Concrete and asphalt are some of the most common materials which are used to make driveways. It is important to analyze their pros and cons before using any of the materials to construct a driveway. Asphalt contains tar which gives it its adhesive property. On the other hand, cement is responsible for the adhesive property of concrete. The two substrates give these materials their unique characteristics which also affects the maintenance process required, durability and cost.
To use either asphalt or concrete to make before and after resin driveways, the base must be compact. This will ensure that it can withstand the weight of the materials and that of the load e.g. cars. The two materials are made from stones and sand.
Factors to consider when choosing a driveway material
There are very many properties which you should consider when choosing a driveway material and these include:
It is true that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Therefore, you will expect a number opinions when it comes to the aesthetic value of the driveways. For people who have the feeling that a driveway should be an extension of the road then they will definitely go for asphalt. However, it is important to note that it is impossible to achieve a wide range of finishes when using this particular material. This is for the reason that it has to be rolled and compressed. Moreover, there has been very little options when it comes to the choice of the asphalt driveway color other that its standard color; black.
Generally, concrete is an easy material to work with when you want to realize a wide range of finishes. They can be stamped, etched or engraved into different designs. Furthermore, they can also be stained to get an array of colors. This gives a wide range of options which can be used to realize different designs making it a better choice for anyone who would wish to customize their his or her driveway.
When asphalt has been installed and subsequently sealed properly, they can may last for 30 years. The sealing process should be done a year after the first installation after which it should be redone after every 3 to 5 years. Of course this can be slightly expensive as compared to the concrete driveways which last for over 50 years without sealing.
On the other hand, concrete driveways stain easily as compared to asphalt driveways. Therefore, you have to use detergents to remove the stains. Apart from these, cracks in asphalt driveways are easier to seal than those of concrete driveways. Basically, each material has its unique advantages and disadvantages as far as the maintenance costs are concerned.
Weather and climate
This is yet another important factor to consider especially in areas where there is either very warm summers or very cold winters. In cold freezing winters, concrete suffer from frost heaving and has the tendency to crack. In addition to these, when salt is used to melt ice on a concrete driveway, it will create pits on the driveway. On the other hand, tar which is found in asphalt softens when exposed to high temperatures besides being tacky. Therefore, it is important to share the weather and climatic conditions with contractor before settling on any material.
There are two main factors to consider when it comes to cost: the installation cost and the maintenance cost. Asphalt is cheaper to install than concrete. However, fluctuations in oil prices directly affect its cost. Concrete is expensive though its cost will depend on the type of finishing which is required. It is important to note that asphalt requires low initial costs. However, when it comes to the “value over time”, it is advisable to go for concrete since they last longer than asphalt.