Paving Services

Paving services vary quite widely, including road-building, highway-building, sealcoating, concrete paving, asphalt paving, road rehabilitation, new road construction, striping, marking, and more.

Depending on the application your job requires, pavers may either require concrete pavement or asphalt pavement.

Let’s look at some of the reasons you might invest in paving services for your job.

What Does a Paving Contractor Do?

A paving contractor provides services for constructing and repairing paved surfaces, such as driveways, parking lots, roads, concrete floors, and more. Paving contractors may also perform much larger jobs, such as highways or airport runways.

A paving contractor will typically be hired by a municipal agency, business, or individual for new paving jobs or repairs. There are companies that specialize in commercial or residential work, though you can also find those that perform both types of work depending on the needs of the client. 

A paving contractor will often meet with the business owner or homeowner to discuss the requirements and constraints of the project on hand, providing estimates for the job. 

Asphalt paving services

Asphalt Paving Services

Asphalt paving services are performed by asphalt paving contractors. This kind of work can include jobs such as asphalt maintenance, asphalt repair, asphalt sealcoating, patchin services, and crack sealing. 

Contractors that perform asphalt paving services will often build things such as walkways, parking lots, paths, or driveways. Note that there is a major difference between commercial and residential paving services.

Asphalt maintenance typically includes things like asphalt repair and light cleaning or crack sealing. At one point, asphalt replacement may be required. The timeline for asphalt repair depends on many factors, including the quality of the materials and the climate. 

Asphalt must also go through the sealcoating process to protect it from water, road salt, diesel fuel, gasoline, oil, and more. Sealcoating is a requirement for both residential and commercial properties. To provide a sealcoat for asphalt, paving contractors will use a mixture of asphalt cement or coal tar pitch, spreading it evenly across the surface.

Asphalt repair

When it comes to asphalt repair, there are various methods contractors will use depending on the type of repair required and the conditions. Some of these repair methods include:

  • Cold Patch Asphalt Repair.
  • Asphalt Patch Saw Cut & Removal.
  • Infrared Asphalt Restoration.
  • Asphalt Pavement Skin Patching.

Your paving service should be able to determine the right type of repair needed to make your asphalt look brand new. 

Concrete paving services

Concrete Paving Services

Concrete paving services include paving services and road construction, combining the ability of concrete contractors and road builders to complete the job on hand. Actually, concrete contractors can perform several types of concrete jobs, including building catch basins, curbs, ramps, islands, sidewalks, and more. 

Road builders can repair damaged road surfaces and install new concrete pavement. 

Find out whether concrete or asphalt is a better choice for your particular job in our blog:

Concrete Vs. Asphalt Roads – Which Is the Better Choice?

Brick Paving Services

Brick pavers are one of the best ways to add personality and charm to an existing landscape. For many centuries, Europeans used bricks throughout cities and residential areas. Americans are finally catching onto the trend. 

The beauty of brick pavers is that they can be used for a wide range of applications, including driveways, walkways, patios, and more. 

Flashy brick driveways are great for adding instant curb appeal to the entrance of a home. Plus, there is a wide range of brick pavers to choose from, perfect for coordinating with the colors and overall aesthetic of a home. 

With traditional brick, you can add a sense of colonial charm to your driveway, an elegant way to put the finishing touches on your project. People will often use brick in walkways around flower beds to point visitors in the right direction. From simple stepping stones to interlocking brick pavers, there are many ways to utilize this material to jazz up your home. 

People will oft use brick pavers to create a unique ambiance for their outdoor patios, using simple rows or geometric shape patterns with multi-colored bricks. The possibilities are endless. 

A high quality driveway

Driveway Paving Services

Driveways are very prone to wear and tear, as they are subject to heavy amounts of pressure day after day for many years. When paving a new driveway, it’s important to use high-quality materials and have a reliable and knowledgeable contractor who has performed driveway paving services before. 

There are many different types of materials available when it comes to driveway paving services, including brick pavers, asphalt, concrete, and more. If you’re in the market for the cleanest, hardest, and most cost-effective surface material, then we highly recommend going with asphalt. 

Asphalt is a highly durable choice for crafting a robust driveway without spending tons of money, though if you’re looking to amp up the look of your driveway, we recommend stamped asphalt, even though it will be more expensive. 

Is it Cheaper to Pave or Gravel a Driveway?

Compared to concrete or asphalt, a gravel driveway is far more budget-friendly. The beauty of gravel driveways is that they can also last a long time if you properly maintained them. However, it’s important to make sure your gravel driveway is laid down properly so that there aren’t any lumpy spots or bumps, which can cause drainage issues. 

If you install a driveway and notice that the surface is uneven, you can hire a professional contractor to come and re-level the driveway. 

Find out more about which type of driveway is right for you in our blog:

Gravel Vs. Asphalt Driveway: Which Is Suitable For You?

Is it Cheaper to Pave or Gravel a Driveway?

Final Thoughts

Finding a high-quality paving service is important, whether you’re working on a commercial or residential job. Of course, if you don’t have experience in hiring paving contractors or you don’t have anyone that can provide you with a recommendation, we’re here to help.
Let us help you find the right paving service to get the job done. Get in contact with us at Paving Finder today.

How To Build A Concrete Catch Basin

Catch basins are essential to city infrastructures, collecting water runoff that would otherwise flood the streets.

To build a concrete catch basin, you’ll need to find the right location on your property, make the form out of plywood, run your drainpipe, pour some concrete, stabilize the basin with rebar, and add a metal grate for safety!

If the idea of building a concrete catch basin seems like a daunting task, then keep reading below to see how easy it is to implement water management onto your property!

Tools You’ll Need To Get Started

  • Metal Grate
  • Sand
  • Flat Trowel
  • Small Shovel
  • Concrete Mixing Container
  • Concrete Mixing Hoe
  • Garden Hose
  • Concrete 
  • Rebar
  • Drain Pipe
  • Hammer or Drill
  • Screws or Nails
  • Circular Saw
  • 2×4 Lumber and Plywood
  • Shovel
How To Build A Concrete Catch Basin

Step-By-Step Concrete Catch Basin Building Process

#1 Dig Your Hole

Dig your hole in the appropriate location next to your foundation or on your lawn. You will want to make a two-foot box, meaning the hole will need to be at least 32” wide in both directions. Account for the width of the concrete wall.

