Answers to 10 Essential Asphalt Driveway FAQs

Answers to 10 Essential Asphalt Driveway FAQs

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Asphalt driveways are a popular choice among homeowners due to their affordability, durability, and ease of maintenance. Whether you're looking to install an asphalt driveway or want to know how to maintain it, this blog post will answer your most essential questions about asphalt driveways.

1. How much does an asphalt driveway cost?


The cost of an asphalt driveway can vary greatly depending on the size of the area that needs paving and any additional features you may have in mind. An average-sized driveway of 500 square feet (25' x 20') will usually cost $2,500 - $5,000 for installation. Of course, the more intricate the design, the higher the price tag. It's best to get several quotes from local asphalt contractors before deciding.


2. What is the distinction between resurfacing and sealing my driveway?


The primary distinction is that resurfacing/rehabilitation is a structural repair extending the life of your asphalt surface. It comprises mending (if necessary) and resurfacing the whole surface with a fresh hot bituminous asphalt overlay of 12" to 3". Sealcoating is similar to painting your house because it is not a structural repair. The seal coat preserves and prolongs the life of your asphalt but does not cure structural faults. As a result, seal coating is far less expensive than resurfacing your driveway.


3. Can I obtain asphalt in colour other than black or grey?


Almost all asphalt is black. When contractors mix aggregates (stone) with heated asphalt cement, the mass of the material turns black. As the asphalt oxidises, the covering on the aggregates wear away, revealing the aggregate's natural colour. If the asphalt factory employs a light-coloured asphalt, this might result in a 'greyish' hue.


4. Why do various patches of asphalt appear to have distinct textures?


Asphalt comprises 95% different-sized particles and 5% black asphalt cement. While all of the mixes we utilise are state certified, the look and attributes of the mixes from any of the asphalt factories will differ. It is natural for the surface roughness of asphalt to vary between loads and in various parts of a paved surface.


5. Why shouldn't I pave my driveway in extreme winter weather?


Asphalt is heated to around 325° F when mixed at the factory. It should be a minimum of 250° when loaded into a truck, conveyed to the construction site, and placed on your project to allow for adequate compacting. The temperature of the ambient air and the temperature of the ground both have an impact on how long the asphalt is 'workable' and can be effectively compacted. It can take many hours on a hot summer day to as little as 10 minutes on a crisp October morning.


6. What should I do to keep my driveway's borders from cracking?


Your driveway's margins, or shoulders, are among  the most susceptible regions. If you put a lot of weight on the edge (for example, by driving your car or lawn mower straight up to it), it might crack or break off, so it needs to be adequately maintained. We try to alleviate the issue by forming a 'bevelled edge' on the side of the drive at a 45° angle. Once the project finishes, you may assist by putting seeded topsoil against the finishing height of the asphalt.


7. Is there an ecologically friendly way to resurface my asphalt driveway?


The word "ecologically friendly" can be interpreted in various ways. However, some asphalt is more environmentally friendly than others. On special projects, professional asphalt contractors use a foamed asphalt stabilised base (FASB) product for the base asphalt. It is manufactured from recycled asphalt pavement (RAP) aggregates in a cold mix process.


8. Can I resurface my old concrete driveway with asphalt?


Yes, it is possible if the concrete has not degraded much, but there is a catch. Concrete contains expansion joints, and as it moves, it reflects up through the asphalt and cracks. The asphalt driveway contractors can lay a paving cloth over these joints to slow the cracking, but it will eventually show through. The option is to dig the entire concrete roadway and rebuild it from the ground up, but this is costly.


9. What are some advantages of asphalt?


It is one of the most popular materials for driveways because of its affordability and long lifespan—it can last up to 20 years with proper maintenance! Its dark surface also absorbs heat which helps reduce snow and ice accumulation in cold climates. Additionally, asphalt is easy to repair or replace if needed since it can be melted down and re-laid without causing too much disruption or mess. 


10. What can I do about my driveway's poor drainage?


As a point of reference, excellent drainage necessitates at least a 2% fall for water to run off correctly. In layman's terms, this implies that the driveway's slope (angle) should have a 14" decrease for every foot of pavement. For example, a 10-foot wide strip of asphalt should slope to 12" to allow water to drain off appropriately. Many driveways lack this level of slope and water puddles as a result. There are several options for dealing with this, including drains, swales, and curbs. Ponding water is expected in locations with less than a 2% fall.


Schedule a Driveway Appointment with Roadseal Civil Contractors.


Asphalt driveways are an excellent option for those looking for a durable and affordable solution for their home's outdoor spaces. With proper installation and maintenance, they can last up to 20 years without needing significant repairs! Knowing how much they cost, what advantages they offer, and how to maintain them are all essential information when deciding whether an asphalt driveway is suitable. Hopefully, this blog post answered all your important questions! Also, if you have more questions, get in touch with our Road Seal Civil Contractors experts and let us help you immediately! 

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