Can You Tarmac Over Concrete?

Technically, you could say that tarmac, also known as asphalt, is very practical for usage. This is because it is long-lasting and gives a polished finish when it comes to covering pavements alongside other areas that need this kind of material. In essence, the paved road materials that we refer to as tarmac are made from tar and crushed stones. However, today’s tarmac is typically constructed of bitumen, not tar, which is a leftover from the refining of petroleum.

One may wonder if it is possible to lay tarmac over concrete. Yes, it is, but there are a few steps you should keep in mind. To start with, you need to verify that the concrete is stable. If not, there’s a chance you could harm the freshly laid tarmac. This is why it is paramount to acquaint yourself with the steps and advantages of laying tarmac over concrete. 

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Steps to Lay Tarmac Over Concrete 

Step 1: Examine the Surface of Concrete

The first stage is to evaluate the current concrete surface’s condition. Examine the area for any fractures, voids, or structural problems that could compromise the fresh coating of the tarmac. Larger damage may need more substantial treatment, while small cracks and minor damage tend to be repairable. Remember, making sure the surface is sturdy and roughly level is essential to the project’s success.

Step 2: Wipe the Concrete Floor

To guarantee that the tarmac and concrete adhere to one another properly, a clean surface is necessary. Hence, you should clear the ready mix concrete surface of all loose particles, oil marks, and filth. A high-pressure washer, a brush, and an appropriate cleaner can be used for this. Before moving on to the following phase, give the surface a thorough rinse and let it thoroughly dry.

Step 3: Repair the Concrete Surface

Filling in of cracks and holes is done by an appropriate patching compound and you may smooth the patched places using a trowel. It is also important to allow the filled areas to cure as per the manufacturer’s instructions so that the tarmac will have a firm foundation. 

Step 4: Use a Tacky Coat

The bitumen or asphalt emulsion layer known as a tack coat must be applied to improve the adhesion between the concrete and the newly laid tarmac layer. By strengthening their bond and avoiding delamination, the tack coat contributes a tremendous role in the overall process. With the help of a brush or sprayer, you may evenly distribute the tack coat over the whole concrete surface and let it dry for a few minutes. 

Step 5: Take Care of Drainage Problems

To avoid water from destroying the asphalt roads, we must ensure that run-off systems are properly designed. Ensure that there is enough gradient to let water flow off the surface. Furthermore, put in place channels where there is the pooling of waters or adjust so that it has a gentle slope during runoff. 

Step 6: Lay the Tarmac

You may lay the tarmac when the tack coat has dried. Using a rake or screed, spread the heated tarmac mixture to the required thickness after pouring it onto the prepared area. Given that tarmac sets pretty rapidly, you should work quickly and effectively. The secret to getting a smooth, long-lasting surface is to make sure the layer is even.

Step 7: Make the Tarmac Compact

Appropriate compaction is essential to the tarmac surface’s lifespan. As soon as it has been laid, compact it using a large roller or compactor. For complete compaction, make many passes with the roller while giving particular consideration to the joints and edges to avoid any weak points. This process ensures a dense, even surface that helps in the removal of air pockets.

Step 8: Allow the Tarmac to Cure

The tarmac needs time to cool and firm after compaction, so avoid driving on it for at least 24 to 48 hours. To prevent indentations and guarantee a smooth finish, refrain from placing heavy objects on the surface during the curing period.

Step 9: Seal the Area 

To further preserve the tarmac surface from wear, moisture, and UV radiation, we suggest using a sealer. Why? To prolong the lifespan of the tarmac and retain its appealing look. Also, pick a premium asphalt sealant and use a brush, roller, or sprayer to apply it evenly and let the sealant dry and cure as per the given recommendations. 

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Advantages of Tarmac Over Concrete 

  • Cost-Effectiveness

Old concrete removal and disposal can be costly and labor-intensive, as it requires large machinery and substantial manpower expenditures. Nonetheless, you can save a lot of money by tarmacking over the existing concrete to avoid these costs. Plus, tarmac requires materials that are frequently less expensive than those needed for a total rebuild.

  • Time Efficiency

It can be quicker to tarmac over concrete than to remove it and start over. This can be especially helpful for projects with short timelines or in locations where it’s important to cause the least amount of disturbance possible, like driveways of homes or businesses. Because the preparation and application procedures are usually faster, the newly installed surface can be put to use sooner. 

  • Enhanced Surface Honing

With time, ready mix concrete surfaces can develop cracks, wear, and a lacklustre appearance. Tarmac can be laid over concrete to create a clean, smooth, and visually appealing finish. It can:

  • Fill in small blemishes 
  • Provide a consistent look 
  • Improve your home’s curb appeal

Additionally, its smooth surface enhances traction, which ultimately lowers the possibility of slips and falls.

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  • Sturdiness and Resistance to Weather

Tarmac is well known for being resilient to many weather conditions and for being long-lasting. Unlike concrete, which frequently cracks when the temperature changes, it can expand and shrink. Tarmac adds another layer of protection against the elements, including:

  • Rain
  • Snow
  • UV rays

Thus, the surface’s longevity can be greatly increased by this dual-layer method.

  • Maintenance and Repair

According to the leading concrete suppliers, tarmac is simpler to maintain and repair than concrete. It can be made to look better and last longer by periodically resealing them. Moreover, patching materials is a quick and easy way to fix minor damages like potholes and small cracks. Conversely, fixing concrete frequently necessitates more costly and time-consuming labour.

  • Versatility 

Tarmac has several uses outside of driveways and paths; it can be found in:

  • Parking lots
  • Roads
  • Outdoor space

Because of its adaptability, it may be used in both commercial and residential constructions. It offers a versatile option that may satisfy a variety of needs, whether you need to resurface a tiny walkway or a huge parking space. 

Bottom Line 

All in all, tarmacking over concrete is a workable solution that can provide a smooth, long-lasting surface while saving money and effort. You may have a long-lasting, well-performing, and aesthetically pleasing tarmac surface by following the right procedures and making sure everything is prepared well.

Do you want the assistance of a top concrete supplier to help you build a solid concrete foundation with tarmac over it? If yes, we are here to assist you! At Pro-Mix Concrete, we provide the best quality concrete that complies with all durability standards! If you have any queries, you may visit our socials. Follow us on our Instagram page @pro_mixconcrete to gain more insights about our services!