#2 Form Your Concrete

Cut your plywood to size and create a box that will act as the interior of your catch basin. To secure your 2×4 lumber on the box’s interior corners, nail or screw the pieces to one another. It’s important that you leave anywhere from four to six inches of space between the edge of the hole and the plywood form, as this is the space that will be the wall of the catch basin.

Of course, if the plan is to build the catch basin adjacent to your home, you will only need to account for three sides in your form. Your house’s foundation will act as the fourth wall.

#3 Install the Drain

Secure your drain pipe in its right place BEFORE pouring your concrete. Your drain pipe should connect at one of the side wall’s bases, connecting to your catch basin. You want it to slow away at a slight angle until it exits at the dry well or curb.

PRO TIP: When trying to determine the height of your drain, make sure to consider how thick your concrete floor will be. Ideally, you’ll want it to be around four to six inches thick, the same as your walls. 

#4 Use Rebar to Reinforce

Arrange rebar in the places where you will pour your concrete. To make sure your rebar is stable, drive it at least four inches deep. You also want to make sure that it isn’t sticking out above the ground. For a sufficient catch basin, you can use a single piece of rebar every eight inches. 

We recommend reading through your local building codes first to ensure the length of your rebar isn’t too long for this particular application.

#5 Pour Your Concrete

Now, the fun part! Pour your concrete, filling the spaces between the hole’s edge and the plywood. Make sure that the concrete is mixed together with the instructions specified on its packaging. 

PRO TIP: While there are many ways to mix concrete, we recommend doing it by hand. It’s the most cost-efficient way unless you want to spend money on hiring a big mixing truck from a concrete company. 

#6 Remove Your Form

Once your concrete has cured, remove your plywood form and any other building materials.

#7 Pour The Bottom

Before pouring your concrete base, add at least three inches of sand to your base. Sand is very helpful in making sure the concrete doesn’t settle in years to come. Once the concrete is poured, smooth it over with a trowel.

#8 Attach Your Grate

Top off your catch basin with a metal grate for safety. You can either build your own metal grate or purchase one pre-made. Make sure that your grate is secure enough that an animal or grown adult could walk on it without fear of falling through. 

How To Build A Concrete Catch Basin

Where Should I Build My Catch Basin?

A catch basin should sit at the lowest point on your property. You want it to be a place where water pools or puddles after a rainstorm. Of course, before that, you’ll want to analyze the foundation of the home

Remember, your home’s foundation will likely be one of the four walls of your catch basin. If the foundation of your home is not in good condition, you could end up diverting water into it, which would be an absolute nightmare. 

As a rule of thumb, you want to find a spot along your home’s perimeter that not only looks aesthetically pleasing but is out of the way of most foot traffic. 

How Large Should My Catch Basin Be?

For most residential properties, a 2×2-foot catch basin should do the trick. The drain should be anywhere from four to six inches. The only reason you’d go larger is if you were building a commercial catch basin. 

If you don’t have serious water management requirements, you may even consider going smaller with a 1×1-foot catch basin. It’s up to you to consider how much rainfall you get along with your roof’s surface area when building a catch basin. 

What Are The Different Types of Residential Catch Basins?

If you’ve done any research prior to stumbling upon this article, you may have seen that there are numerous options for catch basins out there. Let’s take a look at some of the most popular choices for residential catch basins.

  • Plastic Catch Basin: If you’re building a smaller catch basin, plastic is a great option! These types of catch basins are typically made out of PVC or high-density polyethylene.
  • Polymer Concrete: This type of concrete is far more durable than regular concrete, as it uses a unique polymer binder with natural mineral aggregates.
  • Pre-Cast Concrete: A pre-cast concrete catch basin is very common and won’t often cost you very much. However, you will need a backhoe or a small crane to install one.
  • Cast-In Concrete: A cast-in concrete basin will be a good choice if you can’t deal with a heavy pre-cast basin. With a cast-in concrete basin, you will have to dig a hole, plot your meal frame, and sturdy with rebar.

How Much Does It Cost To Build a Concrete Catch Basin?

For professional concrete catch basin installation, you can expect to spend anywhere from $2,500 to $5,000 depending on the size of your catch basin and the materials used. If you’re on a budget, you may consider going with a plastic catch basin that you can pick up from a local hardware store for under $100. Of course, plastic is far less durable than concrete, so we wouldn’t consider it unless your water management needs are minimal.

Final Thoughts

As you can see, building a concrete catch basin is not an incredibly difficult task, as long as you can build your frame and pour your concrete. Not only will it solve a number of water management dilemmas, it will also increase the value of your home and prevent any problems with drainage in the future!

Gravel Driveway - Pro & Cons

A Gravel driveway is common in residential and commercial settings due to its many advantages to property owners. Gravel has gained so much popularity in the construction industry since it is not only used to build roadways but also real estate.

This type of driveway construction is well known today because they’re cheap and not difficult to maintain. In the countryside,  gravel is used chiefly for constructing minor and major roads. Usually, gravel driveways are often linked to concrete garage floors in most residential areas.

But what is a gravel driveway?

The term gravel refers to any loose stone or rock that is smaller than cobble but bigger than sand, with a diameter ranging from 1/10 inch to 2 1/2 inches. Gravel for driveways is mainly a processed product composed of rocks, clay, and sand. This mixture is well compacted to form a sturdy driveway surface.

Gravel is by far the most accessible material to work with when it comes to driveway materials. If you have the time and desire, a gravel driveway can be constructed as a do-it-yourself project. However, before you commit to laying the gravel yourself, you should think about a number of things, such as the right size, how to mark off the driveway area, and so on.

Gravel driveways, when correctly designed, can be less expensive and endure longer than other options for driveway construction.  Ultimately, to guarantee that your driveway performs effectively and lasts as long as possible, there is a need to choose the proper gravel for your environment.

Who Is a Gravel Driveway Good For?

