What to Know About Winer Asphalt

Although summers in Utah can seem like one endless road construction project after another throughout the state, winter is also a good time for asphalt. If you’re faced with some winter asphalt projects, Asphalt Materials has over 40 years of experience providing materials and services for asphalt projects big and small.

An Ideal Winter Material

Asphalt is a versatile construction material that has a number of advantages, especially in winter weather conditions. In fact, asphalt is often the preferred choice for winter construction projects because it can be laid down at lower temperatures than other materials, such as concrete, and it dries quickly. Asphalt is also less likely to be damaged by freezing and thawing cycles, which we experience repeatedly throughout Fall, Winter, and Spring in Utah.

What is Winter Asphalt?

In case you need a refresher, winter asphalt is a cold-mix version of asphalt. Regular asphalt requires temperatures above 55 degrees, whereas winter asphalt can be used even when it’s freezing outside. Cold mix asphalt takes a little longer to cure than hot asphalt, and it should only be used for small patching projects in low-traffic areas. 

Types of Winter Asphalt

Two common types of winter-rated asphalt are MC Cold Mix and Cold Mix UPM.


This is a slow-curing, temporary cold mix patching material. It performs well as a repair or restoration material, as well as a base material for roadways. 


This is a permanent cold mix patching and repair material. UPM is state-approved and is used by the Utah Department of Transportation (UDOT) for road repairs. It doesn’t require any priming and can fill wet or dry holes. You can also get this material spring- and summer-rated.

Using Cold Mix Asphalt for Patching

It’s almost as easy as 1-2-3 to use cold mix asphalt for patching. It can be used on existing asphalt or even concrete. Here’s a list of supplies you’ll need if you want to DIY a cold mix asphalt project, and a look at how the process works.


Coarse sand or gravel mix

You’ll use this to fill the pothole before topping it off with the cold mix asphalt.

Concrete saw

If you’d like to square off the area you’re patching, you can use a concrete saw to clean up the edges, much like you would an area of drywall that needs patching.

Cold Asphalt 

You may not need much for your DIY patching project, as one 50-pound bag can patch a four-foot square hole that’s one inch deep.


You can use vibrating plates, a lawn roller, or plywood to tamp down the asphalt once you’ve filled the hole.

Top coat

As an optional step, you can paint an asphalt seal coat on your patch, or dust the patch with sand or cement powder to reduce tackiness. If doing a sealant, you’ll also want a brush or roller.


  1. Prepare the hole by removing any large chunks of debris. You can use a leaf blower to clear lightweight obstructions.
  2. Fill up to 3 inches at a time, compacting between fills if depth exceeds 3 inches. Before finishing, ensure the fill is 25% higher than the road’s surface before final compaction.
  3. Once the hole is slightly overfilled, use a hand tamper, vehicle tires, plate compactors, or a roller. Afterward, dust the filled area with sand or cement powder to expedite the setting time.

If the area won’t be open to pedestrian or vehicle traffic right away, you can skip the sand or cement powder step and allow it to cure at its own pace.

Pros of Winter Asphalt

  • Can be used in cold weather conditions
  • Sets up quickly enough that traffic can resume almost immediately
  • Less likely to crack or crumble in winter weather
  • Good for small projects
  • Can safely be stored for future use
  • Mixes can be made with recycled asphalt pavement

At Asphalt Materials, we choose premium products so no matter which type of winter patching you’re performing, you can do it right the first time. We know quality is important in order for asphalt to withstand the extreme temperature fluctuations we get here in Utah.