What a great season to be in auto repair. Potholes are a boon to that industry this time of year in Minnesota, given the mess the potholes create with the deterioration of asphalt roads, driveways, and even expansion cracks in concrete paved areas..
Did you know that the MN Department of Transportation actually has a “recipe for potholes” on its website? Yummmm…..
A recipe for potholes
The ingredients of a hard winter provide the perfect recipe for potholes. Snow, ice and rain provide ample moisture and severe cold causes pavement cracking that allows water to seep in, expand and displace paving material. Add sunlight, which creates varying temperatures that keep the damaging freeze/thaw cycle in motion. And finally, warmer spring weather accelerates the freeze/thaw cycle, causing pavement to deteriorate even more quickly.
And all along we thought it was a location error on last week’s newsflash:
Meteor Explosion Over Russia could actually have said Meteor Damaged 494. Given its current condition, it’s at least plausible.
After all, look at the full moon on any clear night. All the dark images are craters caused by meteors, asteroids and other things that hit it because it doesn’t have an atmosphere like earth does to protect it. Now, take a drive down any given paved surface next to your neighborhood. You can’t deny the similarities.
Worn paved surfaces are prone to having craters (aka: potholes) show up over time given the extreme weather conditions common in the Twin Cities. You may have to be like Danika Patrick or Mario Andretti in order to dodge the oncoming potholes on the highways and streets, yet you shouldn’t have to put yourself through that kind of elite drivers training when it comes to maneuvering your own driveway.
To avoid mixing up your own pothole recipe, keep your driveways and sidewalks clean and in good repair. Extra ice caused from dripping gutters or standing water which expands and contracts with freezing/thawing/freezing in late winter and spring will create inevitable cracks. Dips and lower areas in your driveway, sidewalk or patio, possibly caused from erosion or even a poorly done base under your paving could add some spice to MNDOT’s recipe above.
If you are part of the majority that doesn’t enjoy using hard earned dollars on car repair caused by potholes – especially around tax time – we may have a solution for you! This only applies to the section you drive your vehicle that you DO have control over….your driveway. (We take no responsibility for what the city or county does to the rest of the space you drive or park your car). On Tax Day, 4-15-13, we at Richfield Blacktop and Concrete are giving away a free driveway! Check out our facebook page to enter by March 15.