A road or parking lot can be paved with concrete or asphalt. Today’s highways are grayer than the slick blacktops that formerly conjured up images of an open road radiating heat from the sun. For various factors, concrete road pavement is swiftly catching up to asphalt in popularity. It can be confusing choosing from concrete vs. asphalt.
As such, remodeling your home can make it easy to forget about your driveway. But a new driveway can make your house look completely different. When guests arrive at your home, the driveway is the first thing they see, and if it’s in poor condition, it may have a negative impact on the rest of the property.
Concrete vs. Asphalt Driveway
Small chunks of rock are mixed with cement to create an attractive and long-lasting driveway material. It is possible to extend the life of your driveway with proper care and weather conditions following installation.
Asphalt is an aggregate material made of stone and sand, but its adhesive foundation is petroleum tar rather than cement, as is the case in concrete. Before it solidifies, contractors utilize high heat to liquefy hot mix asphalt and lay the driveway. You don’t have to wait a week for your asphalt driveway to harden before you can use it.
The location of the project is the first factor to take into account. Asphalt is the best material for roads, streets, and parking lots in colder locations with harsh winters. The following are some of the main reasons:
Frost heaves, expansion, and contraction are common in concrete, leading to deterioration and damage.
Salt, which is used to melt snow and ice, damages concrete. Snow and ice melt faster on asphalt than on concrete because of the higher solar heat absorption.
Pavement with asphalt has obvious advantages in cold climates but has the opposite effect in hot climates. In these instances, concrete is usually the preferred material. In severe heat, asphalt pavement softens and becomes greasy. During the hottest months of the year in the southern United States, asphalt pavement can reach temperatures over 100 degrees Fahrenheit.
Even though asphalt is initially less expensive than concrete, the long-term costs of maintenance make it more expensive. The installation cost of asphalt is lower than that of concrete. Installing asphalt can cost up to a quarter of the price per square foot of concrete. All that is required is a fresh layer of asphalt instead of reconstructing the existing base when creating an asphalt driveway.
A new asphalt driveway will provide you with a better return on your investment (ROI) because it is less expensive and can raise the value of your home.
As long as there are no cracks in the concrete, it can last for 30 years with regular care. It is more resistant to deterioration and distortion from exposure to the elements than asphalt. Concrete can withstand larger weights, such as trucks and other heavy machinery, because it is a non-flexible material.
A properly maintained asphalt driveway can last anywhere from 15 to 20 years. Asphalt is less prone to cracking than concrete since it is a more pliable substance. Temperatures of at least 120 degrees Fahrenheit are required for asphalt to stick to your shoes or car.
A gray concrete driveway may not be to your taste, but you may radically change its appearance by resurfacing it. The manufacturer can apply patterns and tints to enhance the overall look of your house. Installation costs would rise if the design were altered in this way. Staining or tinting concrete to any color you like is easy, thanks to concrete’s porous nature. You can also use a stamp or a brush to add texture to the concrete.
Asphalt is a dark gray to black color, hence the label “blacktop,” while concrete is a light gray color. On the other hand, asphalt provides a more muted aspect for your driveway than concrete.
The main entrance of your home is a great place to use concrete if you want to match your home’s color scheme, mimic the impression of brick, or add a little interest with a pattern or design element.
However, If you’re looking for a sleek look that blends in with the street, asphalt is a wonderful option.
Although refinishing and resealing concrete driveways isn’t strictly necessary, it improves the surface’s long-term appearance. It is only necessary to clean concrete driveways regularly to eliminate oil and radiator fluid buildup.
In terms of stains from motor oil, gas, and rust, asphalt’s black surface and matte finish hide most of them reasonably effectively. To keep concrete looking its best, you’ll need to use a more vigorous cleaning and degreasing process.
You only need a wire brush, light soap, and warm water to clean a concrete driveway.
Six months to a year following installation, asphalt needs a sealing application to protect it. Resurfacing and sealing are required regularly (every three to five years) to keep the surface protected and extend its useful life. To maintain your driveway looking and functioning at its best, speak with nearby driveway sealing professionals.
DIY asphalt repairs and resurfacing are quite straightforward.
Material such as concrete is recyclable. The product also lasts for half a century, which reduces the number of resources and waste produced.
Reusing asphalt from your current (or other) driveways saves time and energy during the construction process since the asphalt may be incorporated into the new surface. Porous or permeable asphalt, for example, allows water to percolate through the pavement and into the soil below, aiding with water drainage. When constructed using concrete, water must be discharged into nearby streams or the groundwater table.
Call an Expert
Your driveway can make or break the value of your property; choosing the right material can be challenging and complicated. Whether or not you go with asphalt or concrete will be determined by your priorities, such as long-term use, aesthetic appeal, financial viability, and so on. We recommend speaking with an experienced masonry contractor like ours who has installed both materials and is familiar with their advantages and disadvantages before making a final decision.
Contact a trusted masonry contractor like Paragon Remodeling to help you during this process.