Cobblestone, Pavers and Brick Applications These are the Rolls Royce's of the driveway
Real driveway art where the look and designs make a statement!
Their beauty, elegance and grace also comes with a
hefty price tag. The reason they cost so much is because each
piece has to be hand set one at a time, and each piece has a purchase
Much time is spent hand laying these products, not
to mention color and design patterns and cutting hundreds of them to
fit. Think of it as putting together a large 10,000 piece puzzle,
on your hands and knees, where each piece weighs about 10 lbs., and you
have to make the pieces fit as you go!
This is a time consuming task, therefore making it very
expensive. Imagine having to purchase 10,000 pieces for example:
and each one cost $3.00, this product would cost the contractor $30,000.
Before he can even begin to bid on the driveway
installation and labor cost, he would need to know exactly what
product, colors and design pattern that you desire!
Stamped and Colored Concrete The durability of concrete with a more
These driveways come in a variety of styles and
colors. This is not as time consuming to install as a paver or
brick driveway. They add a touch of character and beauty far
beyond the standard concrete installations.
Your concrete professionals can show you the many
patterns and designs as well as color options. These driveways
also have a very long life expectancy (sometimes 50 years).
They need to be installed properly and survive the
first few seasons without cracking. All concrete installations
need expansion joints which control where the cracking will take place.
Re-bar or wire mess is also helpful to increase
its strength and decrease the chances of cracking.
It's hard to beat the durability of this product
provided it doesn't crack within the first year.
Cracking is more of a problem in the northern
climates because frost is always inevitable. Frosts heaves are
one of the major causes of surface cracks in all driveway products.
All concrete installations need joint expansions
which control where the cracking will take place. Re-bar or wire
mess is also helpful to increase it's strength and decrease the chances
For an additional cost, a color additive can be
applied to make a more appealing driveway, ask your concrete
professional! Concrete also can have a multitude of finishes and
dressed with stone (aggregates) or slate toppings.
Be careful not to make the finish real smooth or
it will become slippery when wet! On the downside, concrete can
be difficult to keep clean and stains can be difficult to remove.
& Concrete w/ aggregate Video
Durability: 30-50 year life expectancy Prince range: $4. sq/ft. - $8. sq/ft.
Plain concrete installed Prince
sq/ft. - $25. sq/ft. Colored Concrete
or w/ Aggregate Maintenance: semi-annual washing and sealing
Pervious Concrete Pervious concrete resembles a gray Rice Crispy
The concrete is made mostly of pea gravel, water
and cement -- minus the sand used in conventional concrete. The lack of
sand creates void spaces thus making it porous.
When rain falls on a Pervious driveway, it will
permeate straight down through as it does in your yard, You won't have
any water runoff. This helps prevent flooding
Besides reducing flooding, pervious concrete also
reduces water pollution, absorbs less heat than darker pavement, puts
rain water back in the ground and allows air and water to reach tree
Pervious concrete needs to be swept or vacuumed
occasionally to prevent clogging It can be difficult to keep clean and
stains can be difficult to remove.
Pervious concrete costs about twice as much as regular concrete
Stamped and Colored Asphalt The method of making asphalt look like brick has
been patented by a company know as StreetPrint.
To my knowledge, to become a street print
installer, a contractor needs to purchase
specialized equipment and
training from StreetPrint.
StreetPrint in most areas of the country runs 35-50% less
than other decorative alternatives such as brick pavers and
stamped concrete , and the number of
contractors that can install StreetPrint may be limited.
StreetPrint installations are no doubt beautiful,
colorants in the epoxy modified acrylic coating are
extremely color fast and will show little fade over its
useful life. The only maintenance required would be
periodic low pressure washing and spot oil removal as
needed. The epoxy modified acrylic generally will not
require a refreshing coat for 10 -12 years under normal
residential wear and tear .
The coloring is more expensive than seal coating
and needs to be done every decade.
These types of driveways
have all the durability of asphalt and have no weed control problem
associated with brick or paver installations.
Street Print is basically asphalt that looks like
brick or stone and comes in a variety of colors.
