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This procedure for pothole repair was given to me by an Ontario highway worker.
Most potholes are bowl shaped and if new blacktop is put in the hole, moisture and frost will simply pop up the patch and break down the repair in a short period of time.
First, the pothole edges need to be undercut 60 degrees all the way around. The undercut allows the new patch to “lock” in as it is being driven on. All loose material is removed from the hole.
Next, the appropriate liquid material is used to “butter” the edges of the undercut to meld the existing blacktop with the new patch material.
Lastly, the patch is over filled and mounded with enough material to fill in the undercut and over time finish the repair level with the existing surface. Basically turning the bowl upside down and locking it in place.
The added time to undercut a pothole will be more than saved by a repair that lasts a long time instead of repeated repairs on the same pothole.