Asphalt is America’s most recycled product. It’s estimated that over 80% of the asphalt that’s removed from road projects is recycled every year. This practice saves a significant amount of money each year and helps us reduce waste without harming the environment. Curious about how asphalt recycling works? You’ve come to the right place.
What is Asphalt?
Did you know that asphalt is a natural material? The material, also known as bitumen, is found in natural lakes and deposits. However, the asphalt that you know to be used for roads, parking lots, and other paving projects is made by combining the bitumen with aggregates such as rock, sand, and stone. It’s been around since ancient times and there’s no indication that it will stop being used any time soon.
Why Should it Be Recycled?
Besides doing your part for protecting the Earth, there are many additional benefits to recycling asphalt. In fact, there are three primary areas that will benefit most: environmental, economic, and project efficiency.
Some of the environmental benefits of recycling asphalt:
- Limits construction material waste
- Helps conserve natural resources
- Reduces the amount of new oil needed in construction processes
The economic benefits of recycling asphalt:
- Taxpayers save money
- Can recycle asphalt multiple times (ensures its value)
- Contractors save money
Lastly, how recycling asphalt can improve project efficiency:
- Higher quality asphalt
- Reduced demand on aggregate
- Improved HMA mixes
- Decreased likelihood of cracking
- Decreases susceptibility to rutting
How It’s Recycled
The asphalt recycling process begins when a professional asphalt recycling company gathers large chunks of asphalt or millings, whether from a residential construction site, commercial building, or industrial facility. The millings and broken asphalt pieces are then mixed with water and additives inside a reclaimer. The mixture then goes through either a hot or cold recycling process.
Hot recycling involves tumbling the asphalt in the heat for approximately 20 minutes, while cold recycling doesn’t involve any heat. After either process, a product known as reclaimed asphalt pavement (RAP) is produced. This material can be used for various projects and recycled multiple times.
Your Best Maryland Resource for Asphalt Recycling
The best way to recycle your unused or old asphalt in Maryland is to hire LCI Recycling. We know how to properly recycle asphalt and ensure that it’s done safely and efficiently. This doesn’t have to be an additional task you need to worry about during a construction project. Simply call or contact us and we’ll take it from there.