Gravel driveways are ideal for residences in rural locations, but they can also be used in urban settings. Besides, since this driveway type is adaptable and overly flexible, they are perfect for property prone to movement or having huge tree roots close to it.

In addition, gravel driveways are generally preferred by large property owners over asphalt or even concrete as they’re more cost-effective to install.

Nevertheless, this driveway type does not perform well for homes that necessitate constant scraping or snow plowing since there is a probability that the plow can scrape up the gravel as well. Before constructing this driveway type in the city, ensure you inquire from your local department the kind of rock to be used because not all gravel is fitted on the particular land meant for the project.

Maintaining a Gravel Driveway

You will need monthly maintenance for gravel driveways more than concrete or asphalt driveways. For maximum utilization, always take care of the gravel driveway, as this will cut down avoidable costs for repairs and replacement.

Try to regrade your gravel driveway at least once annually. However, the number of times you regrade your driveway is dependent on the climate and condition and the number of vehicles plying the road every year.

Even when it is well maintained, grooves, dips, and potholes are prone to cause damage to driveways constructed with gravel. Besides, reckless activities like a rash way of driving cars will make the gravel driveway lose out quickly.

The good news is that even with damages caused by potholes and dips, it can be easily repaired with little effort. Many landlords can effortlessly fill the potholes with extra gravel they have left by using a shovel. And the earlier this is done, the better because the dips and potholes are controlled from getting worse. In a case where there are larger potholes, a bigger implement is used and not a shovel.

Tractor, grader, and bucket are the suitable tools used for regrading. The grader is used to level the surface, extend it, and neatly fit in the gravel.

The major challenge of using gravel driveways is the difficulty that comes with plow or snowblower.  As earlier highlighted, the gravel is coarse and doesn’t have a smooth surface, making it really hard to remove dirt, unlike the concrete that can be scrapped without any displacement.

Furthermore, gravel is not winter-friendly, which means regardless of how careful the scraping is done, it is expected to displace during this season. However, a replacement is often recommended to be on the safer side.

How Long Will a Gravel Driveway Last?

The pleasing thing about gravel is that you can regrade and restore it on a regular basis. This means that if it is well maintained, gravel driveways can last for ten decades.

However, asphalt and concrete are difficult to correct or restore when they wear out. They require a considerable amount of money to repair when compared to driveways built with gravel.

In addition, gravel is not too open to damages from yeartide freeze-thaw cycles or frost heave, which can cause noticeable cracking and settling in solid driveway materials.

How Much Does a Gravel Driveway Cost?

As said earlier, gravel is cost-friendly and can be affordable by any homeowner. It doesn’t have a fixed price, but it ranges from $1 square foot to more than $3 per square foot. The distance the gravel has to be trucked to the project site is a significant factor contributing to the price disparity. Another consideration is the driveway’s thickness; the more thick the driveway, the more the price.

However, no matter the amount, gravel driveways are the cheapest driveways you can ever get.

The Pros and Cons of a Gravel Driveway

The Pros and Cons of a Gravel Driveway

There are many advantages of using gravel as a driveway construction and a few drawbacks associated with it.  So, whether you are considering replacing your existing driveway or installing a new one with gravel, the following pros and cons will help you with your decision against that next project.

Pros:

  • Cost-friendly: You can easily purchase this material without boring holes in your pockets. It’s a pocket-friendly material which you can always find available. Although it’s pretty cheap, you’ll have to spend a few bucks for the annual maintenance of your driveway.
  • Easy Maintenance: You don’t have to go through a lot of hassle to maintain the surfaces of your driveway. If it sinks because of the effect of environmental factors like rainwater or snow, it’s easy to fill up. The nature of gravel makes it accommodate reflowing of water from the ground.
  • Diversity of design: Gravel is one of the best bets for the sophisticated design of the exterior structure of your residence. It’s suitable for everyone’s taste, be it classic or modern!
  • Easy installation: Within a week, you can construct your driveway using gravel. You don’t have to wait for so long before you can start using your driveway if the construction material is gravel.
  • Resistant to weather: Gravel driveways are often unaffected by extreme weather and do not require additional drainage to handle run-off and surface water during severe rainstorms. Besides, if you utilize the highly suggested driveway grids on your drive, you’ll be happy to hear that they’re also porous, allowing water to run down into the ground.
  • Water drainage: A gravel driveway also helps with water drainage. It permits the water to escape into the air and drain away into the ground without affecting the driveway.

Cons:

  • Snow and ice removal: The difficulty associated with removing snow and ice is one of the biggest challenges of using gravel for driveway installation. It takes extra effort to remove snow and ice from a gravel driveway when it’s winter season. To make the surface less slippery, you may have to use salt and sand on the driveway surface.
  • Formation of ruts: ruts can form on a heavily used gravel driveway, which is unsightly. To keep it looking nice, you’ll need to fill in the ruts on a routine basis. Any driveway constructed with gravel is more likely to develop ruts over time.
  • It tends to become dirty: don’t be surprised when you see dust and dirt in the air while driving over this type of driveway. This occurrence mainly takes place during the dry season, and it may make the exterior of your residence dirty. Besides, if not careful, the dust from the driveway can fill up the stuff in your rooms. 
Driveway

Gravel vs. Asphalt Driveway

Both gravel and asphalt driveways have advantages and disadvantages. So, when deciding which driveway option to use, it’s critical to evaluate both.

