If you’re creating, replacing or repairing your driveway in Glasgow, Asphalt is likely to be one of the materials you’re considering using. Here we compare Asphalt to concrete as a driveway surface.

Durability & price

A well installed asphalt surface will perform much like concrete but is a step up in terms of durability but at a lower price point making it a highly desirable choice. Generally, Asphalt driveways are around half the cost of a concrete driveway.

Safety

The nature of Asphalt provides grip, and is much more resilient to frost. Concrete being hard, smooth and almost impermeable to water, it can become an ice rink during our cold winter months. During heavy rain, a concrete surface can cause slips, especially on areas of incline or run off slopes to drainage. Asphalt provides slip resistance during these frequent conditions, or even more suited alternative, a fully SUDS compatible resin driveway installation in Glasgow.

Maintenance

An Asphalt driveway can be re-sealed every five years, and if installed correctly first-time round, can be completely re-surfaced without any excavation required to upgrade your driveway. Whilst concrete is relatively maintenance free, cracking and patching must be maintained.

However, because Asphalt is a petroleum product it is more flexible than concrete and is much less likely to crack. Concrete can be more likely to need periodic repair, given that the climate in Scotland means that we are in a freeze-thaw cycle for several months a year.

Asphalt can also get hot in the summer – but it won’t be hot enough to do any damage to your car or footwear.

Installation

The main components of the blacktop that is used on most asphalt driveways are rock, sand and asphalt cement, which is a tar-like petroleum product. You may know it as Tarmac – but this is actually an Asphalt brand name.

When installing your new driveway, it will have four to eight-inch layer of compacted crushed stone, gravel or sand as a solid draining base, with two or three inches of hot asphalt which gets compacted by a rolling machine. It is fast drying and can be used within 24 hours of installation. By contrast, poured concrete driveways must cure for seven days before it can be used and can be prone to damage in that time, if not left properly.

Longevity

A well installed Asphalt driveway will typically last between 12 and 20 years, depending on the quality of the installation, climate, usage and maintenance.

A poured concrete driveway can typically last up to 30 years, but this really depends on how long you can put up with a patched up tired looking surface! After all, you can use an asphalt or concrete driveway forever, so how long it lasts is often a question of aesthetics. In Scotland trying to keep a driveway safe, free of snow and ice when it has been patched up can be difficult.

Choosing an Asphalt Contractor

Asphalt driveways are usually installed by contractors who specialize in Asphalt because it involves very specialized equipment and techniques. There are many fly-by-night operations around – but they will generally do a poor job and although you might save money short-term, in the longer term it could cost you much more. There has been a rise in landscape gardeners, groundworkers and fencers having a go at driveway surfacing.

These contractors generally cut corners with the granular base and use below par products that look good when laid but simply aren’t built to last. You can end up with problems such as poor drainage and surface water, cracks and an uneven surface.

Our highly qualified team industry experts in Glasgow including fully qualified civil engineers and surfacing personnel have been members of the institute of Asphalt technology for over 40 years. If you would like a no obligation quote from Roadlay, talk to us today. We’d love to hear from you!