As a road construction contractor, one of the most important equipment in your possession will be your asphalt carrying trailers. Your asphalt trailers, like any other asphalt paving equipment, will accumulate a tacky layer of asphalt on its bed and adjacent surfaces. Every time the trailer is used to haul asphalt, the layer of asphalt will grow in thickness, allowing you to transport lesser volume of usable asphalt mixture to construction sites. While working on large projects, this might lead to a reduction in productivity and might increase the number of trips required to haul the requisite amount of asphalt. To prevent excessive asphalt build-up on your trailers, you’ll need to clean them. Below you will find how you can clean your asphalt trailers and maintain them in optimal operational condition:
Scrape off Regularly
Scraping off asphalt every time you unload your trailer is a simple way to prevent an undesirable build-up of drying asphalt in your asphalt trailer. Although simple, this process is not easy as it takes manual effort to clean asphalt particles that have adhered to trailer surfaces. As soon as the trailer unloads a pile of asphalt, use a scraper to clean off as much residual asphalt as possible. Doing this regularly will ensure the carrying capacity of the trailer does not drop considerably. A delay in scraping the asphalt off will make it harder to clean as time passes, requiring more expensive methods of cleaning.
Use Diesel Fuel
As an asphalt paver, you will know that asphalt surfaces disintegrate under the action of petroleum products such as oils and diesel. Using diesel fuel is one of the most commonly used methods of cleaning asphalt trailers. Spraying diesel fuel over the consolidated asphalt dissolves it, making it easier to wash off. However, there is a caveat to using diesel fuel. Using diesel fuel is not environment-friendly, and it is expensive when used to clean asphalt frequently. Thus, you should prefer alternative agents such as ones mentioned below to achieve the same results as diesel fuel.
Use Asphalt Removal Products
A number of commercial asphalt removing products are available in the market and are being increasingly used by paving equipment owners. These products are more effective than diesel in asphalt removal and are environment-friendly as they are biodegradable compounds compared to certain petroleum-based solvents. The procedure to use these agents usually differs as per the brands, so be sure to read the instructions provided with the products. Generally, these agents are applied onto the asphalt on the trailer and rinsed with pressurized water. You can inquire with your local heavy equipment dealer to know more about asphalt equipment cleaning agents.
To prevent the accumulation and drying of asphalt on your trailer surfaces without much effort on your part, you can use release agents. Release agents are sprayed or applied onto the surfaces of the asphalt trailer before loading to prevent the asphalt from sticking to the surface. This saves a lot of time and manual effort. Certain release agents can be applied once between multiple reloads, instead of before every reload. Prevention of asphalt build up on trailers should be a part of your regular preventive maintenance routine for heavy equipment. This is because the trailer’s carrying capacity is affected. If your trailer is too damaged and you need a replacement, you can contact a reliable heavy equipment dealer who can provide you with a wide range of options.