So, the following are some things you need to know regarding gravel vs. asphalt driveway. The below points will help you make an informed decision about which option to consider for your next project:

  • Appearance: A gorgeous, jet-black asphalt driveway has a far more polished esthetic than a gravel driveway. Although some people prefer the rustic look of gravel driveways, the beauty of blacktop is hard to compare.
  • Cost of installation: although gravel is less expensive than asphalt, asphalt is still a viable paving option. So, before opting for gravel due to its low cost, consult with your local paving specialist about asphalt and the project cost.
  • Durability: both gravel and asphalt driveways can survive for decades if properly maintained. Your local climate determines the lifespan of your asphalt or gravel driveway, but you should expect 10 to 20 years for asphalt and much longer for gravel.
  • Snow/Ice suitability: blacktops absorb the sun’s heat, making them a great choice for cold climates. So, asphalt driveways melt hazardous ice and snow faster than gravel driveways.
  • Property value: gravel won’t contribute much to the value of your property, but asphalt’s beautiful appearance will.
  • Load-carrying capacity: gravel is little more than crushed rock, and we all know how tough rock is. And so, it can withstand daily traffic as well as heavy farm equipment and heavy loads.  Gravel is a popular choice when there is much weight in consideration, such as industrial equipment. On the other hand, while asphalt’s flexibility allows it to carry most big loads, such as your municipal garbage truck, heavy loads during periods of extreme cold or heat, it can render your asphalt driveway more vulnerable to damage.
  • Roughness on vehicles: gravel driveway is harder to drive on than asphalt. The increased vehicle exertion on gravel vs. asphalt might wear your vehicle and tires out earlier than expected based on how often you use your driveway.
  • Displacement: gravel driveways can be displaced by the weight of vehicles and equipment; as a result, raking, shoveling, and grading will be required to replace stone that has been moved off its route. If adequately laid, asphalt, on the other hand, will stay compacted for a long time.
     
  • Washout: gravel isn’t as well-fixed as asphalt; therefore, it will eventually wash away. So, if you don’t want to ruin your driveway after a few strong rainstorms, gravel paving isn’t a suitable option in flood-prone areas.
Gravel Driveway

How to make a gravel driveway

 Below are a few of the steps you can follow a gravel driveway:

  1. Stake out the driveway’s path using landscape stakes with string or wine.
  2. You ought to clear the topsoil or any grass from the marked-off area to make way for the gravel.
  3. After you’ve cleared a route for the gravel driveway, you’ll need to figure out how much stone you’ll need.
  4. Plan gravel delivery and level the soil along the driveway’s path before the first gravel delivery truck arrives at your home.
  5. You should have the base layer of gravel spread out and compacted
  6. Proceed to add a middle layer of driveway gravel. In an ideal world, the gravel delivery truck would have this done for you, and whether that is feasible or not, the edge of the gravel driveway will need some TLC first.
  7. Lastly, add the surface layer of gravel.

Conclusion

As a property owner planning to install a new driveway for your residence or commercial area, gravel is an excellent choice to consider. However, it depends on what you intend to get out of the driveway project. 

For example, gravel is your best bet if you need a more viable, affordable, durable, sturdy material. On the other hand, you want a more esthetically pleasing surface that will contribute to your home value, then think asphalt. 

In a nutshell, it would be best to consult with your driveway contractor to discuss your need to get informed advice to guide you in your decision.

Driveway Width

An appropriate driveway width is an essential element of a well-designed parking space. This measurement varies by the size and type of vehicles you will be parking on the driveway.

What is the Standard for Driveway Width?

The standard measurement for driveway width is between 10 feet and 12 feet. If you own a small vehicle such as a car, this width will suffice your needs. However, for larger vehicles such as vans, trucks, campers, or RVs, you need a driveway with a minimum width of 12 feet. 

Remember, a driveway is only good enough if it can accommodate all the cars you require to park on your property without hitting any landscape features, plantations, and building structures.

Apart from that, several other factors determine the width of your driveway. Continue to read about them, so the vehicle does not damage the building and fixtures in its surroundings during navigation and vice versa. 

Single car Driveway Width

Factors influencing Driveway Width:

A standard driveway width for the residential property should be a minimum of 10 feet to 12 feet. On the other hand, a commercial driveway made to park large vans, trucks, and other vehicles must start at 12 feet. In this case, the upper limit for the driveway width depends on the individual parking needs of each commercial unit. 

That said, there are standard driveway widths for the number of cars that you will be parking. For example, if you have more than 1 car, it is wise to know the recommended width for a driveway to accommodate all cars comfortably. Let us have a look at these measurements. 

1. Single Car Driveway Width

A single-car driveway refers to residential driveways, and in this case, the above-mentioned standard width size of 10 feet to 12 feet will be appropriate and enough. However, you must ensure that you leave enough space on both sides of the driveway so the vehicle can turn easily without damaging any walls, fixtures, or plantations. 

Plus, there should be enough space for you to step out of the car and onto the driveway’s pavement and not into your lawn. In case your driveway has walls on both sides, you have to ensure that there is enough space for both your car doors to open without hitting either wall. 

2. Two Car Driveway Width

The minimum recommended width for a 2-car driveway is between 20 feet and 24 feet. 20 feet will give you enough to part two cards next to each other. However, this width will not allow both car doors to open when parked side by side. 

On the other hand, a 24 feet wide two-car drive provides ample space for both cars to park next to each other with their doors wide open. 

3. Three Car Driveway Width

As the name suggests, a three-car driveway, also known as triple driveway, allows you to park 3 cars or small to normal sized cars in a parking space. The minimum recommended measurement for this type of car driveway is between 20 feet and 30 feet. 

Once again, the wider the driveway, the better it is. You have to make sure that you can open car doors easily of all 3 cars parked together on the driveway. 

4. Circular Driveway Width

A circular driveway refers to a round-shaped drive or one that resembles a horseshoe design. If you are planning to build a circular driveway on your property, the minimum width of this driveway must be 12 feet. 

This will give each vehicle enough space to turn without driving into the wall’s edge and causing damage to your driveway, property, and the vehicle itself. 

driveway width Radiuses

Different Turning Radiuses

A turning radius is a minimum area required by the vehicle to make a turn without touching or damaging any walls, pavements, edges, plantations, lawn area, etc. there are four main turning radiuses you must consider when designing a driveway and determining its width. 

1. Parking Areas

The minimum recommended turning radius for your parking area should be 9 feet to 18 feet for a single car.  However, you will need an expert’s opinion on this if you are planning to park more than one car. On top of that, does your family or business have cars and vehicles of all shapes and sizes? 

In that case, you will have to follow a thumb rule and create a turning radius for the parking area, keeping the largest vehicle or car in mind as smaller vehicles. As far as the bigger automotive can navigate, smaller ones will have no issue at all.

