News and Press Releases Tuesday, May 25, 2021

Why Does ACHD Chip Seal?

Each year, the Ada County Highway District runs an operation on local roads called "Chip Sealing". Residents receive notification of the operation by mail, reminders via social media, and will notice the crews and equipment in their neighborhood, but we wanted to share a bit more about the "why" behind the process.

Once a road is constructed, the oil in it starts to oxidize and when combined with weather, weight and traffic the road naturally begins to break down. This leads to noticeable cracks and deterioration of the roads we use to get to work, entertainment and our homes across Ada County.

To help minimize these impacts, a chip seal is applied to seal and protect the surface. Chip seal is a very inexpensive and efficient way to prolong the life cycle of our local roads. The process of chip sealing is the preferred method for saving the taxpayers money and protecting our roads. In fact, compared to alternatives, chip sealing costs approximately $1.98 per a square yard compared to roughly $60 per a square yard for reconstruction.

Roads in Ada County are chip sealed often and for good reason, the best analogy our Pavement Management Engineer gives is "do you want to put sunscreen on before you go outside or after you have been out for several hours?" Chip seal is like sunscreen in the way it protects the road and makes it last significantly longer.

Read more information about chip sealing in Ada County. In the coming weeks we will cover the how, when and where as we keep you informed about this important maintenance operation.



Shandy Lam
Deputy Director of Communications

Rachel Bjornestad
Public Information Officer

Christy Foltz-Ahlrichs
Sr. Communications Specialist

Emma Bowers
Digital Media Coordinator

ACHD Main Line 208-387-6100
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