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What Is The Longest Lasting Driveway Material

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  • 28-09-2022
What Is The Longest Lasting Driveway Material

What is the longest lasting driveway material? This article examines the options available for driveway materials to help you find the right driveway for your home.

What Driveway Lasts The Longest?

We likely all want our driveways to last as long as physically possible so that we don't have to waste time and money on costly repairs or instalments of new materials. Durability is one of the essential factors to look for to provide a good foundation for your smooth drive to prevent it from getting tarnished from frequent use and weather damage.

There are a vast few driveway surface solutions to choose from in the UK, many of which have advantages and disadvantages. Suppose you find yourself struggling to find the right material to suit your home or property.

In that case, we encourage you to read further, and we'll present you with a wide range of driveway options that can withstand various circumstances and endure numerous years of normal usage per square foot.

The many suitable paving materials to consider for a beautiful and secure foundation include small stones, glass, asphalt, imprinted concrete and brick pavers. Here are the following types of driveways and solid surface materials with their durability level. 

Asphalt: Asphalt driveways are fantastic at withstanding a wide range of damage from harsh weather conditions; you'll likely get around 20 years of use on your driveway stand. That's not an incredibly long time compared to a material like concrete; however, if you're a stickler for high maintenance, your porous asphalt will stay with you for many years.

Concrete: Concrete driveways are one of the most reliable choices for those homes searching for driveway surfaces. It is known to last far longer than other materials and compared to asphalt, it only requires a minimal maintenance level over its lifespan. If you care for them properly, you'll find that your concrete driveway will last approximately 30 years.

Tarmac: Tarmac driveways are another popular choice, lasting around 20 years or more. Ensure you keep up with the necessary repairs and regular maintenance over the years, and you'll find you won't have to pay extensive costs for a time-consuming replacement.

Resin: These are popular choices for those with priorities leaning more towards having an aesthetically pleasing front, alongside temperature durability, as they are stunning-looking surfaces. Resin driveways can be incredibly porous, which is great for drainage during wet weather and highly permeable once installed correctly to adhere to the SUDS compliance regulations and be suitable for moderate weather as well as harsh conditions.

Gravel: Gravel driveways look neat, tidy and versatile, yet it is also a relatively low-maintenance flooring choice. Much like concrete, it can last approximately three decades or more.

Brick: Brick driveways and pavers are incredibly straightforward to install and therefore don't require a great deal of time to set or cure. It offers a lifespan of approximately 25 years with top-quality individual block paving and proper installations for a stable surface. Brick or block-paved driveways can be both a practical and aesthetic choice.

Recycled Glass: Glass is gradually becoming more popular through production with many homeowners, especially in our current times of trying to be eco-friendly. Recycled glass aggregate can provide customers with plenty of years of resilience and excellent durability. 

Finding the Right Driveway for Your Home

You're likely spending days and nights thinking about the material of your driveway surface, yet we recommend spending a little time considering the best option for you and your environment.

Much like everything else in your home or property that has extensive ways of appearing in your home the way they do, there are far more methods of paving a garage path than you may perceive.

You can skillfully update the overall curb appeal of your home and alter its entire appearance by choosing a different kind of driveway surface than what you had previously.

Planning permission is a grey area when plotting out and installing a new durable driveway installation; if your property is on the main road or a road leading to the motorway, it could cause some disruption; we recommend contacting your local authorities or planning consultants for further information. On the opposing side, you could have a specific style of pathway material that could be causing your home or property to appear outdated or drab.

Contact your local landscaping professionals today for advice on the best material for you.

Here is a comprehensive list of the most common surface materials that you may choose from depending on your style and requirements:

 Concrete driveways

Concrete is the most familiar and oldest used material for driveways. They are most common in rural areas or outside suburban households.

They opt for such surface flooring because of its long-lasting aesthetic features and practically maintenance-free it is if properly installed.

However, whilst most concrete has more benefits than negatives, it can stain easily, so if you were to work on your car on the driveway, spilt oil will stain and cause swirling patterns to appear randomly on your pathway.

For those opting for concrete and living in colder areas of the UK, you'll find yourself frequently de-icing with rock salt; however, this may cause your concrete to break down over time.

Concrete is an incredibly low-maintenance option, so we recommend using it if you're searching for a surface material of low effort. 

 What Is The Longest Lasting Driveway Material?

