While examining the pavement of your business's parking lot, you may have noticed several areas where there is extensive surface cracking. Due to the intersecting pattern of these cracks and the rough texture they create on asphalt's surface, they are referred to as alligator cracks.

Although alligator cracks appear to be only superficial, they are often a sign of extensive damage below the surface. If you see these cracks, you may have a couple of questions about how they are created and what needs to be done about them.

1. Why Have Alligator Cracks Started Appearing?

The first question you may have about the alligator cracks you have found on the surface of your business's asphalt parking lot has to do with where they came from. Often created by a combination of factors, alligator cracks form when the pavement is weakened by erosion and water infiltration, which creates the initial cracks.

After these initial cracks are formed, the weight from vehicles driving over them will cause them to grow and split until they form their characteristic pattern. Since water can easily flow into the cracks and cause deterioration of the substrate underneath the pavement, if you do not have them repaired, the asphalt will crumble and break off to form large potholes.

2. Are Alligator Cracks Something That Can Be Fixed By Yourself?

Another question you may have about the alligator cracks in the pavement has to do with what you can do about them. Since you have found self-patch kits, you may be wondering if fixing the cracks can be done by you or your maintenance crew.

While these kits can fill in the cracks, they will do very little to solve the issues leading to their formation, and they will not do anything to repair the unseen damage done to the substrate. You will need to have a professional service fix the alligator cracks and any other damage associated with them.

When alligator cracks start appearing on the surface of your business's parking lot, there is most likely unseen damage underneath the pavement that will worsen if something is not done to fix it. While you could fill in the cracks yourself, doing so will not fix the underlying cause, which can lead to further damage and potholes. Before this happens, contact a professional asphalt paving service to schedule an appointment to have them assess the alligator cracks and their associated damage so they can devise a plan to repair them.

For more information on professional paving, contact a professional near you.