By Kristina Brahney | April 19, 2021

Asphalt Prices Rising

As a facility or property manager you may have noticed an increase in the cost to pave your asphalt parking lot cost this season.

According to the Asphalt Price Index (API), the cost of asphalt cement has been steadily on the rise for the past few years. For example, in April 2016 the average cost per ton of liquid asphalt was $299.00. In April 2021, the average cost per ton of liquid asphalt is now $460.00.

Attached is a link to the State of NJ historical asphalt pricing: Asphalt Cement and Fuel Price Index

What Does This Increase Mean To You?

This cost increase ultimately means a significant rise in the average price per square foot of hot mix asphalt for driveways and parking lots.

As a New Jersey paving contractor, when costing a job, the biggest cost of every job is the material cost.  The higher the cost of material, the higher the cost of the job.

Why Is The Cost of Asphalt Rising?

The rising cost of asphalt has to do with the fact that liquid asphalt is refined from oil. As the cost of oil rises, the cost of the raw materials to refine it rise also.

To make matters worse, the current administration is calling for a 20% reduction in fossil fuels. This actions restricts the supply of oil and causes less supply. 

What does this mean to you? This means, you guessed it, with a restricted supply...less asphalt cement can be made.

Our suppliers have also notified us that they see no decrease in the future with the cost of asphalt cement. They also believe believe that there is the potential for an asphalt shortage during the  summer months.

How To Combat The Rising Costs of Asphalt?

Even though, the costs of paving are high, it doesn't mean there aren't ways to protect your current parking lot from an expensive overlay project. Below are some of the options to help you keep control of the rising costs of pavement maintenance.

Schedule Your Paving Projects Right Away

If your parking lot is currently budgeted for asphalt paving this year, the time to do it is now. The longer you wait the more expensive it will become. The price of asphalt raises at the beginning of every month.  The longer you wait, the more expensive it will become. 

Preventative Maintenance Planning

Preventative maintenance on your commercial parking lots is ultimately the best long term fix in combating rising asphalt prices. It is important to note that your parking lot isn't going to fix itself. Every year that you don't maintain your parking lot, is one year less of use you will be able to get out it. The longer you wait to repair those potholes and cracks, the more expensive year over year those repairs will become.


Sealcoating, Seal coating, or pavement sealing is an essential part of any asphalt repair and maintenance plan. Pavement Sealcoating, is the process of applying a protective coating to asphalt-based pavements to provide a layer of protection from the elements: water, oils, and U.V. damage.

Commercial property owners and managers can agree that pavement sealcoating is an effective maintenance service to their properties.

Crack Sealing

Parking lot crack repair is the single most cost-effective ways to extend the life of your pavement surface. An effective pavement management plan includes annual hot-rubberized crack sealing before winter.

It is important to begin a crack sealing program at the first sign of developing cracks in your parking lot. Hot-Rubberized sealant can be applied to your pavement all year long.

Crack sealing, when used as an annual preventive maintenance program, will add value to your parking lot and save property owners money in the long run.

5 Reasons Why Crack Sealing is Vital to Any Pavement Maintenance Plan:

1) Waterproofing The Cracks: Crack sealing help prevent water from infiltrating down to the sub-base of your parking lot. Water can cause your parking lot to unravel from the bottom up, and all the way out,

2) Prevent Potholes: Cracks in your parking lot will eventually weaken the pavement, making asphalt potholes more likely. This is because asphalt expands and contracts in fluctuating temperatures.

3) Safety: If a customer damages their vehicle or suffers personal injury due to large potholes and cracks in your parking lot, you will be legally responsible.

4) Delay The Overlay: Making small repairs to your parking lot is less expensive than having to repave it.

5) Extends The Life Of Your Asphalt Pavement: Studies have proven that when crack sealing is completed, as part of a complete preventative maintenance plan, it will extend the life if your parking lot 10-15 years.

Get Your Potholes Fixed ASAP

Potholes are essentially just holes in your parking lot. They are caused by the expansion and contraction of ground water after the water has entered into the ground under your existing asphalt parking lot. 

The New Jersey market is notorious for wicked and crazy winters, damp and crazy springs, hot and humid summers and beautiful, yet wet falls.

All of theses conditions go together and make pretty unstable conditions for your asphalt parking lot.

Potholes can develop any time of year. But need to be taken care of quickly. If they are not taken care of and left open, they create an opening for more water to get underneath of your pavement and could cause your entire parking lot to deteriorate.

Keep Your Catch Basins In Working Order

Catch basins begin to deteriorate for a variety of reasons. Sometimes, they are installed incorrectly when the asphalt parking lot is first built.  Most often, water and freeze thaw are the culprits. 

If your catch basin is not working properly this will negatively affect your parking lot. It can cause a variety of problems including standing water/ice (depending on the season), as well as cracks and potholes in the areas around the drain itself.

If your parking lot has an asphalt surface that is in good condition, it is up utmost importance to keep it that way. It will save you a large amount of money in the long run.

If your parking lot has an asphalt surface that is not in the best shape, now is the time to call and get an evaluation of your parking lot to find out the most cone-effective way to maintain it. Is Here To Help is a local and regional New Jersey based paving company. We specialize in commercial asphalt and concrete parking lots. For more information or to request an estimate please visit:


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