What Type of Driveway Material Should I Use? Part 2Last week Annie in Prescott wanted to know what type of driveway material to use; asphalt vs. concrete. This is part 2 to the response that will address location/size and stability of material.
Anne, when deciding on asphalt vs. concrete or another other material for that matter, you might want to consider the surrounding area in which your property is located. Most often, in higher end real estate locations, concrete or pavers are the overwhelming choice. For a long time, concrete was the only choice that allowed considerable decorative options, from color to surface treatments such as stamping and exposed aggregate. Concrete has developed with literally unending options for uniqueness. However, in recent years, there have been several new and creative decorative applications developed for asphalt and pavers are also a decorative and popular application for driveways. One needs to also consider access to and the size of the project. It is typically much easier to mobilize for and place concrete in smaller, more challenging locations. Asphalt can be difficult to install where access is greatly restricted and volumes are nominal. Anne, no matter which choice you make, it is vital that the sub base (the surface just below the final product) be correctly constructed. If the driveway is placed on a surface that is not stable, you will eventually have issues. Water runoff and collection should also be addressed before placing the final product. You must make sure that all surface water and drainage from the property, including roof gutters, are channeled away from the drive. If water is allowed to collect or “pond” on the surface or along the edge of the surface, it will migrate under the concrete or asphalt and cause damage to the sub structure, which will ultimately create problems for the drive. Both asphalt and concrete are porous surfaces which will allow water to seep through, so you must plan to drain the water flow away from the drive.