A driveway is an important part of most homes and you want one that looks just as nice as the rest of your home. Whether you’re looking to re-design your driveway or pour one for the first time, choosing the right material is key. When you look at driveway materials, you’ll find the two most common materials are concrete and asphalt.
On the surface, both materials seem rather similar. But once you do the research, you’ll see the differences between asphalt and concrete and which one is best for you.
Admittedly, concrete is a little more expensive than an asphalt driveway, costing about 45 percent more. But you should also take other factors into account before making your decision. Cost can be tempting but a cheaper floor that doesn’t last will end up costing more in the long run.
Concrete is more durable than asphalt and can be installed in any climate. Asphalt works fine in colder climates, but constant exposure to high temperatures causes asphalt to soften and crack. Concrete is more resistant to higher temperatures and, with proper sealing, can also stand up to colder temperature just as well as asphalt.
Both concrete and asphalt driveways need sealed to be effective, but this doesn’t make them exactly the same. Asphalt is a petroleum based material that lightens and becomes more brittle over time. If asphalt is sealed too soon after installation, the asphalt will stay soft. If it’s sealed too late, it’ll become brittle and start breaking.
On the other hand, concrete is a strong material that will maintain its durability once it’s properly sealed. With a sealed concrete, you have a driveway that will withstand adverse weather, harsh conditions, regular traffic, and won’t become brittle or soft.
A properly maintained asphalt driveway can lost around 30 years, but remember that this requires the right climate, sealing every 4 to 5 years, and watching it lighten as the petroleum base oxidizes.
Properly maintained concrete driveways last much longer with less maintenance. By sealing your concrete every few years with a quality hydrophobic sealer, you can protect and maintain your driveway for even longer than the best maintained asphalt.
Quite frankly, a concrete driveway offers much more design and appearance options than asphalt driveway. Asphalt is a rather bland driveway material while concrete can be customized in any number of ways. From stamped concrete to stenciled designs and more, concrete offers versatility that asphalt simply can’t match.
So there you have it, a direct comparison between asphalt and concrete driveways. But all we can do is give you the facts. Do some more research and decide which driveway material is right for you.