Whether you’re making a new home or want to change the damaged driveway of your existing home, this question must have come to your mind!
Concrete vs. Asphalt – which one should I choose?
Concrete and Asphalt, both materials are two most used materials when it comes to driveways. You’ll not regret choosing any of these materials to make the driveway, but which one goes past the other?
In this article, you will get a clear and complete idea of the pros and cons of these two materials. After reading this, you’ll be able to determine whether to go with asphalt or concrete!
Stay with us…
1. Concrete for Flexible Color Options
When you are looking for a material that can be colored matching with your home, concrete is the perfect shot. You can make patterns, use a brush to have a textured surface, or even color the concrete surface with almost any color available in the market.
But on the other hand, asphalt is not recommended when it comes to color flexibility. You shouldn’t use additional colors in the asphalt since it will not stick to the surface well. Even if you apply paints on the asphalt, you’ll see that color is coming out of the surface after a few days.
2. High Heat vs. Cold
Heat is the enemy of asphalt, and the cold is the enemy of the concrete. But wait, to harm your driveway, it must be scorching heat or freezing temperature.
So, you should pick the material according to the climate condition of your area. If your area of residence is prone to freezing cold, avoid concrete driveway. In freezing temperature, concrete tends to crack and you’ll need frequent patching for a smooth driveway.
On the other hand, high heat makes the asphalt vulnerable to expansion and contraction that eventually leads to a cracked driveway.
3. Asphalt is Good for Hiding Stains
As you already know, asphalt is dark grey or black. So, any stain on the surface will be hidden under the blackish color of the asphalt.
But when it comes to a concrete driveway, you’ll see each drop of engine oil or any other stain on the surface with the naked eye.
4. Asphalt Requires Frequent Maintenance
Asphalt bonding is not so durable like concrete. So, you need to reseal the asphalt surface every two to five years, depending upon the weather condition and usage.
But concrete requires less attention when it comes to maintenance. Concrete driveways remain smooth for years without any maintenance works.
5. Concrete Repair is Harder than Asphalt
Although you need to repair asphalt frequently, the repair work is pretty simple to do and does not require much workforce.
But you will need a significant amount of workforce to patch or resurface the concrete. New concrete does not stick to the surface well without concrete bonding adhesives. On top of that, you need to clean the surface really well with a pressure washer and vacuum cleaners to have a perfect repair.
6. Concrete is More Durable than Asphalt
If you are looking for the most durable driveway materials available, you must make a concrete driveway. A well-made concrete driveway can sustain around 30-40 years without any major damage to the surface. But asphalt is not that durable!
You’ll get around 15 to 25 years of peaceful sleep with your asphalt driveway and then, you will need to repair the surface more frequently and at times, you will feel like replacing the whole driveway.
7. Asphalt Cures Faster than Concrete
If you are concern about using the surface within a few moments of making it, you must go with asphalt. Asphalt is almost immediately ready to use where concrete requires at least 48 hours to cure externally and a week for curing fully.
So, your concrete driveway will be available for human traffic after 24 hours and vehicle traffic after a week of application.
8. Asphalt is More Affordable than Concrete
Now comes the main point! What is the most affordable among concrete and asphalt? Asphalt is certainly more affordable than concrete.
Although the raw materials and application of asphalt require less from your pocket in the first instance, you will end up losing a lot of money in the repair works in the asphalt driveway.
On the other hand, concrete requires a lot of money in the first place but requires almost nothing from your wallet for around a decade after the making of it.
So, Which One Wins between Asphalt and Concrete?
I do not see a clear winner in the contest of concrete vs asphalt. Concrete is more durable and open to color options when the asphalt is not open to additional colors and requires frequent maintenance.
The key thing to pick the material for me is the weather condition. So, remember the rule- heat is the enemy of asphalt and cold is the enemy of the concrete.
Although we have described almost all aspects of the concrete vs asphalt debate, we are open to help. If you need any further assistance, feel free to leave a comment below.