Asphalt vs Concrete Paving: Which Is The Better Option For My Driveway?

Asphalt vs Concrete Paving

It can be easy to forget about your driveway when you’re planning on renovating your home, but you shouldn’t underestimate what a new driveaway can do for the overall appearance of your home. The driveway is the first thing that people see as they approach your house, so if it’s old and worn, it can give a bad impression on your home overall- even if the rest of your house is beautifully finished.

If you’re thinking of doing up your driveway, one of the most important questions you should be asking yourself is what type of material to choose. Since driveways get a lot of use out of them, you want to choose a material that not only looks good, but is strong and will stand the test of time as well.

Concrete and asphalt are two popular types of paving you can use for your driveway. Both are made from similar materials, however while concrete consists of sand, water, cement and aggregates, asphalt is made from either gravel, sand, crushed rock or tar. These minor differences can have quite a significant effect on the overall outcome.

There are a number of pros and cons depending on what choice you go for. To help you make your decision, here are some things to consider:

Appearance

The main reason you’re probably doing up your driveway is so it looks better, so appearance is always going to be an important factor. Asphalt is dark and textured, and since it doesn’t tint or color very well, your options are limited to grey or black. This is fine for most people, however if you’re after a specific color or design, then it’s better to go for concrete.

Concrete has a smoother texture than asphalt, and can be stained, tinted, stamped, etched, or colored- so if you’ve got a specific design in mind, you have much more freedom to make this happen.

Cost

If you’re wanting to spend only a small amount of your budget on your drive renovation, then your best bet is to go for asphalt. Asphalt paving tends to be cheaper than concrete, with a concrete driveway costing almost double the price of an asphalt one.

However, when looking at costs in the long run, concrete will end up saving you the most money. This is because asphalt driveways tend to require a lot more maintenance and general upkeep, which will eat into your finances years down the line.

If you’re searching for a top-rated paving company to create your dream driveway, then this interlock company in Ottawa are worth looking into. With their handy asphalt paving calculator, you can see exactly how much it would cost you to repave your driveway.

Durability And Maintenance

While an asphalt driveway can last for an impressive 20 years, a concrete driveway takes the durability crown, and can last around double the amount of time than an asphalt driveway. In terms of maintenance, as stated earlier, asphalt needs much more maintaining- though it is generally cheaper to maintain than concrete.

When asphalt needs maintenance or replacement, only the top layer needs to be serviced and repaved. The lower layers are considered permanent, so you never have to worry about getting them replaced. With a concrete driveway, if it needed lots of work doing to it, you would have to start from scratch and repave the whole thing, which can wind up being incredibly time consuming- not to mention expensive.

The weather plays an important determining factor in how long your driveway will last for before it needs any repairs. If you live in a hot environment, then you’re better off having a concrete driveway, since asphalt can become sticky and crack as it cools.

Concrete, on the other hand, can expand and in colder temperatures, causing expensive damage to your driveway. As asphalt absorbs more heat from the sun, it also causes snow and ice to melt quicker, so it’s a great option for if you live in a colder environment.

Installation

Asphalt can be installed more quickly than concrete, and only takes a few hours to cure before it can be driven on. Concrete takes a couple of days until it is completely dry, though it’s recommended that you wait up to a week before driving on it. The last thing you want is to be leaving tire marks on your band new driveway!

Environmental Impact

Asphalt is much more environmentally friendly than concrete and is considered a green technology as it can be recycled, while concrete has to be taken away and disposed of in a special facility. Certain types of asphalt also help with water drainage which benefits the eco-system.