Alternative to asphalt

Old 03-22-15, 06:35 AM
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Alternative to asphalt

My asphalt driveway has issues and needs replacing in many areas. It is prob 100 ft long with double wide turnaround and garage area, so last estimate i got was abt $7000 for new asphalt.
Anyone live up north and have ideas for something less expensive? I'm going to contact a concrete products co and price concrete sections, then price paver cost. A smooth surface is nice to have when i blow snow.
Old 03-22-15, 06:38 AM
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Hope you will be sitting down for those estimates if the asphalt seemed high. First born child and annuities come to mind
Old 03-22-15, 06:46 AM
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Concrete won't last nearly as long as asphalt in the north. Any money that you are able to save up front with concrete will be lost over time. Pavers may be an option though.
Old 03-22-15, 07:03 AM
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I have to disagree with concrete not lasting as long. It is all in how the surface is prepared and the quality of the concrete job that will determine how well it lasts.

About 15 years ago when one of our highways were twinned, the government paved the new twinned section with concrete, and it has held up way better than any asphalt road.

Concrete will be significantly more expensive, although one plus is that you can do it in sections as you can afford it without it looking like patchwork when it is done.
Old 03-22-15, 07:11 AM
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Not sure what your asphalt issues are, but it may be those issues and not the asphalt that needs correcting. Our frost creates havoc when less than extreme measures have been taken to prepare the base for your driveway. All too often it is, at best, a foot of gravel over whatever the original soils were and a topping of asphalt.

What are the current issues?

Old 03-22-15, 07:52 AM
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Asphalt would be cheaper than either concrete or pavers so expect it to be expensive. Pavers would be the most expensive which is why you only see paver driveways with higher end homes. About the only thing cheaper than asphalt is having a stone drive.
Old 03-22-15, 07:57 AM
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I have to agree with Bud. If the ground and base is not properly prepared asphalt or concrete will eventually have problems.

As far as cost goes it all depends on the price of oil. Recently concrete has been the lesser cost, at least in my area.

Advantages to asphalt (in snow areas) is that it's easy to shovel and blow.Ice and snow melt quickly once a small patch is cleared to the sun. No expansion gaps to catch on shovel or blower. No heaving of sections. Easy to clean and pretty much impervious to salt. Easy to cover stains when sealing it.
Disadvantages... Not as good looking as concrete. In hot summer, sun it will "flow" and leave troughs if vehicle is left parked in same spot over and over. Will need sealing every year or two or three depending on one's sense of maintenance. If edges are not supported then cracking and breakage occure.

Disadvantages of concrete. Eventually it will crack! No matter how well it is prepared. If it chips or cracks it looks like hell. Shovels and snow blowers will catch at the expansion joints or and heaved area. Snow has a way of sticking to it that asphalt does not. Even if exposed to sun the melting does not expand quickly. Any patching will most likely be off color. A devil to get oil stains out of.
Advantages...Looks good when new. Ages evenly and always appear to be solid if not cracked or broken. Will support heavy vehicles parked in the same place without any problem. Withstands dropped items or average pounding without denting during hot summer season. Won't track tar or dirt into house.

In my opinion I'll take the asphalt because during those clod miserable winter days of shoveling or blowing I could care less about the summer months. All I want to do is get that damn snow and ice off and asphalt it easy to do that with.
Old 03-22-15, 09:50 AM
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thanks... the drive is 30 yrs old, and tire ruts are pronounced, requiring removing the drive and putting down new gravel and compacting... several feet of asphalt have also broken up into pieces which are too large to patch.
Old 03-22-15, 06:14 PM
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Unless you're willing to go with something like gravel, asphalt is going to be your cheapest solid surface.

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