There are various material options to choose from when repairing or building a new driveway or parking lot. Among all the different choices, asphalt and concrete are two of the most popular paving materials.
How to choose the best one for a specific construction project?
While cost is a determinant factor, there are other factors to consider. Both types of surface structures offer pros and cons. An understanding of the basic concepts can help you choose the best option for your paving project.
Things to Consider When Choosing Paving Material
Installation and Maintenance
When planning for your new paving project, keep in mind the construction procedures and preventive maintenance. With asphalt, construction along with labor and equipment is much easier and faster.
For ongoing maintenance, keeping water from pooling, filling cracks and sealcoating will aid in keeping the asphalt pavement in good working order.
Using concrete as a paving material requires more heavy equipment and much more labor. It takes longer for the surface to be ready for use since it requires a set curing time. For maintenance, it requires very little, but it can lose the visual aesthetics soon. Reinstallation is a complicated task for concrete roads.
Upfront and Maintenance Cost
The installation cost of concrete is higher than asphalt pavements. Repairing the concrete road is a complex, time-consuming task. In most cases, it becomes necessary to remove the concrete slabs and do a replacement.
On the other hand, asphalt resurfacing is quick, it offers affordable maintenance techniques, making it a great return on investment. Timely repairs can extend the lifespan of asphalt pavements for 50 years or more.
Asphalt is an eco-friendly recyclable paving material. It can be grounded for reuse. Hence all asphalt projects are sustainable technology. Porous asphalt is permeable so, it makes room for the rainwater to drip beneath into the deep soil layers.
Concrete is also recyclable. The old slabs can be broken to form gravel for various uses. However, the concrete road is non-porous. Hence, it causes the rainwater to drain away.
Asphalt is the preferred paving material for driveways and roads in hardiness zones receiving heavy snowfall every year; the surface of the asphalt aids in snow melting and ice thawing.
Concrete is a sure winner in this category. This strong and durable material can last for a very long time. The surface of it can stay relatively cool in very hot climates.
Appearance and Aesthetics
Asphalt contractors recommend using asphalt for residential and or commercial driveways and parking lots for visual appeal. The rich dark color of asphalt adds to the beauty and elegance of the property.
If colorful designs are on your mind, concrete is the best option. The substance mixes well with specific dyes to provide any shade to match design themes.
Asphalt Roads and Paving
- Quick and easy repairs
- Anti-skid surface
- Melts ice faster
- Requires periodic maintenance
- Vulnerable to water, vehicle oil, and UV rays
Concrete Roads and Pavements
- Extended lifespan (20-40 years)
- Bears the pressure of heavy vehicles
- Expensive installation
- Fewer maintenance options
- Complicated to repair or reconstruct
- Driveways become noisy and bumpy
At a Glance
Concrete is very strong and durable, offering better resistance to climatic and chemical impacts. For this, it would make the best material for handling busy roads and driveways and heavy vehicles. Resurfacing or repairing is very difficult.
Asphalt is susceptible to water and vehicle fluid damage. But it is very flexible and friendlier when resurfacing or performing repairs.
Property owners can achieve a higher return on investment with asphalt since it is easier to maintain offering and repair costs are minimal compared to concrete.
Asphalt surfaces have excellent traction, are skid-resistant, and help in melting snow faster.
When you are ready to hire a local asphalt paving contractor for your new driveway or parking lot, feel free to search or online directory of local asphalt paving contractors and companies near you.