Funnily enough, having a well maintained driveway may be one of the first things people notice about your home. Even if your house is well maintained with good landscaping, if you have a cracked driveway with weeds growing out of it and potholes, your neighbors and passerby are sure to notice. Luckily, if you need asphalt driveway repair or concrete driveway repair, it’s usually a pretty simple fix that won’t cost you a fortune. Even better, you’ll have a beautiful and updated driveway that won’t wreak havoc on your tires and keep your house looking perfectly put together! And if you’ve been looking to expand your driveway a bit to accommodate more cars, well, now is your chance! Contact a driveway contractor to figure out the best way to go about installing a new driveway and making it seamlessly blend with the rest of your house and yard.
The Real Question: Concrete or Asphalt?
To be honest, it often depends on what the homeowner is looking for. Asphalt is generally a cheaper option than concrete but holds up just as well, while others argue that concrete is totally hands-off (no maintenance required) and lasts for longer than asphalt. If you live in an area with pretty dramatic temperature changes from year to year, asphalt might be better for you, since it shrinks and expands with the temperature, instead of cracking like concrete does. On the other hand, if you’re looking for something more long lasting that you won’t really have to worry about for years, concrete is the way to go — it typically lasts around 30 years, where asphalt has an average lifespan of 20. Regarding maintanence, it’s a little tough to say — asphalt requires more upkeep than concrete, but asphalt driveway repair is considerably easier than concrete driveway repair. Oil and gasoline leaks or spills are less noticeable on asphalt than concrete, but gasoline will cause damage to the asphalt, unlike concrete. You may have more decorative options with concrete — colored concrete comes in over 250 hues and shades — but asphalt can look more sleek and uniform. Asphalt is also the preferred parking area material in the United States, with over 90% of parking area surfaced with it.
What Should I Expect In Terms of Cost and Time?
Asphalt is a cheaper option than concrete, usually between $2 to $5 dollars per square foot in the driveway. Concrete runs $3 to $10 per square foot and if there’s extra elements for decoration, the price can go much higher. However, since asphalt needs more upkeep than concrete, the maintenance costs for asphalt driveway repair might outweigh the cheaper initial price. Alternatively, one expensive concrete driveway repair plus the higher upfront cost might make other homeowners choose asphalt in the first place.
In terms of time, installing an asphalt driveway can take between one to two days on average. It can be driven on almost immediately once it’s poured, whereas you have to wait usually up to a week before driving on freshly poured concrete. That can be a major pain if you usually park in your driveway! However, asphalt takes up to about a year to cure and may be noticeably softer on warm days — just be careful to not leave indentations like a kickstand or other pointy objects on it during that time if you can.
A concrete driveway may take a little longer — between one and three days — and of course, there’s the week needed to let the driveway properly cure before it can be driven on.
Who Should I Call to Help Install My New Driveway?
A driveway contractor or a concrete and asphalt company can usually take care of all your driveway installation or repair needs. Your contractor may know companies that can offer a good, competitive rate for your asphalt driveway repair or concrete driveway repair. Ask your friends or family for referrals or look up reviews on local companies in your area.
You don’t have to live with an ugly driveway. You might be surprised at the difference it makes to your home and yard overall!