Chip Seal Program

The annual chip seal program typically begins after the 4th of July. Chip seal consists of a layer of hot asphalt oil covered with rock. Occasionally the asphalt oil will bleed through the rocks, requiring the placement of sand to absorb the bleeding oil.

Kittitas County budgets approximately $3,000,000 per year for the chip seal program. The roads are scheduled for a seven-year rotation; however, this may vary due to the condition and use of the roads. In addition to the chip seal, the roads may require crack sealing and pre-leveling for additional structure stability.

How to Proceed through a Chip Seal Placement Operation

  • When encountering a chip seal operation in a vehicle, the first thing to do is REDUCE SPEED for SAFETY.
  • Observe the orange warning signs and follow directions
  • Always pay attention to Flagger's directions for stopping or proceeding
  • When stopping, always remain in your travel lane unless otherwise instructed by Flagger
  • When directed to proceed, go slowly through workers and equipment until clear of the work zone
  • Do NOT spin tires on freshly chip sealed roads, it creates ruts that remain until the next chip seal


Fresh oil, loose gravel, large moving equipment, and workers on roadway.

Chip Seal Schedules

The initial chip seal schedule is based on pavement rating, condition and position in the chip seal cycle. After inspections are made in the spring, this initial road list will be updated and a schedule will be created to finalize the annual chip seal schedule. Final schedules will include the estimated week of chip seal for each road on the list.

Chip Seal
Distribution of oil on the roadway surface
Chip Seal
Distribution of rock after oil is applied on the roadway surface
Chip Seal
Power Brooming of loose rock is performed after compaction