sticky?

Yes that’s completely normal and here’s why: Most asphalt is a manufactured mix of distilled crude oil and rock aggregate. Basically it’s rocks coated in a tarry binder. But our native asphalt is different. Over 70 million years of heat and pressure have forced a natural bitumen binder to permeate deep inside the Anacacho limestone rocks in our asphalt. That’s why our patching material is dry-to-the-touch unlike oily manufactured alternatives: the sticky binder has seeped into the interstices of our asphalt rocks. If you apply pressure, however, our rocks secrete that bitumen and fuse together into a dense and durable surface. Otherwise our native asphalt rocks remain mostly dry and clean.

How can I learn more about the composition of RockAsphalt©?

Below are the results of lab testing done by independent researchers at Texas A&M University and the Texas Transportation Institute in a study commissioned by TXDOT and the Federal Highway Administration.

Marshall Stability (lbs) 893

Hveem Stability 35

Air Void (%) 3.4

VMA (%) 13.2

Marshall Flow (.01’’) 20

Tensile Strength Before Moisture (psi) 53

Tensile Strength After Moisture (psi) 22

Bitumen Content (%) 6.1

For more information, please visit our Case Studies page.

Is RockAsphalt© only available in 50lb bags or can it be purchased in bulk?

Our material is available in 50 lb., 100 lb., and half-ton units. Increments above a ton are available on request but pricing may differ based on order size. Please contact sales for more information.

What is the approximate density or coverage rate of RockAsphalt©?

One 50 lb. bag covers 0.6 cubic ft (compacted); 85 lbs./cubic ft.

For example, it takes one 50 lb. bag to repair a 7 ft x 1 ft x 1 inch pothole.

If you’re trying to figure out how much material you need for a project, try our Job Calculator.

What's the best way to compact a patch?

We recommend filling a standard pothole about ¾ of an inch to 1 inch above the depth of the pothole on the edges and in the middle it needs to be piled up about 1 ½ inch. From there the best way to compact it is by driving over it with a vehicle, start on one side of the repair gradual moving over to the other side. You’ll know the material is completely compacted when there are no tire tread marks on the repair.

Can I use RockAsphalt© to make a curb or speed bump?

RockAsphalt© is engineered specifically to be a distressed pavement repair material. While creative customers have successfully used our asphalt in all kinds of unique situations, we cannot fully guarantee the performance of our product outside of pavement repair and similar use cases.

How long does a bag of RockAsphalt© stay workable?

Sealed 50 lb. bags remain fresh and workable for 1 year. Our asphalt has a long shelf life because it doesn’t contain volatile chemical additives. It also naturally resists oxidation unlike most other patches.

Can RockAsphalt© patches be overlaid with hot mix asphalt?

Yes. RockAsphalt© patches can be overlaid without bleed-through, pushing, or rutting. Though for optimal results, we suggest crews wait at least 10 days before overlaying.

Can RockAsphalt© be used for concrete repairs?

Yes. Because our asphalt contains none of the acids that cold mix asphalts rely on to remain workable, RockAsphalt© works great for repairing concrete surfaces like bridge decks, parking lots, and so on. Unlike most cold mix asphalts, our product as a neutral PH and won’t cause spalling or cracking.

What methods of compaction are suitable?

Our product is “throw-and-roll.” That means using a truck wheel to compact our patch works just as well as using vibratory plate compactors, rollers, or other special compaction equipment. But those work as well if you have them on hand.

Still Have A Question?

Solve Your Pothole Problem

Read how RockAsphalt© helps municipalities manage road repairs in a more cost-efficient way

Learn More

Get A Free Bag

Let us send you a few free 50lb bags of RockAsphalt© so you can test our patch yourself.

Get A Free Bag