Does your driveway need to be replaced? Are you building a new home? Regardless of the reason, if you’re shopping for a new driveway, it’s important to get to know all of your options and understand what makes some better than others. If you want a driveway that requires minimal maintenance, looks great, and will last for decades, you’ve come to the right place. Concrete offers all of these perks and more.
Read on to learn what concrete is and all the ways you can benefit from a concrete driveway.
Concrete: An Overview
Concrete has been a common building material as far back as 6500 BC. In fact, many famous ancient structures in the Middle East are made of an early form of concrete. What’s so great about this material? Why are we still using it several thousand years later? Its long lifespan and ability to bear immense amounts of weight remain unmatched to this day.
Today, cement is most commonly used in construction for:
- Building foundations
A common misconception about concrete is that it’s the same as cement. In reality, cement is just one of three main ingredients that make up concrete. Cement is the binding agent in this recipe, and it usually comes in powder form.
Concrete is made of:
- Aggregate (Gravel, rock, or sand)
This modern version of concrete has truly built the world around us today. It’s a sustainable and durable material used by building and design professionals across the globe.
Ways You’ll Benefit From a Concrete Driveway
Although concrete is used to build all kinds of structures, why does it make a great driveway specifically? After all, there are many other paving materials to choose from. Let’s unpack the six unique perks of a concrete driveway.
Concrete makes for an exceptionally low maintenance driveway. It requires two simple actions:
- Sweep or power wash your driveway once in a while.
- Administer a concrete sealer once per year.
Many people who have or are considering a concrete driveway wonder if sealing concrete is necessary. Particularly in climates like Minnesota’s, where we experience intense freeze and thaw cycles each year, sealing your each year driveway is necessary. If you live in a moderate climate, you may be able to skip a year here and there.
However, the intense temperature fluctuation that we experience in the north causes concrete to expand and contract. Without a yearly seal, your driveway is more likely to crack in the future.
Keep your concrete driveway in perfect condition by using our guide to concrete driveway maintenance.
Although some other materials, like asphalt, have a lower cost upfront, you’ll save money in the long run if you choose concrete. It costs less to maintain, and the lifespan is so much longer than asphalt that the upfront cost difference is irrelevant. Additionally, concrete is so durable that costly issues like potholes or warping are quite rare.
Longevity and Durability
The lifespan of a concrete driveway that is well-maintained is — at a minimum– thirty years. The longevity is also dependent upon installation. Before hiring a company to install your driveway, consult a few different local concrete driveway contractors and ask about their process. A properly installed concrete driveway will last longer than thirty years. What makes a good concrete driveway that will last?
- Create a stable foundation
- Have uniform thickness throughout
- Plan proper water drainage
If you speak with a contractor that doesn’t mention these important items in their installation process, cross them off your list.
Not only does concrete have an impressive lifespan, but it is also insanely durable. Once it has set and dried, it becomes so rigid that it can handle large trucks, heavy loads, boats, RVs, and more. If you have big toys or heavy vehicles that come in and out of your driveway, concrete is the material for you. Concrete can also be installed in huge square slabs instead of one large piece, preventing potholes and other structural problems.
Producing and placing concrete requires less energy than competing materials. It also uses fewer petroleum resources and, because it lasts so long, it consumes less energy in future replacement, repair, and resurfacing cycles.
Concrete is made of limestone, which is one of the most widely available and inexpensive aggregates on the market. Concrete is also recyclable, making it an even greener solution.
Increase Home Value
If you might sell your home someday, a concrete driveway increases your home value in a couple of different ways.
- Kid-Friendly. Concrete is light in color, which means it absorbs a lot less heat from the sun than asphalt. On a hot summer day, your kids are free and play across the yard and driveway without burning their feet.
- Base Value. Because a concrete driveway lasts for so many years and requires so little maintenance, it automatically increases the value of your home.
Most people like the light color and clean lines that concrete provides. However, you can implement colored concrete and concrete driveway designs if you want something more unique.
Talk to your local concrete driveway contractor about adding designs to your driveway.
Get a Concrete Driveway Installed Today
Concrete offers a wide array of benefits. Whether you want a driveway that is eco-friendly or kid-friendly, pleasing to the eye, or pleasing to the bank account, concrete is what you’ve been looking for. It’s also important to note that concrete driveways are required in some neighborhoods that have established aesthetic rules.
If you’re looking for a trusted local contractor, Richfield Blacktop is here for you. We’ve been dedicated to quality work, great prices, and customer satisfaction since 1954. Concrete driveway construction is our specialty, and we have a team of experts ready to work with you to create the perfect driveway for your property. Call us today for a free, no-obligation quote. We encourage all potential customers to shop around so they know that Richfield Blacktop is the best deal in town.