2. Backout Area

A parking space requires a minimum of 30 feet to 35 feet in length and 10 feet in width. However, a typical turnaround dimension of 10 feet by 20 feet should provide enough space for your car to back into or pull out of the drive. 

3. Driveway Entry Radius

You must allow a minimum of 10 feet to 15 feet at the entrance of your driveway in order to avoid parking on a sidewalk. These sidewalks are the property of local and state governments. Therefore, you must not park your car in the way of people walking on these sidewalks. 

4. Garage Turning Radius

This turning radius will vary with the size of your garage, i.e., how many cars/vehicles you will be parking in it. That said, here is a minimum breakup of radii for different garage sizes. 

  • A single car garage- 9 to 12 feet in width
  • A double car garage –20 to 24 feet in width
  • Parking stalls –  10 x 20 feet
  • Single car turnaround – 10 x 20 feet
Driveway Width

Things You Must Consider When Designing a Driveway

Here are seven factors that you must think through when planning your driveway. 

  • Pick a style that allows you to utilize maximum parking space
  • Always make sure the ease of access 
  • Do not forget about the driveway accessories such as LED lights and curb lights. 
  • Pick a design that matches your taste, i.e., contemporary or traditional
  • Check with your local authorities if you need permission before installing a new driveway
  • Do not forget the importance of drainage 
  • Take care of the trees and other plantations nearby that may get under your driveway and impact its structural integrity. 

Conclusion

Now that you know the basics of driveway width, you can use this information to plan the designing phase of your project. However, if you wish to get some expert advice, Paving Finder can help you connect with experts’ opinions and access additional tips and resources.

Driveway Lights

Driveway lights are simultaneously a safety feature and an esthetic one: good lighting along your driveway will protect your car and your home inhabitants, but it can also round off your nighttime curb appeal. 

Thanks to innovations such as solar power or Bluetooth–powered remote controls, driveway lights now offer an unprecedented amount of options. However, it’s easier to drown in an excessively drive pond than in a small one. In this buying guide, we will help you narrow down some of the best choices.

What Makes the Best Driveway Lights?

In a nutshell, the best driveway lights are reliable, energy-efficient, durable, and easy to install. In that sense, LED lights usually offer the best value for money. 

Rotating lights that can beam light in several directions will provide a more efficient solution for those with vast front space. When possible, try to choose a solar-powered option: these are more likely to be wireless and will eliminate the hazards entailed by outdoor wiring. 

Solar lights are energy-efficient by definition and are usually easy to install. Hardwired lights require you to run buried wires through your backyard, which an electrician must handle. Meanwhile, wireless solar options often work on a “stick (to the ground) and go” basis.

When it comes to ensuring durability and reliability, you want to look at two specific features:

  • The type of solar light needed: high-end solar lights can charge with partial sun rather than direct sun. Depending on your region or in the presence of nearby trees and shrubs, this will provide a more reliable and more extended light source.
  • The type of light bulb they use: as a general rule, LED bulbs last much longer than old school incandescent bulbs. However, they still break at some point. Some driveway light models use special bulb sizes that may be hard to find at a local hardware store or too expensive to replace.

Other features that usually mean “good value,” but that may not be as universally necessary, include:

  • Bluetooth or Wi-Fi connectivity. If you have Smart Home capabilities installed in your home, such as Alexa or Google Home Assistant, this will allow you to control these lights remotely. You can use this to set conditional schedules, synchronize them with proximity sensors, or even check on them remotely.
  • Proximity sensors. At low-traffic times (such as after 10 PM), proximity sensors will allow you only to illuminate your driveway when someone is passing by. This can help you save a considerable amount of energy.

1. Siedinlar Solar Driveway Lights

Driveway Lights

> See the product here

These “road markers” provide a potent but friendly source of light from the ground up. They are solar-powered LED lights with enough battery capacity to provide up to 15 continuous hours of lighting.

The design is surprisingly elegant for those who bother to look closely. However, they were created to be discreet: less than an inch high, the Siedinlar lights are easy to hide along a gravel pathway or on the sides of the driveway itself. They are made from pretty stiff metal and are ranked as IP68 waterproof, so there is no need to worry about stepping on them or setting a nearby sprinkler.

This model comes in two versions: a white-light and a blue-light one.

Pros:

  • Easy to install
  • Step resistant
  • Will resist rain, blizzard, or intense heat
  • Up to 15 hours of continuous lighting

Cons:

  • Require additional batteries to operate the timer
  • The ON/OFF switch is hard to find

2. URPOWER Solar Lights

Driveway Lights

> See the product here

The URPOWER solar lights are typical “stake lights”: that is, they are mounted on thick styrene stakes, with the light and the photovoltaic cells resting on top, joined by a resilient hinge. This provides them with two significant advantages:

  • They are straightforward to install: just stick them on the ground
  • You can adjust the angle of the bulb and the cell easily, depending on what you need.

The LED bulbs can provide up to 10 continuous hours of light, provided they remain under direct sunlight. However, they will still get 6 hours of energy if kept under partial light. The URPOWER lights are also IP64 waterproof so that they can resist water and rough weather. 

Pros:

  • Resilient
  • Easy to install
  • Can be adjusted separately

Cons:

  • No timer setting
  • No ON/OFF switch

3. Happybuy Solar Driveway Lights

> Click here to see the product

These Happybuy Driveway Lights are, at first glance, very similar to the Siedinlar ones. However, they are equipped with a set of screw holes, screws, and adhesives, which adapt to a broader array of floor types. 

These solar-powered offer a very decent amount of light through two separate rows of LED bulbs. These are available in blue, white, green, orange, and red lights. They can provide up to 72 consecutive hours of light, visible for over 870 yards. They provide a safe and cost-effective option to make your driveway safer during bad weather. However, changing the light colors also makes them great as a decorative accent for pool decks and balconies.

The case itself has an IP68 waterproof rating and can handle up to 20 tons of direct weight.

