THE PROS AND CONS OF DIFFERENT DRIVEWAYS

Driveways

So, you are looking to revamp your driveway or build one completely from scratch, read on. In this article, we will be talking about the different materials you can use for your driveway, we will discuss their pros and cons and also decide which one is best for you. Let’s get into it.

There are a few factors to consider when choosing which material to use for your driveway. For the most part, the driveway material you end up going with will depend on your budget, the look you want to achieve, weather conditions, and the level of maintenance you are willing to put up with.

Factors to consider when choosing a driveway

Upfront Cost

If money is no object, then aesthetics can be the determining factor of which material you use. Using a material that blends excellently with the look of your property goes a long way in upping the value of your property.

A good rule to go by is this, the more exclusive the material is, the higher the cost of using it for your driveway. Going for the cheapest possible has its appeal but it also has its drawbacks as well.

Required Maintenance

Different materials require different levels of maintenance in order to last as they ought to. If you have the time and don’t mind having to carry out maintenance regularly, then you can go for materials that require more maintenance. In the same vein, you can go for low maintenance options if you don’t have the time to carry out regular maintenance or would rather not be bothered.

Weather Conditions

The different driveway surfacing materials respond differently to adverse weather conditions. The shifts in temperature from one extreme to the other, rain, snow, ice will affect the longevity of your driveway. All you have to do is go for an option that can withstand the prevailing weather conditions in your locale.

Concrete

Concrete is definitely the most popular choice for driveways, and with good reason. It has a lot of advantages with few disadvantages. It produces a clean look and is very customizable, making it a great option for many homeowners. Compared to the other materials, concrete is cost-effective.

Pros

  • It requires little or no maintenance.
  • Concrete driveways are very durable and can last up to 20 years if done right.
  • Concrete driveways are very customizable; you get color, texture, and pattern options.
  • Compared to other materials, concrete doesn’t get too hot in the summer. During the winter, snow comes off easily (although it doesn’t handle ice very well).

Cons

  • Concrete driveways are prone to cracking over time. Although it can be avoided if they are laid properly.
  • Fixing concrete driveways usually involves taking it all apart.
  • Concrete stains easily and is hard to clean.

Asphalt

Asphalt is more cost-efficient than concrete. Although it does require more maintenance, it is very flexible and behaves better in harsh weather conditions.

Pros

  • Compared to concrete, asphalt is more flexible and less like to crack. Even when it cracks, the damage is going to be mild.
  • It is one of the cheapest options for driveway surfacing.
  • More resistant to winter weather (salt and ice).
  • Asphalt is pretty much ready to use after installation.
  • Repairing asphalt is simple and easy enough to be done by the homeowners.

Cons

  • Limited customization options (asphalt is always smooth and black).
  • Asphalt can get pretty hot in the summer; it can even become soft and sticky.
  • Compared to concrete, asphalt lasts for a shorter period and requires more maintenance (resealing).

Tarmac

Tarmac is very similar to asphalt but with a few differences. While tarmac is a mixture of crushed stones and tar, asphalt is a mixture of crushed stones and bitumen which makes it have a smoother finish.

Pros

  • Tarmac is very durable and that is why it is the choice when the driveway is going to be home to heavy or a lot of vehicles.
  • Just like asphalt, tarmac is very weather resistant and can withstand extreme weather conditions.
  • Tarmac driveways are very easy to install.

Cons

  • Although tarmac is very resistant to heat, it is not so good with ultraviolet light. UV light can cause tarmac degradation.
  • Being oil-based, tarmac can be damaged by petrol, diesel, or other automotive oils.

Paving

Pavers are stones that can be slot together like tiles. When it comes to paved driveways you can choose from brick, concrete, or even cobblestone pavers.

Pros

  • Unlike other materials that require some time to ‘cure’ before they can be used, paved driveways do not require any curing time. They are ready immediately after they are installed.
  • Paved driveways have a great deal of curb appeal, as they are very customizable and can make your property stand out.
  • Paved driveways are permeable. They prevent water runoff.

Cons

  • Installing a paved driveway can be quite expensive.
  • Brick paved driveways can be slippery when wet.
  • Paved driveways take longer to lay compared to the other options.

Resin

This is formed from a combination of either stone or gravel and polyurethane resin. The major advantage of this material is that it is permeable so you won’t have to create fancy drainage systems.

Pros

  • Resin driveways are durable. Being permeable makes them less prone to water damage and they can last for a long time up to 15+ years.
  • They are easy to maintain. Since there is no weed growth, the only maintenance required is to tidy the surface.
  • Resin driveways can be very pretty, giving your property an up-market look.

Cons

  • Resin driveways typically require the services of specialized installers. And this translates to high installation costs.
  • The colors may fade over time.

Having understood the different options for driveway surfacing you can go ahead to make a decision that aligns with what you want. Feel free to reach out to us at Derby Landscaping for all your driveway surfacing needs. It will be our pleasure to come to assess your property, show you the possibilities and help you come to a decision that is in your best interest. We can also provide you with a quote for free.

We will bring our wealth of experience to bear in ensuring that you get a driveway that lasts the test of time. Get in touch with our team today.

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