While your driveway may look like an unexciting part of your building, it is actually among the important elements of the landscape. You may be wondering, why? That is because it is being used on a daily basis and it is fundamental in the creation of curb appeal for your home.
The resale value of your property will increase if your driveway is attractive. Well, that is if you intend on selling. But before then, it is the first thing you will see each time you get back home. Paving the driveway of any building makes the exterior appear safe and neat. However, the landscaping needs to be carefully planned to bring about a long-lasting effect.
As a homeowner, you need to know what is involved in paving your driveway. This will enable you to make the right decision and protect you from contractors who just want to earn quick cash. If you also need to repave the driveway, it will be easier to know what to expect from a driveway repair service if you have a basic understanding of what it entails.
When Can a Driveway Be Paved?
A driveway can be paved two years after the property has been built. This period of waiting will allow the ground to settle properly, thereby, providing a strong base which is essential when paving the driveway. On the contrary, if the property is not a new one or older than two years, all you need to do is choose a suitable season for the paving.
The ideal paving condition is when the weather is relatively warm and dry. If the weather is too wet, the base gravel will wash out quickly. And that base is needed for the asphalt to set in if you are using asphalt paving. Different materials are used to pave driveways. Keep reading so you can know which one suits you.
Types of Paving Materials
The most common materials people use when paving driveways are asphalt, poured concrete, gravel, and pavers. Before settling for a type of paving material, you need to know that every driveway will degenerate with time, but some will require face lifting faster than others. However, this depends on the weather conditions in your area, how often the driveway is being used, and if the paving was properly done.
We will be discussing each type of paving material; including its pros and cons.
Asphalt paving combines stone, sand, and gravel with asphalt cement (a liquid petroleum product). This mixture is unbelievably stinky and very hot. Asphalt is commonly used in areas that require snow removal during snowy periods. It is also a suitable option if you are on a strict budget.
- It is economical
- It is not likely to crack due to frost heaves
- Asphalt makes it easy to remove snow
- Re-layering is possible when it gets worn or damaged
- It is prone to cracking when sealed improperly
- It requires routine sealing, every 3 – 5 years
Concrete is gotten from a mixture of rocks, sand, and stone with cement and water. Concrete paving can be customized to suit different architectural styles.
- It is long-lasting and can be maintained with ease
- Various decorations can be made on it, including stamping and staining
- It can be used to form various geometric shapes, giving your house a custom look
- The site and frames need to be prepared properly before pouring the concrete
- Roots of nearby trees can crack the concrete over time
There are 2 types: crushed granite and traditional gravel. Crushed granite has a finer texture and it is very stable. Traditional gravel is usually used in rural areas.
- It has a variety of colors
- Minimal maintenance is required besides weeding and regrading
- It allows water to seep back to the ground which makes it eco-friendly
- It resists cracking
- Some gravel may be lost when using a machine to remove snow
- When it gets loose, it will look messy
They come in different styles: concrete, cobblestone, and brick. The concrete version is stronger than the poured concrete we mentioned earlier.
- If a piece goes bad, you can fix it without having to replace the entire driveway
- The concrete option is basically interlocking, and this makes for quick installation
- They are expensive
- Some designs and patterns can look outdated over time
- Roots of trees can damage pavers
The appearance of your driveway is very important. If it is stained and cracked, people will have a low impression of your home, whether your lawns are well trimmed or not. Hence, you need to choose the right paving material that will last for a long time.