Homeowners often try to decide if they should replace their driveway with asphalt or concrete. It is not always an easy decision; especially when you consider the cost that is involved in such a large renovation project. This article specifically addresses the pros and cons of installing a diy resin driveways versus a concrete driveway.
- Appearance; concrete just looks better. It is the standard for even the most expensive homes.
- No annual maintenance; Once initially sealed, concrete doesn’t require any annual maintenance
- Lasts much longer; Concrete should last 20 years or more if installed correctly.
- Concrete can be stained/stamped to look like brick, slate, or stone for a rich look
- Concrete is versatile in how it is placed and designed. Curves, color, finish, and textures add versatility to the appearance of concrete.
- Concrete adds value to your home. People just associate concrete with being the best money can buy.
- It’s concrete! I’m a mason and I’m biased!
However, how bad it cracks and where is often up to the mason that installed it. With proper base preparation and proper expansion cutting, cracks should be hidden and kept to a minimum.
- Concrete is susceptible to road de-icer which could ruin surface finishes. It is true that in the northern climates where roads are treated with salt or other road de-icer, the finish on your concrete can be damaged by road de-icer IF it is not properly sealed with a premium penetrating sealer.
- Cheaper initial cost. If you need paving material on your driveway and you don’t have the money for concrete, asphalt can be an excellent alternative. It is certainly better than dirt, mud or stone.
- Asphalt must be re-sealed once a year. You either have to pay someone or you have to do it yourself; either way, this is the worst part of owning an asphalt driveway. If you skip sealing your driveway, it will degrade much more quickly and cost you even more.
- Asphalt wears out faster. No matter if you seal it or not, asphalt just crumbles, cracks, and sinks with vehicle weight. It is not as durable as concrete.
- Asphalt soaks up oil and gas. Asphalt is susceptible to oil and gas spills/leaks from your car. Every place you park your car, there will be stains.
- Asphalt is Dirty; with a capital “D”. Asphalt is just plain dirty. Walk around on your asphalt driveway and then look at the bottom of your shoes. Yuck. The binder used to keep asphalt together is made with tar. When you seal the cracks in asphalt, you use tar. Tar sticks to everything; including you. Then you track that into your house.
- Asphalt costs more: Wait. Didn’t I say it was cheaper? Yes, but only initially. In the long run, asphalt is going to cost you more because of having to replace it when it wears out. Not to mention it cost money to seal it every year. It is just not made to last as long as concrete. This con just crossed out the only “pro” for asphalt.
There are many factors to consider as you think about which type of driveway to install. It is easy to see, concrete is initially more expensive, but will outperform and therefore outlast asphalt every time; making concrete the cost effective solution. Maintenance free concrete will not only add immediate beauty and value to your home, it will be a permanent driveway solution that adds beauty and value to your home for decades to come.