Pros:

  • Very resilient and weather-resistant
  • Easy to install
  • Can remain on for three days straight

Cons:

  • No ON/OFF switch
  • The outer case feels plasticy

4. GardenBliss Solar Lights for Outdoor Pathway

> See the product here

The GardenBliss solar light set is an efficient set of solar-powered LED lights. At first glance, they do not have much in the way of bells and whistles. Yet, thanks to their sleek design and quality finish, they provide an exquisite option for anyone interested in landscaping. 

Each small lamp is mounted on top of an adjustable stake, between 8 to 12 inches long. The lamp will offer light at a full 360-degree radius and hides the photovoltaic cell and the light sensor on top. The lights will turn themselves on automatically as soon as dusk sets in but won’t be affected by nearby lamps. 

Pros:

  • Adjustable stake length
  • Long-lasting battery
  • Elegant

Cons:

  • No ON/OFF switch
  • Very light

5. JACKYLED Solar Driveway Lights

Driveway Lights

> Click here to see the product

These driveway lights are solar-powered, small, and discreet but still provide a decent amount of light once activated.  They can last for up to 72 consecutive hours after 10 hours of charging.

Each light comes inside a die-cast aluminum case, featuring the photovoltaic cell on top and two bright LED bulbs on each side. Each case is less than an inch tall, and each light provides up to 500 lumens of white light. They need to be screwed onto wood floor panels or asphalt directly – and the latter may be difficult to do by yourself.

Pros:

  • Sturdy construction
  • Very bright illumination
  • Includes screws

Cons:

  • They only come in white
  • They need to be pre-charged in direct sunlight for three days before first use

6. Solpex Silver Solar Driveway Lights

Driveway Lights

> Click here to see the product

The combination of stainless steel stakes and cold white lights provides the Solpex Solar driveway lights with a futuristic appeal. This is a pretty budget-friendly option and will work great if you want to create a path through a big garden.

The lights themselves only provide up to 8 consecutive hours of light after a full charge, which may not be enough for the winter. Although the stakes themselves are solid and garden-friendly, the photovoltaic cell on top of the light is left a bit unprotected: make sure not to touch it directly.

Pros:

  • Light
  • Easy to install
  • The polished steel finish makes them look elegant

Cons:

  • Short per-charge life
  • The photovoltaic cells are delicate.

7. TomCare Solar Lights Upgraded

> You can see the product here

Why bother with flammable tiki torches when you can have a solar version that looks almost the same? The TomCare solar lights were created for anyone who likes the warm glow of fire around their garden but doesn’t want to deal with the extra risk

Each torch has an additional ground stake, extending the pole’s length from 32 to 43 inches. The lamp is covered with a mesh of ABS material, which hides a rich yellow-orange LED bulb. Beneath the lamp, there is an ON/OFF switch that also allows you to set them to “flickering mode.” When flickering, the mesh and the light color will make them look like real fire torches.

Pros:

  • Tall and resilient
  • Up to 12 hours of consecutive light
  • “Fire torch” flickering effect

Cons:

  • The flickering effect shortens the battery life
  • If you want to use the additional stake, they are harder to install

8. Signature Solar Garden Lights

Driveway Lights

> Go to the product

Small, budget-friendly, and easy to use, the Signature Solar Garden lights are just the right height to highlight your flower beds and garden paths. 

Each small stake lamp is rain, moisture, and snow resistant. They provide up to 15 lumens in all directions. They do not have an ON/OFF switch, so instead, they will turn on automatically at sunset, thanks to the sensors located right below the photovoltaic cell. 

The stakes themselves have a smooth finish, reminiscent of polished steel. The lamps look minimalistic and chic. They provide white light only, but the lamps can be black or silver.

Pros:

  • Budget-friendly
  • Resistant to extreme weather

Cons:

  • The bulbs provide less light than competing brands
  • Very light and could be knocked off by the wind

9. VOLISUN Solar Driveway Lights

> Click here to see the product

With these driveway lights, VOLISUN chose to privilege more light for a longer time: with 6 LED bulbs per light and the ability to stay active for up to 5 consecutive days, these are an outstanding option for commercial spaces or sports fields. 

The case is slightly taller than those of most other driveway lights, which makes them less discreet. They only provide white light. These lights are all IP67 waterproof, moisture-proof, and rustproof. They can resist up to 20 tons of pressure. Due to their vast battery capacity, you can only charge them fully with direct sunlight.

Pros:

  • An ON/OFF switch at the bottom allows them to enter light sensing mode
  • Up to 5 days of continuous operation
  • It can be screwed onto the floor or stuck with stone adhesive

Cons:

  • Tall and bulky

10. Moonrays Richmond Solar Path Lights

Driveway Lights

> See the product

The Moonrays Richmond solar path lights try to honor their name from a pure design standpoint: they look ideal for creating the sort of romantic nuance that we associate with the moon. Rather than bright yellow lights, they offer 30 lumens of warm white light. The lamp is designed to provide a 120-degree beam angle, which can still illuminate a pathway thoroughly but leave the rest at a more discreet level of twilight.

Each stake is just over 18 inches tall, providing a knee-high source of light that won’t get lost in your flower beds. They can run for up to 8 hours after being fully charged.

Pros:

  • Well-designed and unusual
  • 30 lumens of light per lamp
  • Provide light up to 48 inches away

Cons:

  • Short run time of only 8 hours
  • They can only be installed on soft earth

11. SmarketBuy Solar Lighting for Driveways

> Go to see the product

The SmarketBuy solar dock lights are meant to be durable and practical rather than beautiful. However, you can hide the slightly blocky casing and compensate for the slightly aggressive white light they produce with proper landscaping.

Each dock light needs 8 hours of continuous sunlight for a full charge. Afterward, they will stay lit for up to 72 consecutive hours. They are equipped with crystal light photovoltaic cells, which last longer than those featured on cheaper models.

Pros:

  • Very weather-resistant
  • Long run time
  • Short recharge time

Cons:

  • They don’t look as beautiful as they could

12. SOLMORE Solar Driveway Lights

> Click here to see the product

If you are looking for a more futuristic look that will fit a garden driveway and a pool area with the same ease, consider the SOLMORE driveway and dock lights.

