Brick Driveway Cost Estimation
Estimating the costs for a brick driveway requires the proper measurement of dimensions, calculating the number of bricks and the amount of other materials required for the foundation and edges. You follow this with the pricing of the various paver options along with the supplemental components such as sand, gravel, mortar and plastic edging. No cost estimation would be complete without factoring in labor costs. Assuming you will do this job yourself, you will spend nothing on labor, but you should certainly estimate the amount of time you need for the work.
The first part of the cost estimation involves measuring the size of the brick driveway. This will both determine your work area and help you calculate the number of bricks and other materials you will need to purchase. First determine the square footage of the driveway by multiplying the width by the length in feet. Thus, a space 9 feet wide by 30 feet in length equals 270 square feet.
Calculate Brick Number and Cost
Next you will need to calculate the number of brick pavers you will need for the job. There are numerous brick styles that come in a multitude of sizes. A common mortarless paver is 4 inches wide by 8 inches long by 2 inches deep. The standard brick paver is 3 ¾ inches wide by 8 inches long by 2 ¼ inches deep. Decide what type of brick paver you wish to use and go from there. If you will be mortaring between the joints, you must factor in 3/8 inch between each brick lengthwise and widthwise. When laying bricks without mortar, you can forgo that aspect. You also must include the plastic edging in your calculations. Using the above number as the example, a 9 x 30 foot area, if using the mortarless paver at 4 inches wide will require 27 bricks per row (3 per foot multiplied by 9). Lengthwise, 45 bricks will fit in this space per column.
30 (ft) x 12 inches = 360 inches ÷ 8 (inches per brick) = 45
Thus, you will need 1,215 4x8 inch mortarless bricks for the entire space.
The calculations are bit more complex if you factor in the distance needed for mortar joints. For a 9 x 30-foot area, given standard bricks that are 3 ¾ wide and 3/8 inch per mortar joint, the calculations are as follows:
9 feet x 12 inches = 108 inches wide ÷ 3¾ inches = approximately 29 3¾-inch bricks. However, given 27 spaces between the bricks at 3/8 inch each, that equals 10.125 inches that must be reserved for mortar. So, 108 inches minus 10.125 inches equals 97.875 available inches. That divided by 3¾ inches (per brick) equals just over 26 bricks. Lengthwise, 16.5 inches must be held for mortar, thus 2 bricks must be subtracted from the 45 you’ll use without mortar. Thus:
43 bricks per column x 26 bricks per row = 1,118 total bricks with mortar.
Given that bricks range between $.50 and $3.00 per brick, it could cost you any where between about $500 and $3,600 just for the bricks.
Gravel and Sand
You will also need to purchase both gravel and sand by the cubic yard for the foundation. A 3-inch deep, 270 square foot area requires 2.5 cubic yards of gravel and .83 cubic yards of sand (at 1 inch deep). Gravel costs anywhere from $9.00 to $15.00 per cubic yard delivered. Sand is comparably priced.
The driveway will also require plastic edging to surround the entire area. An area 9 x 30 feet needs about 80 feet of edging. The cost of mortar must be included as well (if you are using it). You can use the above examples to calculate the material need for your brick driveway project. Whatever its size, the same principles apply. Prices of brick, gravel and sand may vary with location, but once you have made the necessary calculations, determining total cost is a simple matter of multiplying.