Surface Dressing Programme 2022

What is Surface Dressing?

Surface dressing is a process that involves spraying bitumen binder on to a dry road surface. We then spread stone chippings and roll the surface to help embed the chippings. Due to the nature of this process, the road cannot be swept for 24 hours after it has been laid, during this time, we rely on the action of the traffic to embed the chippings into the road surface. There will be loose chippings for around a week after the surface has been laid.

Following works, advisory 20mph speed limits are put in place. This is to protect road users from loose chippings.

Why do we use Surface Dressing?

Surface dressing seals and waterproofs the road and improves the skid resistance, extending the life of the road by up to 10 years.

It’s also a relatively quick process. We can complete 1km of road in around 2 hours, which minimises delays to traffic. Surface dressing is a traditional and cheaper method of maintaining the road. It can be seven to eight times cheaper than alternative methods. It also seals and provides a uniform surface on roads that have been patched.

When will the road be swept after the work?

We will usually sweep the road after 24 hours, 3 days and again one week after the new surface has been laid.

We may vary the frequency of the first sweep at some sites because of the potential heat. We would not recommend sweeping too early under such conditions.

When can road markings be replaced?

We will replace the road markings after the final road sweep. This can be one to three weeks after the works. If parked cars are in the way then there may be further delays whilst we remove them to put the road markings back. We will also replace any cats-eyes at this time. 

The works are weather dependant.

If it rains or is either too hot (temperatures over around 40°C) or too cold (temperatures below around 10°C) then we will not be able to carry out the work. We will reschedule these and let you know via the signs on site as to when the works will happen.