Durability: 10-30 year life expectancy Prince range: $4. sq/ft. - $12. sq/ft.
installed Coloring Cost: $1. - $3. sq/ft every 8-10 years
low pressure washing and spot oil removal as needed
Asphalt The plain old black look that just keeps America
Nearly every road in the world is made of asphalt
because it is the most economical.
Asphalt is resistant to cracking because it is
made of oil which gives it more elasticity than concrete. It is
easier to keep clean because it is already black. The downside is
the heat that it draws on a hot summer day (because of it's dark color)!
Asphalt can also be applied over concrete or be
re-applied over existing asphalt. This method is known as
resurfacing, and is only as good as the base you are covering.
For example: If you apply new asphalt over badly
cracked concrete or asphalt, within a year or so the resurface (the new
asphalt placed on top) will also crack.
With age, asphalt becomes brittle and dries out
from the elements. The older it is, the more vulnerable it is to
cracking. I believe that seal coating rejuvenates the elasticity
in asphalt and should be applied every 2 - 4 years.
Asphalt Berm or Curbing can also be used on
Asphalt pavements. Berm is installed by the linear foot to create
landscaping islands in parking lots or to prevent water runoff on steep
driveways, or as a curb.
Macadam Macadam driveways are basically crushed stone or
gravel driveways that are sprayed with a hot oil (liquid asphalt)
placed on the compacted gravel base.
Also known as Tar & Chip when applied to
existing asphalt or concrete driveways (resurface).
A layer of 1/4" - 1/2" colored stone is then
applied to fill the voids then rolled in. Cement sand slurry or a
coat of asphalt is sometimes used as a binder.
This system is an alternative to asphalt and is
popular, not only for its color choices, but also for its reasonable
Macadam driveways come in a variety of colors and
stone sizes, provide good traction on icy roadways, and require minimal
maintenance. It lacks the longevity of concrete or asphalt, but
can be rejuvenated every 6-10 years with a new coat of liquid asphalt
and different stone color at a reasonable cost. Learn
Stone Driveways Stone driveways are a bit crude, the stone can
move so much, that maintenance can be an ongoing problem.
Stone can be purchased in a variety of sizes and
color, and may be practical for large applications. They should
always be applied on a good solid gravel base and never exceed 2"- 4"
Stone, when used as a driveway, will often end up
in your garage, and make a great item for kids to throw through a
window. This is probably why it is not allowed in many cities as
a driveway material.
Stone driveways are seen more in rural
applications where the driveways are so long, it wouldn't be practical
to use concrete or asphalt.
Maintenance is constant, always in need of
re-grading and weed control. Stone driveways are often lined with
a border to help retain the material.
Gravel Driveways Gravel driveways are the least expensive driveways.
However every driveway is made of gravel and then
covered with the many choices listed above.
In a way, everyone has a gravel driveway with a
finish on top. Gravel driveways unfinished, do hold very well if
they are not on a steep hill (which rain will wash away eventually) or
in a low spot, always under water.
The best gravel to leave exposed for a long time
is R.A.P. (recycled asphalt product), a great product on any
driveway. It costs less because it is a recycled blend of crushed
asphalt, crushed concrete and crushed brick.
I have found it to be a great base for paving or
to leave exposed. The product holds very well in rain and snow
and is very durable. Water seems to penetrate it well and it does
not turn to mud very easily (as will the more expensive gravel with
Gravel driveways are only as good as the gravel
used. Some rivers gravel are very sandy and get very sloppy in
rain and don't compact well. Most good compact able gravel's are
man-made and called processed gravel.
Some processed gravel's are more expensive than
R.A.P. and do not hold up to rain and snow as well. Most
processed gravel's contain a clay mix which has great compacting
features but clay gets soupy when wet.
If you have a large driveway project and money is
issue, I suggest you start with a good solid gravel base of R.A.P.
leaving it exposed for a year or more until you can afford the desired
It will cost you a little bit more to have just
gravel installed for now and having it finished later, but it will
break up the cost and have time to fully settle and serve its
purpose. You can also do your driveway project in stages.
If you have a very large driveway, finish one small section at a time,
step by step to fit your budget!
Thanks for laying out the comparisons for all
the different driveway applications! It makes more sense
now! Hopefully when I get some estimates on MY driveway project,
I won't faint from sticker-shock.