Effect of Performance Warranties on Cost and Quality of Asphalt Pavements

Colorado began experimenting with performance warranties on asphalt pavements in 1998. The warranty specification on the first projects was developed with the help of the asphalt paving industry and consisted of a 3-year period in which the contractor was responsible for several forms of pavement distress. In exchange for this risk, the contractor was allowed to choose materials and methods for constructing the pavements. A study documented the cost–benefit relationship for these projects during the warranty period and beyond and compared the performance of these projects with comparable nonwarranty pavements. Cost comparisons include the initial hot-mix asphalt, maintenance, pavement evaluation team, weigh-in-motion station, and construction engineering. An analysis was also conducted on the competition, performance, and use of experimental features. The results of this analysis showed no significant difference in competition or performance of the warranty projects when compared with the control projects, and the difference in cost of the warranty projects when compared with the nonwarranty projects was determined to be negligible. The greatest difference in cost identified between the warranty and nonwarranty projects was for weigh-in-motion station installation and maintenance. These stations were installed to verify traffic levels during the warranty period on the first projects. This cost was approximately 3% of the overall project cost. Many lessons were learned on these projects, and recommendations were made to improve the current specification and increase the warranty periods to 5 and 10 years.


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  • Accession Number: 01045599
  • Record Type: Publication
  • ISBN: 9780309113045
  • Files: PRP, TRIS, TRB, ATRI
  • Created Date: Feb 8 2007 6:24PM