Cold weather, long hauls are no problem

Dec 04, 2017

Have you ever heard of Arlington, Oregon? Perhaps not but residents of Arlington are proud of their community, located just two hours east of Portland along the Columbia River. Arlington is part of Gilliam County, which is home to the beautiful Painted Hills, considered one of Oregon’s Seven Wonders. Temperatures are perfect in the summer and hover around freezing in the winter. The city works continually with local partners to improve the livability of the community, namely by investing in infrastructure.

But building roads late into the fall can become difficult when temperatures average between 35 and 49 F. This makes it necessary for asphalt producers and contractors in the area to understand the latest technologies that can help mixes which are stiff and difficult to compact without the right chemical additive.

Granite Construction and Oregon Mainline Paving recently completed a successful project in Arlington late in the fall using Evotherm® on a project that would have otherwise been filled with challenges. Cold weather, a stiff binder and long hauls could have pushed the project into the 2018 season.

“76-28 ER is a challenging asphalt to work with in the peak of summer, so putting this material down in November caused concern for many people,” explained Bob Siffert, technical marketing management at Ingevity. “Temperatures were around 40 F in the mornings when Oregon Mainline started hauling Granite’s mix to Arlington from the asphalt plant, which was positioned well over an hour away.”

“Oregon Mainline’s crew completed some heavy highway work with Evotherm in 2016, so they were familiar with our technology and how it could help the workability of the mix,” continued Siffert. “Their crew, along with Granite’s, still expected problems paving with this material in November. The combination of winter weather, a stiff binder and a long haul are the trifecta that can cause failing densities and terrible workability.”

“We expected to have significant issues with compaction and workability with this polymer-modified binder in the cold weather,” remarked Randy High, quality control manager at Oregon Mainline. “But we ended up being very pleased with Evotherm in the mix. We had no problems with density and the crew was impressed with the workability. With a little Evotherm, we did what many thought couldn’t be done.”

Could your paving season be extended? Or are you having trouble achieving density with stiff mixtures in colder temperatures? Oregon Mainline and Granite know the value of Evotherm and you could too.