How to Soften Cold Lay Tarmac
When it comes to laying tarmac, it is important to ensure that the material is properly softened before use. This is especially crucial when dealing with cold lay tarmac, as it tends to harden and become difficult to work with during colder temperatures. In this article, we will discuss some effective methods to soften cold lay tarmac, allowing for easier application and a smooth finish.
1. Utilize a Heater
One effective way to soften cold lay tarmac is by using a heater. There are various types of heaters available for this purpose, including gas-powered and electric options. These heaters emit heat that helps to warm up the tarmac, making it easier to work with. Before using a heater, make sure to read the manufacturer’s instructions carefully and follow all safety precautions to avoid any accidents.
To use a heater, place it near the tarmac and direct the heat towards the material. Move the heater around the surface evenly to ensure that the heat reaches all areas. Keep a safe distance from the tarmac to prevent overheating or burning. It is essential to warm the tarmac gradually, as sudden exposure to extreme heat may cause damage or uneven softening.
2. Cover the Tarmac
Covering the cold lay tarmac is another efficient method to soften it. By covering the material, you create a barrier that helps retain heat and raise the temperature, allowing the tarmac to soften naturally. It is advisable to use a thick tarpaulin or plastic sheet to cover the tarmac completely.
Before covering, ensure that there are no air gaps or areas left exposed. You can secure the cover with weights or stakes to prevent it from moving or being blown away by the wind. Leave the tarmac covered for a sufficient period, ideally overnight or for a few hours, depending on the temperature and thickness of the tarmac layer. This method works by trapping the heat and gradually warming up the tarmac.
3. Consider Hot Water Bath
If you are facing difficulties with cold lay tarmac that is particularly rigid, you may opt for a hot water bath. This method involves immersing the tarmac in hot water to soften it before use. However, it is essential to be cautious while handling hot water to avoid burns or scalds.
To proceed with a hot water bath, fill a container large enough to accommodate the tarmac with hot water. The water should be hot but not boiling to prevent any damage to the tarmac. Gently place the tarmac into the container and leave it submerged for a sufficient duration, typically around 30 minutes to an hour, depending on the thickness of the tarmac layer.
After the softening process, remove the tarmac carefully from the hot water bath, ensuring there is no excess water attached. Let the tarmac sit for a short while to cool slightly before commencing the laying process. This method should help soften the tarmac to a more pliable and workable state.
4. Mix in a Softening Agent
Using a softening agent is another viable solution for softening cold lay tarmac. These agents are specially formulated to reduce the rigidity of tarmac and make it more flexible, thereby enhancing its workability. Softening agents are available in liquid form and can be easily mixed with the tarmac before application.
Prior to using a softening agent, read the manufacturer’s instructions for the recommended quantity and method of application. Carefully measure the required amount and mix it thoroughly with the tarmac material. Ensure uniform distribution of the softening agent within the mixture. Allow the tarmac to rest for a short while after mixing to allow the agent to take effect and soften the material.
In conclusion, softening cold lay tarmac is crucial for a smooth and successful application. Utilizing a heater, covering the tarmac, using a hot water bath, or incorporating a softening agent are effective methods to achieve the desired pliability and flexibility. Ensure to follow safety instructions and consider the specific requirements of your project while employing these techniques. By softening the tarmac adequately, you will be able to work with greater ease and achieve a high-quality finish.