Although driveways are among the first things guests and visitors to your house will see, they are also one of the most neglected aspects of home building and upkeep.
Putting up a new driveway may be done in many ways, each with its advantages and disadvantages. Gravel and asphalt are two of the most common driveway surfacing alternatives for rural homes.
Unfortunately, first-time homeowners may feel overwhelmed when deciding whether to install an asphalt or gravel driveway. This article compares gravel and asphalt as potential driveway materials.
Asphalt driveways are attractive and may raise the value of a house. The most notable benefit of asphalt driveways is the elegant appearance they provide to any home, making it seem like a work of art from the street. It’s the best option for neighborhoods where blacktop streets link residences.
Gravel driveways are popular due to their low initial and ongoing cost. Installing a gravel road is as easy as unloading a truckload, spreading it around, and leveling it. The platform is so sturdy that even a semi-truck cannot move it. Additionally, it’s more durable than asphalt.
Gravel Vs. Asphalt: Which Is Better?
Here are the major aspects that you need to examine to understand what is superior between the two driveway materials:
Both gravel and asphalt driveways may last for decades if properly maintained. Depending on installation quality, use, and upkeep, asphalt driveways may survive for 20 years or more. However, a gravel driveway, barring any unexpected events, may endure for generations.
The installation of asphalt driveways is crucial to their long-term durability and maintenance. Maintaining a gravel driveway is much easier than an asphalt one. Pebbles, tiny stones, and shards of rock are not damaged by pressure. Additionally, it requires proper drainage to divert water away from the substrate and prevent flooding.
Gravel comes in many colors and styles, whereas asphalt only comes in a few. A gravel driveway lacks the gloss of a beautiful, dark asphalt one. However, if you care about aesthetics and want to ensure your driveway blends in with the rest of your yard, gravel might be the way to go.
In comparison to asphalt driveways, gravel driveways are often less expensive. When comparing costs, gravel is the cheaper alternative, but asphalt is still a feasible paving choice. Therefore, before choosing gravel for its low price, discuss asphalt and the project’s cost with a local paving professional.
Gravel and pea gravel are used to level the driveway and fill it in. Gravel pavement may be placed more quickly and with less effort than asphalt. It will have settled enough in a week for vehicles to be driven on it.
The removal of snow from gravel driveways damages the rocks, and the only guaranteed method to remove snow without disturbing the stones is to use salt or sand. Gravel tends to shift more during rain and snow than asphalt does. Thus, asphalt is the preferable winter option. But asphalt can take the heat and keep on going.
When heavy loads, such as those associated with industrial machinery, must be supported, gravel is often the material of choice. However, although asphalt’s adaptability makes it capable of supporting large loads like your municipal trash truck, particularly during seasons of severe cold or heat, it may also make your driveway more susceptible to cracking and other forms of damage.
It is necessary to rake, shovel, and grade gravel driveways to replenish stone that the weight of cars and equipment has displaced. Asphalt, on the other hand, will maintain its compacted state for quite some time if properly installed.
Having a gravel driveway is like giving your home a country feel. Gravel driveways may not be as polished and attractive as asphalt ones, but they may still be aesthetically pleasing.
Gravel isn’t as stable as asphalt and will be washed away over time. Because of the high risk of damage from flooding, gravel pavement is not recommended for use in locations prone to flooding.
The Best Paving Material for Your Job
Both asphalt and gravel are durable, long-lasting, and cost-effective paving options.
Asphalt is the way to go if a homeowner wants a driveway that stands out and adds value to their home. Asphalt has the most visual appeal and durability, but it is costly to maintain and always looks dingy. It is more inexpensive but doesn’t look as attractive as asphalt and will wash away over time. However, a gravel driveway is the best option if the family is looking for a more rustic, low-maintenance approach that can endure for a century with the right care.
Weigh each choice’s benefits and drawbacks before deciding which is best for your driveway. After assessing your alternatives, call Biondi Paving and Engineering to learn more about your decision and how you can obtain the most from it.