Each dock light includes 6 LED blue light bulbs (3 per side) and a wide, light solar panel on top. They require 12 consecutive hours of bright (but not necessarily direct) sunlight for a full charge, and they can provide up to 10 hours of light at night. The aluminum frame is resistant and rated IP68 waterproof and shockproof.

Pros:

  • Can take heavy loads and direct rainfall or hale
  • Provide very bright lights
  • Great for road safety and pool decks

Cons:

  • Require a long charge time

13. Voona Solar LED Outdoor Lights

> Click here to see the product

Though a 360-degree beam may offer the best safety standard for roads or shores, regular gardens can often benefit from more creative solutions. The Voona Solar LED outdoor lights provide an exciting alternative thanks to their delicate “sunray” pattern. This can be used to create fascinating patterns around a lawn or a flat court.

Beyond the style touches, the Voona lights are functional and efficient. Each one can provide only 6 lumens. They compensate for this because it only takes them 8 hours to recharge fully and provide over 24 hours of continuous lighting. Each stake is 15 inches long, and you can unscrew the spike from the rest of the lamp for easier removal.

Pros: 

  • Beautiful sunray pattern
  • Short recharge time
  • Light and resilient

Cons:

  • Only 6 lumens of light
  • No ON/OFF switch

14. Moonrays Payton LED Solar Path Lights

> Go to the product

The Moonrays Payton model uses much of the same hardware as the Richmond model and offers a similar construction and durability. They also use the same type of LED bulb and battery. The main difference lies in the lamp: the Peyton model replaces the smooth glass cover with a “hammered glass” one. This creates a “still water” look for the light, which will appear textured with tiny bubbles.

Each lamp can illuminate an area of up to 12 inches and withstand rain, snow, and dust.

Pros:

  • Weather and dust resistant
  • Easy to install
  • The “hammered glass” lamp creates a softer atmosphere

Cons:

  • Only available in warm white
  • No ON/OFF switch

15. GIGALUMI Solar Walkway Lights

> Click here to see the product

Sleek and discreet, the GIGALUMI solar walkway lights are more suited to walking paths than proper driveways. However, if you have an eye for exterior décor, you will find that their minimalism and color options offer a lot of potential.

These lights are available in cold white, warm white, a multicolor pack (green, red, yellow, and blue), and color-changing versions. They can provide up to 8 hours of continuous illumination. 

Pros:

  • Easy to install
  • Small and light
  • Many color options

Cons:

  • Short run time
  • They feel frail

16. HGTV LED Solar Outdoor Path Lighting

> Go to see the product

Well-constructed and beautiful, these outdoor path lighting option stays true to its brand. HGTV paid a lot of attention to the design details, although the hardware is still acceptable. These lights can offer up to 3 lumens each, and they can stay on for ten consecutive hours.

However, the lamps and stakes are made entirely from stainless steel, with an oil-rubbed finish. The glass lamp is slightly textured, which provides the outgoing light with extra warmth.

Pros:

  • Beautifully constructed, with great attention to detail
  • Easy to install and remove
  • The stakes are resilient and can handle shock, bangs, and rain

Cons:

  • Only 3 lumens of light each
  • Only 8 hours of run time

17. CHINLY Waterproof Solar Driveway Lights

> Click here to see the product

Driveway lights are rarely as used for décor as garden stakes: they often find their place around driveways and steps. Because of these, most models stick to bright, cold white or blue lights. Sensing this gap in the market, CHINLY made their lights available in warm white and a multicolor pack.

These lights are ranked as IP67, so they are waterproof and can withstand heavy blizzards or intense heat. They can provide up to 40 consecutive hours of light but need 15 hours of sunlight for a full charge.

Pros:

  • Available in different colors
  • Resilient and weather-proof.
  • A long run time of up to 40 hours

Cons:

  • Require long charging
  • Need drilling

18. APONUO Outdoor Solar Lighting for Driveways

> Click here to see the product

If you are interested in the brightest possible lights or live somewhere with very harsh winters, the APONUO may be the most efficient choice for you. This is because these driveway lights only need 4 hours of direct sunlight to charge fully. Then, they can stay on for up to 72 consecutive hours. In addition, each lamp is made up of 6 LED bulbs and is visible from a distance of 875 yards.

Pros:

  • Visible from a very long distance
  • Large battery capacity, which provides up to 72 hours of consecutive operation
  • They charge quickly

Cons:

  • Not very pretty
  • Only available in cold white

19. MAGGIFT Solar Outdoor Solar Driveway Lights

> Click here to see the product

Driveway lights may be great for road safety – but that doesn’t mean they cannot be made more discreet. If that’s what you need, the MAGGIFT disc light may be an acceptable compromise. Ultra-slim and completely smooth, each one of these “discs” is surrounded by a series of 12 LED lights.

The MAGGIFT lights are also flat enough to be half-hidden in a lawn, screwed in a gravel walkway, or into the asphalt. Both the lights and the solar panel are completely protected by a hard waterproof and shockproof case that can withstand up to 200 kg. 

Pros:

  • 12 bulbs per light, which irradiate around a wide area
  • Include an ON/OFF switch
  • IP68 waterproof

Cons:

  • Only up to 8 hours of consecutive operation

20. YiLaie Solar Driveway Lights

> Click here to see the product

These solar LED deck lights offer a similar futuristic look as the MAGGIFT discs, although they are not as fond of rough conditions. On the other hand, they can be stuck onto steps, planks, and tiles using the 3M tape included). 

The sides of each disc is completely covered by small LED bulbs, and therefore all 360 degrees around it will be illuminated. They can offer up to 15 hours of continuous light and only need 6 hours to be fully charged.

Pros:

  • Easier to install on tile or hardwood floors
  • Great battery capacity
  • Fast charging

Cons:

  • They cannot be screwed onto concrete

Conclusion

There are probably hundreds of additional options for driveway alarms out there. However, we have strived to combine a good balance of budget-friendly, high-quality products. If your landscape already has a theme, you can also find many specialty options, which, although beautiful, may not be as versatile. 

driveway

Many property owners prefer to have macadam driveway installed for their residential and commercial properties since it is economical and offers a smooth, sturdy, and esthetically pleasing surface for all types of automobile traffic. 

