The sealing and resealing of joints and cracks in PCC, HMA, and composite pavements is assumed to be an important component of pavement maintenance. Recently this practice has been challenged by research indicating that sealing may not be cost-effective. The Indiana Department of Transportation currently spends approximately four million dollars annually to perform joint/crack sealing. The primary objective of the research presented in this report is to investigate the costeffectiveness of joint/crack sealing in relation to pavement performance. The results of a mail survey showed that most states, including Indiana, do not have quantitative justification for sealing policies, nor do they know the cost-effectiveness of the operations. Based on the experimental design for this research, nineteen test sites were selected in Indiana, each site having one sealed section and one unsealed section. Collected data including falling weight deflectometer measurements, pavement roughness, visual condition surveys, and core samples were used to evaluate the pavement performance between sealed and unsealed sections. A three-dimensional finite element pavement model was developed to evaluate the test location effect on the load transfer measurements. The temperature effect was evaluated by statistical analyses and a temperature correction factor for deflections on asphalt pavement is provided. A statistical model was developed to compare the pavement performance between sealed and unsealed sections for three pavement types, PCC, HMA and composite. The results indicated that there appears to be no significant differences between the performance of sealed and unsealed sections regardless of pavement type, drainage condition and road classification.

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concrete, asphalt, pavement, joint, crack, sealing, cost-effectiveness, FWD, temperature gradient, SPR-2334

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Performing Organization

Joint Transportation Research Program

Publisher Place

West Lafayette, IN

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