Research Reports

Cost/Benefit Analysis of the Effectiveness of Crack Sealing Techniques

Principal Investigator:

Manik Barman, Jared Munch, Uma M Arepalli

June 2019

Report no. MnDOT 2019-26

Projects: Cost/Benefit Analysis of the Effectiveness of Crack Sealing Techniques

Topics: Pavement design for cold climates

Crack sealing is an important preventive treatment in the pavement preservation program. To achieve a cost-effective crack seal, it is important to select a proper crack sealing method. While Minnesota usually seals cracks in asphalt pavements, there is no clear consensus on the most appropriate crack sealing method for a specific job. This study focused on developing a guideline so that a cost-effective crack sealing method could be chosen based on pavement type, functional condition, pavement age, and traffic volume etc. This study includes a literature review, online survey, field performance data collection and analysis, and development of a guideline. The effectiveness of the crack seals was determined using a benefit-cost analysis. Two decision trees were developed for choosing the most appropriate crack sealing method. The first, which can be used in MnDOT's pavement management system, needs information such as crack severity, pavement type (new vs overlay), pavement analysis period and design life, traffic level, and crack seal occurrence number. The second decision tree, which is a simplified version of the first and can be used by the preventive maintenance crews and requires less information: crack severity, traffic level, and crack sealing occurrence number.

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