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Concrete vs Asphalt

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There are two traditional options when it comes to drivewaypaving: asphalt and concrete. Although they are different in many ways, they both require a similar amount of upkeep and care. Asphalt, made with a tar adhesive, is known to dry quickly so you can enjoy the finished product sooner.

Even though concrete’s cement adhesive takes longer to set, there are more options when it comes to staining and painting. This makes concrete the more aesthetically-pleasing and versatile option. Take a more in-depth look at these options to determine what’s best for your driveway.

Asphalt

Asphalt is a great choice for any driveway. It is quick to set, making it the preferred choice for those looking to use their driveway right away. It also features a well-draining base of compacted granular fill that helps with water run-off, along with a compacted surface to prevent wear and tear.

The biggest downside to asphalt driveways is the added maintenance compared to concrete. However, the more steps you take to maintain your driveway, the longer it will last.

It’s essential to keep up with regular cleaning of asphalt to ensure that no cracks or dips form. Follow a few of these maintenance tips:

Be sure to deter any run-off water from accumulating on the surface of your asphalt driveway or walkways. Keeping gutters clean and using run-off gutter extensions will help prevent pools of water from forming above and below your asphalt.

Remove dirt and debris often by using a stiff-bristled broom or spray with a hose.

You may need to have your asphalt resealed every few years to ensure that no debris or dirt gets wedged into the asphalt, as this causes unwanted cracks.

Concrete

Concrete is a great, low-cost alternative to asphalt driveways. Since concrete is so durable, it makes a lasting addition to any driveway or walkway, and it can even be used as flooring in a garage or finished basement. It is also the more aesthetically pleasing option, since it can be stained or painted, creating a unique glossy finish to any project.

Unfortunately, concrete takes a long time to set, so you won’t find a quick turnaround with concrete paving. Additionally, this durable option can also form cracks over time due to poor upkeep and moisture.

Here are a few tips to keep your new concrete driveway looking like new:

The main step is to simply perform light cleaning regularly using a little water and a stiff-bristled broom.

Regularly reseal concrete areas, typically every year to every other year. Regular sealing protects concrete from the elements, including snow and ice, and it reduces the probability of moisture affecting the surface.

Since concrete is so heavy, it’s quite possible that soil will erode from underneath it over time. If this happens, you might notice cracks or dips forming in your concrete.

Luckily, a local contractor who performs concrete repair in Denver can easily repair these issues using certain tools and techniques. For example, foam jacking, a process that fills dips and eroded areas with durable foam, can gently lift concrete back into place.

Which Should You Choose?

You decision really depends on what you’re looking for in terms of aesthetics and upkeep. Although asphalt may be cheaper to pour initially than concrete, it requires more upkeep to reduce the signs of wear and tear. In addition, choosing a stained concrete will provide a more aesthetically pleasing look, but will certainly cost more. Whatever method you choose, be sure to keep up with regular maintenance. This will ensure your concrete or asphalt driveway always looks good no matter the season.

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