The Driveway Paving Process: Here's How It Works

The Driveway Paving Process: Here’s How It Works

A clean, smooth driveway improves your home’s curb appeal. It impacts home value as well. 

When upgrading or replacing such a vital element of your home, you should take your time. The driveway paving process takes more than a day. It begins with recognizing that you must act and doesn’t end until the driveway is cured or sealed.

This overview of the driveway paving process helps you understand the entire process and what you can expect along the way. 

Assess your Needs

It doesn’t matter if you are planning a new driveway or replacing an existing driveway, the driveway paving process begins with an assessment of your needs. 

How you use your driveway, your willingness to perform maintenance, and your budget are key factors in the needs assessment process.

Is your driveway simply a surface to get from the street to the interior of the garage? Will you use the driveway to store an RV or park heavy equipment? Do you need a smooth and safe surface for children to play ball, ride bikes, skate, or do other outdoor play?

How do you feel about driveways that need sealing every few years? 

Do you have an extra long driveway or a steep driveway? Steep driveways have unique considerations (read about the best materials for steep Long Island driveways). Long driveways also present challenges (read about picking the best paving materials for long driveways). 

Do You Need Drainage Correction?

If water doesn’t properly drain from your driveway, it will shorten the life of your driveway and result in increased maintenance costs.

Rain or snow that lingers on your driveway can penetrate the surface. Freezing and thawing cycles reduce the integrity of the paving product. 

If water collects next to your driveway and erodes the driveway base, it can lead to cracking or failure of the paved surface. 

Part of the driveway paving process includes the assessment of site drainage. The slope from the middle of the driveway to the sides and the gradient from the driveway top to the bottom should be large enough to direct water away.

 If drainage needs improvement this should be corrected before the new driveway paving. French drains, perforated pipes, and grading can all improve drainage. 

Pick a Paving Material

Based on the assessment of your needs, your tolerance for maintenance, and your budget, you’ll need to pick the best paving material for your Long Island driveway. The most common paving materials for Long Island driveways are as follows:


Asphalt is popular for its flexibility. That allows it to withstand our freeze and thaw cycles in the winter. It lasts about 15 years or more with proper maintenance. It does require sealing every few years. It is a moderately priced paving material. 

Poured Concrete

Poured concrete offers a smooth surface and long-lasting durability. However, it is expensive. But it is the longest-lasting driveway paving material. A properly poured concrete driveway can last 30 to 50 years. There is little maintenance involved. 


Gravel is an inexpensive paving material for Long Island driveways. However, it isn’t well-suited for steep driveways or long driveways that need mechanical plowing. The gravel must be replenished every few years.

Oil and Stone

Oil and stone offer the affordability of gravel with the added durability of asphalt. A layer of gravel is compacted and treated with hot liquid bitumen to fix the pebbles. Oil and stone cost more than gravel and less expensive than asphalt. It’s not an easy surface to plow, and it’s not smooth enough for roller skating. 

Get Quotes and Select a Paving Contractor

Once you know what you need and your preferred paving materials, it is time to start getting quotes and evaluating paving contractors

Don’t pick a paving contractor based on price alone. Always beware of lowball quotes, as additional charges are soon to follow.   Get references and look at photos.   Reputable paving contractors like PALERMO PAVING will be happy to provide these. 

During the selection process, evaluate how well the potential contractors communicate. It’s a good bet that a contractor that doesn’t return phone calls or emails during the quotation process won’t be communicative during the paving process either. 

Prepare for Paving Day

Once you’ve selected a paving contractor and signed a contract, a day will be set to perform the work. Depending on the size and complexity of the paving job, it may wrap up in one day, or it may take several days. The contractor will communicate with you in advance.

When the workday arrives, get your property ready for the paving crew. Place a trash receptacle for any debris from workers. Sandwich wrappers and empty water bottles must go somewhere. The easier you make it to discard the trash appropriately, the cleaner your property will remain.

Find an alternative place to park your cars. You can’t use your driveway!

Make room for work trucks and equipment. Talk to neighbors and ensure the paving crew has a place to park. 

Understand What Comes Next

After the paving job is complete, is this the end of the process?

For example, if you have a poured concrete driveway, do you know how long concrete curing takes? When can you use the driveway?

If you have an asphalt driveway installed, understand when the driveway can accept foot traffic, when you can park vehicles, and when you can store an RV on the driveway.

Does your new driveway need to be sealed? When should sealing be performed?  Will the driveway contractor contact you to schedule sealing, or is this a different job? 

You should also understand what maintenance is necessary. Can your new driveway be cleared with a mechanical plow, or must it be shoveled by hand?

Surviving the Driveway Paving Process

Making it through the driveway paving process and ending up with the intended results is much easier when you work with a trusted paving contractor. 

PALERMO PAVING has been paving Long Island driveways for 58 years. As a family-owned and operated business, we work hard to earn your trust. It’s an honor to be trusted with paving the driveway at your home or the parking lot at your business. 

Contact us to get a quote or discuss your driveway paving needs.

About the Author PALERMO PAVING

PALERMO PAVING is a family-owned-and-operated Long Island paving company. As such, we have a vested interest in our work. This translates into your paving project being done correctly and professionally. We pride ourselves in our expertise in paving, as well as our dedication to honesty and treating all customers with the care they deserve.

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