Comparing Concrete and Asphalt Driveways

If you’re in the planning stages of installing a new driveway for your home or business, it’s important to understand the differences between a concrete and asphalt driveway. The differences between these two types of materials go beyond just the look of the finished product. Let’s get the scoop from Honolulu concrete contractors.

Installation Costs

Asphalt driveways are among the most affordable options for your driveway. Concrete is at a higher price but has a significantly longer lifespan and durability.

Appearance and Finish

Concrete driveways offer a variety of options to complete the look of your driveway. The look of your driveway can be enhanced with stamping, staining, or polishing the concrete. Oftentimes, homeowners prefer concrete because they can incorporate it into the overall design of their landscaping. The curb appeal cannot be underestimated. With so many options for decorating concrete, owners can really personalize what would normally be a plain concrete driveway. Asphalt driveways don’t have any options that allow modification to look or finish.

Maintenance and Upkeep

Asphalt driveways require regular maintenance due to their less durable surface. They also require regular re-sealing at least every couple of years, depending on the volume of use and exposure. Concrete driveways are much more durable and require very little maintenance.

One of the advantages to maintenance of asphalt driveways is that the filling in of cracks or the resealing process tends to blend in much more than the repairs on concrete. When a crack is filled on a concrete driveway, they are clearly visible, unless additional staining is done which drives the cost of repairs up.

Lifespan

Asphalt driveways can last about 20 years if cared for properly. Without proper care they can require substantial maintenance and repair in as little as 5 years. Concrete driveways, on the other hand, can last between 30-40 years. Typically, it is more const-effective to completely replace a concrete driveway rather than try to repair it.

Environmentally Friendly

Both asphalt and concrete are considered a green materials which is important for homeowners worried about the environmental impact any home improvement projects will have. Because asphalt and concrete can both be re-used, they are categorized as green.

Durability

Driveways take a lot of beating so they are subject to a lot of wear and tear. One of the biggest factors impacting a driveway’s durability, regardless of material is weather. In places where there is a lot of snow, a concrete driveway can sustain damage from the freeze-thaw cycle. Not only this, if not properly sealed it can sustain damage by the salt used in the de-icing process. Asphalt driveways are more pliable so they don’t really sustain much damage from the freeze-thaw cycle.

Obviously, there are pros and cons to both asphalt and concrete driveways for your driveway. Most homeowners opt for concrete driveways because of the aesthetics. Simply put, asphalt doesn’t always work with the look and feel of the home.