Your driveway gets daily use, so you want to make sure it's the best that it can be. That's why, when you're considering a new driveway, you should choose asphalt. Thanks to the many benefits of an asphalt driveway, you can count on this material to stay strong and attractive for years to come.
Asphalt Boasts Natural Flexibility
Have you ever watched, cringing, as a guest pulled into your driveway in an enormous truck? It's hard not to imagine what sort of damage such a large vehicle might be inflicting on your driveway.
With an asphalt driveway, you needn't worry much about this problem. Asphalt is made of aggregate that's mixed into a petroleum-based binder. You can learn more about the manufacturing process in this video:
Asphalt is placed on a strong, properly laid base. Therefore, it has a bit of give that allows it to hold up when subjected to an excessively heavy load now and then.
Asphalt Will Get You Through the Winter
The cold months can be hard on driveways, but asphalt has what it takes to make it through this season.
Freezing and Thawing
Winter is infamous for putting driveways through a freeze-thaw cycle as temperatures plummet below freezing and then creep back up time and again. Water in and under the pavement expands and contracts each time. This can put intense pressure on the driveway material.
Fortunately, asphalt is, by nature, quite flexible. This flexibility can help it withstand the pressures of freezing and thawing.
Snow and Ice
Of course, no matter how strong your driveway is, it's likely to end up with plenty of snow and ice on top of it. Keeping your driveway clear can be a challenge.
If your preferred method of dealing with snow and ice is to sprinkle rock salt on it, you'll be glad to know that asphalt driveways hold up to this chemical treatment better than concrete ones do.
Furthermore, there's a chance that you won't have to put down quite as much snow-removal treatment. Thanks to the dark color of asphalt, the snow that falls on asphalt driveways sometimes melts more quickly than the snow on concrete driveways.
Asphalt Is Affordable
When you're in the market for a new driveway, there's a good chance that you'll find yourself trying to decide between concrete and asphalt. While both materials have their benefits, if you're concerned about staying within your budget, asphalt is usually the way to go.
The specific cost of installing an asphalt driveway can depend on a number of factors. These include your geographic area, the current market for the necessary materials and how much preparation work must be done on your property before the asphalt can be laid.
However, as a general rule, you can typically expect that asphalt will be less expensive than concrete, sometimes less than half the price.
Asphalt Stays Attractive with Occasional Maintenance
Every few years, an asphalt driveway will benefit from a sealcoating treatment. In this process, a protective layer is spread over your driveway. It serves to fill in tiny cracks; this helps to keep debris and water out of the nooks and crannies of your surface.
Sealcoating also gives your driveway a rich black finish. This is how asphalt surfaces look when they're brand new, but they fade to gray over time. Sealcoating brings back the original color.
Now and then, you may notice cracks that are too big to be taken care of with a sealcoating treatment. Fortunately, crack filling will do the trick for larger breaks or holes in your asphalt.
The material used for filling cracks in asphalt won't blend perfectly with the surrounding area. However, that's a much better alternative than letting unsightly cracks continue to spread across your driveway!
When you've had your driveway for a number of years, it may be time for a more-involved maintenance treatment. That's when you can have your asphalt driveway resurfaced. The top layer of the driveway is removed and replaced. The supportive lower layers are strengthened and may require repairs in some areas before a new top layer is placed on them.
Resurfacing is almost like getting a brand-new driveway without paying full price. Not only does resurfacing restore a driveway's dark color, but it also gets rid of cracks and patches and extends the life of the surface.
Asphalt Lasts for Years
When properly cared for, you can count on your asphalt driveway to be an investment that will serve you well for years to come. The average lifespan of an asphalt driveway is about 15 years.
The maintenance required to get this sort of lifespan out of your driveway is minimal. You may want to sealcoat the asphalt every one to two years and fill cracks as needed. Resurfacing may need to happen every five years or so.
One great thing to note about asphalt is that, even after you remove old asphalt from your driveway, it can continue to live on. In fact, almost 100 million tons of asphalt are recycled in the United States every year. Recycled asphalt can be used for driveways, roads and other surfaces.
Strength, flexibility, easy maintenance, and the many other benefits of an asphalt driveway ensure that this affordable surface will enhance the curb appeal of your property for years to come.
If you're ready to get started with the asphalt paving process for your residential or commercial driveway, contact us at Palermo Paving today.