How to Use Asphalt Calculator
Enter the thickness in Inches
Enter the width and length in Feet
Then Press Calculate .
How to calculate how much Asphalt you need
- First, measure the length and width in feet of the area and then measure the depth in inches.
- Let's say our driveway is 12 feet long, 8 feet in width and 4 inches deep.
- We convert our depth into feet: 4/12 = 0.33
- Now we multiply them by each other :12 X 8 X 0.33 = 31.68, this is our volume (cubic feet)
- Now we need to multiply the volume of the area by the density of the asphalt(usually 145 or 150 pounds per cubic foot): 150 X 31.68 = 4,752 pounds
- To convert to tons we divide 4,752 by 2000: 4752/2000 = 2.376 tons of asphalt are needed for the driveway.
Asphalt, referenced as bitumen interchangeably, is a black viscous material that is most commonly used for road surfacing and roofing. A mixture of aggregates (stone, gravel and sand) and asphalt creates asphalt pavement, as seen for its primary use in road construction. Outside of paving asphalts and roofing tiles, bitumen is also extracted and refined as a synthetic crude oil, to be produced in a range of petroleum products. Found as natural deposits or refined, various forms of bitumen can be colloquially termed as “tar” or “pitch”.
Being the most recycled and versatile pavement material, it is engineered to withstand freezing or thawing, unaffected by salt in the winter and designed to be flexible and “give” during settlements or freeze heaves.
There are 5 main types of asphalt, with 3 main asphalt grades.
Grades of Asphalt
- 1-2 : Base
- 1-5 : Top
- 1-4 : Commercial Top Grade
For residential, businesses and commercial locations, 1-5 is most commonly applied, with the base grade (1-2) used for stabilization. Larger scale commercial development (parking lots, public roads etc) requiring strength and reliability require 1-4 to meet residential codes.
Types of Asphalt
Mastic Asphalt consists of graded limestone aggregates, bound with asphalt cement; it is one of the oldest construction products in use. Reputable for its durability, it is often used in residential and commercial roofing for its waterproofing abilities. There are two types of mastic asphalt: British Standard and Polymer Modified.
British Standard is the traditional material most used for smaller domestic projects in comparison to the more modern Polymer Modified Mastic Asphalt (PMA). Developed in the last 20 years, PMA is now the standard for local authorities and larger clients given the larger flexibility in withstanding extreme heat or cold, and allows suppliers to provide 20-year guarantees.
In addition to its duration, flexibility and long life span, key qualities of mastic asphalt help in retaining its popularity. Mastic asphalt is laid very quickly given its molten application, it deals well with difficult upstands and detailing that allows it to have a seamless finish.
Hot Mix Asphalt
Hot Mix Asphalt (HMA) is heated aggregate made up of 95% stone, sand or gravel bound together by asphalt cement. Produced in high temperatures between 250F – 325 F, HMA can cool quickly and lose up to 5F – 25F in transportation. Used commonly for main roads, highways and airports, it can handle high volumes of traffic while retaining its longevity and smoothness which supersedes its concrete counterpart.
Several different factors are to be considered during the laying of a paving or patch job. To achieve the compaction and smoothness of a successfully newly paved road, the ambient (air) temperatures, base (aggregate and/or existing asphalt) and the HMA temperatures are critical to monitor.
The normal requirement for the ambient and base temperature is 50F and rising. Taking into account the high and low temperatures of the day and during working hours will affect the success of a paving project. Wind velocity is another factor that can determine the cooling time of your HMA. Should your asphalt mix cool too quickly during lay down, it will result in an earlier onset of the unravelling process, lessening its lifespan and leaving a poor, rocky, and uneven surface.
Minimum HMA temperatures prior to initial or breakdown rolling is 220F; anything less than runs the risk of failure as the HMA has set and the required compaction cannot be achieved.
Warm Mix Asphalt
Warm Mix Asphalt (WMA) poses as a cost and energy efficient alternative to HMA. Produced at temperatures 30F – 120F lower than HMA, fuel consumption is reduced by 20 percent. Technology lessens the viscosity of the asphalt binder, allowing aggregates to mix at lower temperatures. This extends the paving season, with a lesser difference in the ambient temperature and WMA temperature; the cooling period during lay down expedites the labor work and results in less time and money spent on a project. Transportation costs are also curbed where more asphalt mix can be hauled for longer distances.
Being versatile, WMA can be used in a range of pavement thickness, acting as a compaction tool to achieve the mandated density required for public roads.
Lower emissions also improve working conditions with less inhalation of smoke and dust. WMA can be used on days when air quality would otherwise be non-attainment days.
Recognized as a green paving option for site planners and public-works departments, porous asphalt acts as an agent in aiding storm water management, replenishing water tables and aquifers, improve water quality by removing pollutants from run off and promote soil infiltration.
In use since the mid 1970’s, porous asphalt directs excess storm water to underlying, open graded stone beds, infiltrating into the surrounding soil as the water runs through. Built to a depth of 18 – 36 inches, the design of the stone bed is made so water levels never rise to the asphalt.
Cost advantages can be calculated in comparison to standard storm-water management systems or in land value for areas to be used as a detention basin or other storm-water management facility. The reduced demands on storm sewer systems also result in lower fees imposed by local governments.
Given the same durability and flexibility in relation to other asphalt mixes, porous asphalts can often be a cost effective and attractive option with a life span of 20 or more years.
Thin Asphalt Overlay
Thinlays are a popular approach to pavement preservation, because they help extend the life cycle of an existing pavement, reduce noise pollution, improve road quality and maintain surface geometrics. Produced with WMA and recycled materials, thin overlay can help agencies manage pavement condition and remain cost friendly.
Perpetual pavement is a concept of multi-layer paving design used to describe a long lasting design, construction and maintenance for HMA pavements.
Constructed since the 1960’s, perpetual pavements have been proven to be very successful in providing long service lives under heavy traffic. A basic perpetual pavement structural concept starts with a HMA base layer than can either be made thick enough to render tensile stress at the base layer insignificant or with the addition of asphalt content create an extra-flexible HMA layer.
An intermediate layer made to endure traffic load can be afforded using stone on stone contact with coarse aggregate, known also as Stone Matrix Asphalt (SMA). The stone skeleton presence is credited for its high rutting resistance durability.
The wearing layer atop is usually the highest grade material to maximize load bearing ability, with characteristics such as smoothness, noise control, rutting resistance and drainage, preventing an excess of surface water to access the intermediate and base layer. A properly designed and funded preservation project will be able to identify surface distress during its wearing capacity and rehabilitate the wearing layer as needed.
Addressing the modern day noise pollution, the most effective way is to pave major public roads and highways with asphalt to reduce noise complaints from residential homes and business practices.
There are four quiet pavement options:
- Fine-graded surfaces
- Open-graded friction courses (OGFC)
- Rubberized Asphalt (RAC)
- Stone-Matrix Asphalt (SMA)
Fine-graded surfaces reduce road noise by altering the frequency of expelled air. Composed mostly of fine grained materials, it is one of the more conventional asphalt mixes.
Open-graded friction courses are a porous mix, allowing air and water to escape through different voids.
Rubberized asphalt consists of regular asphalt cement mixed with crumb rubber from recycled tires. It allows the pavement more flexibility as tires pass over to expel the air at a lower temperature, and thus reduce traffic noise.
Stone matrix asphalt mainly uses coarse aggregates to create a stone skeleton, bound together by the appropriate heat grade binder. Relying on a higher aggregate resistance to rutting in relevance to asphalt binder under load, the stone on stone contact has been proven to offset its initial cost by its durability and effectiveness in noise reduction.