asphalt driveways

The Most Important Benefits of Getting Asphalt Driveways

Driving on a gravel driveway can be annoying, especially if you want to take good care of your car. Gravel can pop up and ding your paint job, and you may have trouble with mud and flooding when it rains. Getting your driveway paved can be a great investment in your home, but it’s important that you choose the right material.

Asphalt can be a fantastic choice for your new driveway. Read on to discover some of the benefits of asphalt driveways and how they can improve your home.

Flexibility

One of the biggest benefits asphalt offers for driveways is additional flexibility. Driveways bear enormous loads, and over time, concrete, which is tremendously inflexible, may start to crack. These cracks can become worse in the winter, as we’ll discuss later, and can present trip and fall hazards.

Unlike concrete, asphalt has some flexibility that allows it to give way when needed. This can help to prevent cracks and keep your driveway in better shape for longer. However, it is important to note that almost any paved driveway surface is likely to crack over time, so your asphalt might experience some small cracks.

Affordability

Getting a driveway paved is an investment in your home, and it comes with a demanding budget. Concrete generally costs between $5 and $7 for a square foot for a plain gray slab. If you want any sort of color or embellishment on your concrete driveway, you can expect to pay as much as $18 per square foot. 

Asphalt, however, is much more affordable at only $3 to $4 a square foot. While you can’t get any special embellishments, the smooth black surface is a classic that will fit with any home style. And if your driveway is 800 square feet, you could save as much as $3,000 or more just by installing an asphalt driveway instead of concrete. 

Winter-Hardiness 

If you live somewhere that gets very cold in the winter, chances are you deal with concrete roads breaking down as temperatures drop. Concrete shrinks when it gets cold, which can lead to cracking and potholes. Salt and ice melt can also seriously damage concrete, leaving it brittle and crumbling in the spring. 

Asphalt isn’t as susceptible to these problems as concrete and can withstand harsh winter weather better. While it, too, will shrink up, because it isn’t one solid surface like concrete, it’s slightly less susceptible to cracking. It’s also less likely to be damaged by salt or ice melt and won’t become as brittle as concrete.

Timeline

When you pour a concrete driveway, you have to allow time for the concrete to cure. Depending on weather patterns in your area and the size of the driveway, this could take as long as a week. And in the meantime, you’re left without access to your garage, parking on the street or wherever you can find a spot.

When you pour an asphalt driveway, it’ll be ready to use as soon as it hardens up, which is a matter of just a few hours. Your installer might recommend that you stay off it for a day or so to give it time to fully set and avoid dents or cracks. But compared with the set time for concrete, you’ll be able to use your new driveway much sooner with asphalt.

DIY Repair

No matter how much care you take or which material you choose, your driveway will wear down over time. Cracks and holes will appear, and if they’re not addressed, they’ll degrade further. Repairing concrete is patchwork at best and leaves your concrete looking disheveled and uneven.

Repairing asphalt, however, is a job you can manage easily enough on your own. You can resurface and reseal your asphalt so it looks brand new. It’s also a good idea to reseal your asphalt every so often to prevent cracks and keep your driveway looking its best for as long as possible. 

Environmental Impact

These days, more and more people are becoming aware of the impact their lives have on our planet. One of the biggest contributors to climate change is the construction industry, and concrete is a big part of that. In addition to the environmental cost of manufacturing concrete, concrete cannot be recycled.

Asphalt, on the other hand, can be recycled when it gets old and made into new surfaces. You can reprocess asphalt without losing any of the material quality in the new surface. This helps to save not only materials but also the impact of manufacturing asphalt to begin with. 

Performance 

You might be surprised to learn that asphalt out-performs concrete in a variety of different arenas. Asphalt works well for driving or walking on, since it is smooth and resistant to cracking. But it can also help to make your home safer if it’s constructed the right way.

When installed properly, asphalt can quickly move water off of its surface. This means that, unlike with concrete driveways, you won’t get standing pools of water every time it rains. It can also protect the surface from breaking down and may even help to direct water away from your home and garage.

Discover the Benefits of Asphalt Driveways

Getting your driveway paved can be a fantastic investment in your home, as well as making for a much more pleasant living experience. Asphalt driveways outperform concrete in almost every arena, from affordability and environmental impact to winter-hardiness and performance. And your asphalt driveway will be ready to use in a matter of hours, not days.

If you’d like to discover the benefits of asphalt driveways for yourself, check out the rest of our site at Washington Pavements. We are paving your neighborhood, and high quality is always guaranteed. Get a quote from us today and experience the hard work and pride we put into every project for yourself.