Akron-based Perrin Asphalt Co. is a family-owned asphalt and concrete paving firm that has been in business for more than 50 years. The firm always has viewed quality as one of the key factors that sets them apart from other paving companies, so they were concerned when they noticed typical parking lot repaving projects tending to leave large dips around catch basins. “After a paving lift, catch basins tended to end up below grade and that was a quality issue for us,” explained President Chuck Perrin. “Edges would be exposed and degraded more quickly. So, we started looking for a better way.”
That better way turned out to be catch basin risers from American Highway Products. They fit existing utility rims securely, providing a new seat for the original grate that leaves the grate exactly on grade—no dips or potholes, and no exposed asphalt or concrete that will crumble quickly. They are a fast, convenient way to adjust utility grates, saving $200 to $400 in labor and material costs, compared to traditional methods. Because they install in 10 minutes or less, lane closure times also are potentially reduced.
Also, they are sturdy. “We’ve been installing at least a hundred annually for at least 15 years,” Perrin said. “And I’ve never seen one fail, not even from rust.” Perrin added, “Usually, customers don’t even know we install these risers. It’s something we do on our own so that our paving projects look better and last longer.”
Manhole Risers Too
Perrin liked the results so much that the company immediately decided to try out another utility riser solution from American Highway Products: Pivoted Turnbuckle Manhole Riser. This is an adjustable steel riser; the pivoted turnbuckle is set into the flexible rim and enables onsite adjustment. This makes manhole grade adjustment a fast, convenient process. “Being able to tighten the rims makes a big difference. I like how they hold on to the original unit,” Perrin explained. “Some of the cast iron risers will just sit loosely on the rim’s bottom ledge and flop around.” In Perrin Asphalt’s workflow, a two-man crew works just ahead of the paver and sets all the risers. “The whole process takes about 10 minutes,” Perrin said.
And they are cost-effective. “We still raise manholes with grade rings, because some cities insist on it,” Perrin explained. “We can only do about four a day when we do it that way, and the costs work out to about $500 more per riser. I don’t think cities need to spend that money. Like the catch basin risers, I’ve never seen one of the manhole risers fail.”
Perrin said. “And I just love their service. If I need larger amounts, or an unusual size, American Highway Products is usually able to deliver them within a couple days.” And in most years, the company actually installs far more AHP risers than they purchase. Akron, for example, supplies the adjustable risers for contractors to install, as many as 300 for a single project.