Heated DrivewaysShould I install a heated driveway?
Last week we received a call from a homeowner that was interested in installing a heated driveway. They have a rather steep drive with a northern exposure. Here are some items to consider if you are interested in a heated driveway. There are two options; electric and/or installing a boiler. The electric option is made up of heat cables and the boiler option uses hot water that is pumped through PEX tubing. An automatic sensor can also be installed that detects snow and ice which would then activate the system. There are pros and cons to both systems, for example electric can be more efficient, heat the surface quicker and take less maintenance, while the boiler system can be a little more costly to purchase and install and require more maintenance. With winter storms and freezing temperatures, steep driveways and sidewalks do create a hazard and we all know the hard work of shoveling.
Heated driveways offer a great benefit for the assurance of a safer environment and no more sore muscles. Another positive impact of heated driveways is the increased longevity of the concrete. Heated driveways are resistant to corrosion because ice melt material is no longer required. Also keep in mind you must take into account the cost of tear out/haul-off and re-pour of concrete for the drive so depending on the amount of concrete required there will be this additional expense for concrete. One can always look at pavers vs. concrete for a cost comparison. Proper design for a heated driveway is critically important from layout to coverage and local weather must be taken into consideration. A Prescott heated driveway layout will be entirely different than a heated driveway in Flagstaff or Montana. One can always look at the installation of pavers vs. concrete as well. And last but not least do not forget the unattended consequences of a heated driveway. From cute deer and rabbits to javelina and skunks these animals like warm areas to snuggle into at night. Heated driveways have been known to invite the critters over for a warm nights sleep.