 Asphalt driveways

Asphalt driveways are another one of the more popular driveway materials created from rock, sand and asphalt cement. Often these driveways are offered in a simple black colour, as it is most frequently used on motorways and roads. 

However, this material is often stamped out with various designs that allow the roads to stand out to those driving. Professional contractors and installers can make it in various colours and shades.

Asphalt is a common material due to its relatively cheap cost when getting it installed, yet you must be aware that it will require plenty of maintenance as it can show cracks frequently. Asphalt is excellent as it is the cheapest option if you have a hefty drive to cover. 

 Gravel driveways

Such driveways are curated from loose gravel, often pouring into a tight barrier that allows it to stay contained.

Gravel can be a fantastic-looking choice for those with long winding driveways in the countryside and extensive landscaping.

It can be a pricey thing to behold as the loose gravel is easily shaken up, meaning you'll have to replace it every few years and do maintenance by raking it up to keep it as neat as possible.

However, they provide quick installation for those who want the job done as quickly as possible.

Properties with large driveways, lawns or homes in rural areas may receive all the benefits from the appearance of gravel driveways. 

Gravel Driveways - Longest Lasting Driveway Material

 Glass driveways

Glass driveways are much like mosaics of thick glass sealed with resin, unlike thin sheets of the stuff.  Glass driveways come with their own pros; for example, many manufacturers utilise recycled glass as it saves it from being thrown into landfills.

Another benefit is the creativity it offers; you'll often have wiggle room to select the colour scheme, as it is essentially many colours of glass blended together to create a mosaic design. It doesn't require much maintenance once installed due to the resin-bonded material involved in the mixture to make it SUDS compliant.

 Cobblestone driveways

Cobblestone or paving stones offers somewhat of an old-world, traditional appearance compared to brick layers; however, we cannot promise an old-fashioned price tag to go with it.

Well-installed cobbles or natural stones will last you decades, and sometimes wear and tear can create a more authentic appearance.

However, we'd still encourage you to get it maintained where necessary in case you ever trip when walking instead of driving.

Upscale neighbourhoods or historical areas with period properties benefit the most from the aesthetic value of a cobblestone driveway or those with short drives. 

Cobblestone Driveways - Longest Lasting Driveway Material

 Green driveways

Another more environmentally friendly option is a green driveway, which is offered in two shapes. One is an entire surface of grass paving over a base of plastic that allows it to keep its shape whilst being easier to drive over and park on, and the second option is a grid of concrete designed with small holes for grass to peek through to provide more greenery.

Unlike other paver driveways, its biggest downfall is the condition and health of the grass; you'll have to ensure that the grass stays alive and isn't overrun with weeds, meaning the maintenance costs will add to its overall price.

The best locations for a green drive include climates where grass frequently grows, so if you live in a mainly green area of the UK, you may be able to get away with this to make it more durable. 

 Brick driveways

Brick driveways provide a highly classic feel because brick was commonly used throughout ancient times while incredibly hard-wearing.

In creating the drive, installers will place a base down with a solid perimeter, putting bricks layered across, much like how houses of bricks are structured.

It results in an incredibly timeless appearance adding significant character to the front curb of your home, yet it is often on the more costly side.

As a surface, brick is relatively expensive yet cost-effective, as it can last for decades when installed properly. 

Brick Driveways - Longest Lasting Driveway Material

Why finding the best driveway surface is essential?

When you initially move into a new home or property, there's an exhaustive list of things to do and consider regarding its exterior and interior appearance. The surface material of your driveway may not be at the top of your priority list; however, we recommend noting it down on your list to think about.

A durable, well-designed, and laid drive can offer your property incredible curb appeal and many benefits for your home's aesthetic appeal and the condition of your car over time. As previously mentioned, first impressions are essential, whether you're looking to impress your guests or potential future buyers.

That is why you'll often hear those selling properties harp on the importance of curb appeal. You must strike a balance between the aesthetic value of your home or property and the overall cost according to your budget; however, there are other factors you must consider. For example, one of the most significant aspects to search for when choosing a driveway material is durability.

The UK climate is unpredictable, so it's best to opt for a driveway surface that can withstand plenty of rain, hailstorm, snow, and hot weather during the summer months so that you can ensure the front of your home is ready for whatever the British weather throws. 

Are you considering driveway installation services in Southend and Essex? Contact our block paving specialists today.