It is a common fact that surfaces laid with this paving material are usually hard-wearing, smooth and will enhance the appearance of your property exterior. Since macadam is skid resistant, like asphalt, it guarantees the safety of vehicles plying on it, particularly, during the winter. 

But what is a macadam driveway?

Macadam driveway, also referred to as chip and seal, tar and chip, and oil and stone, is a type of road construction where single-sized crushed stone strata of small angular stones are put in skin-deep lifts and compressed extensively. The compaction may result in the formation of a binding coating of stone dust (source material crushed stone) and may also be coated with a binder after rolling to bind stone and dust together then compressing the stones into the sticky material to create a firm, lifelong surface.

A macadam pavement, unlike asphalt, requires less upkeep as it does not need to be sealed every year.

Although the macadam construction method has mostly been supplanted by asphalt and concrete on public roadways, lots of homeowners still yearn for the unique smoothness and esthetic of macadam. This type of driveway surface is praised for its esthetics, minimal maintenance needs, and cost: it is somewhat less expensive to install than asphalt.

macadam driveway

How much does a macadam driveway cost?

Although installing a driveway, using macadam is generally inexpensive to build, several variables may increase the cost to a substantial amount of dollars. One common factor here is the municipal regulation; since a driveway links to a public roadway, there may be local laws limiting the width of the driveway and the materials used to construct it. A permit is usually required, and the prices can range from minimal to expensive, depending on the region.

Notwithstanding, resurfacing an existing driveway with macadam can cost about $600 to $1,800 for a 12’x50′ (single-car driveway), or $1 to $3 or more per square foot; and laying a new driveway (particularly with a gravel foundation) can take up to $1,200 to $2,400 for a 12’x50′ (600 square feet), or $2 to $4 or more per square foot. However, the amount of work required to create the base, as well as the quality and quantity of stone utilized in the top layer, can drive up costs.

It is also worth mentioning that driveway contractors don’t usually charge by the square foot; instead, they offer a total price for a given project, and large projects may qualify for discounts.

How hard is it to maintain a macadam driveway?

Maintaining a macadam pavement is not difficult. It conceals oil spills better than asphalt and concrete driveways, and it’s beautiful finish lasts even if it is not treated on a regular basis.

Furthermore, a macadam pavement does not need frequent seal coating, which is often performed every two or three years on asphalt driveways. The only work you’d have to perform would be to repair or replace macadam that have been dislodged from the asphalt.

driveway Maintenance

What are the pros and cons of a macadam driveway?

Driveway built with macadam material comes with some advantages and disadvantages; however, your choice of opting for this surfacing material is dependent on how you weigh its pros and cons. The below advantages and drawbacks of this driveway type will help guide your decision for your next paving project:

Pros:

  • Maintenance and repair: Macadam driveway requires minimal maintenance. It does not require to be sealed as often as asphalt, and even tiny cracks tend to mend on their own. Notwithstanding, you may refresh the surface every 10 years or so by applying extra loose stone and hot bitumen.

    In addition, care should be taken when using a snow plow to remove snow from this pavement surface since the pressure from snow plows can scratch the rough surface of macadam pavement. So, if you’re going to use a plow, keep the blade just above the surface; otherwise, use a snow blower or shovel as a best alternative.
  • Ease of installation: One of the most appealing advantages of a macadam driveway is how easy it is to install. The gravel base is the first step in the procedure. Following that, heated liquid asphalt is poured over the gravel then loose stone chips are put over the liquid asphalt and compacted.

A macadam pavement, like a tarmac driveway, can be constructed in a single day and you may walk on it right away after installation. However, it is recommended that you wait at least three days before driving or parking on your new macadam paved driveway.

  • Design choices: This sort of paving material comes with a variety of design options. The color of a macadam pavement is determined by the top layer of loose stones, and there are many distinct colors to select from. Certainly, you can use this sort of material to construct a one-of-a-kind and visually stunning driveway.
  • Comfort and convenience: Macadam driveway is a fantastic choice if you desire a slip-resistant surface. Its rough surface improves grip and reduces the danger of slip-and-fall incidents, notably when the surface is covered with snow or wet.
  • Cost-effective: Compared to concrete and asphalt driveways, this type of driveway is less expensive. It’s a good option if you have a lengthy driveway since it’s affordable.

Cons:

The main disadvantage of installing a macadam driveway is that not many driveway paving companies provide this service.  Besides, a driveway paved with macadam has a short lifespan; whereas concrete driveways may last up to 40 to 50 years with little repair needs, a driveway built with macadam will only last for 10 to 15 years at most. Furthermore, since this type of driveway surface is rough, removing snow off it might be difficult.

If you are wondering if Macadam Driveway is right for you, here you will have all the answers about it and its costs!

Is a macadam driveway right for you?

If you’re looking for a casual paving material that’s also affordable, macadam could be the ideal option for you. Notwithstanding, some cities and suburbs may have regulations or agreements prohibiting the use of this informal material for all roadway construction; hence, it is advised you check with your local regulations.

Conclusion

If you want to keep your budget modest and want an easy-to-build driveway, a macadam driveway is your best bet. Although it may have a limited lifespan than a concrete road; however, given the expense of installation and maintenance, it is definitely a cost-effective alternative for all homeowners. Therefore, if you are considering having this type of driveway installed for your residence or commercial settings, think of it as a very good choice!

driveway thickness

You might believe that concrete driveway thickness in residential and commercial settings is roughly the same. After all, they all appear to be the same and can withstand the weight of automobiles, right? Nevertheless, the degree of concrete thickness we choose when constructing a concrete driveway can significantly impact the driveway’s long-term condition.

Cracking is a common problem in driveways, especially those constructed with concrete. So, to prevent this, ensure that the concrete is of uniform thickness. Besides, your contractor will most likely ask you a few questions to determine the thickness of your concrete.

So, what is the best concrete driveway thickness?

In terms of thickness, a minimum of 4 inches is the standard requirement for passenger car driveways. However, for heavier automobiles, it is recommended to increase the thickness from 4 inches to 5 inches. According to the Tennessee Concrete Association, this adjustment will add about 20 percent to your concrete price but will increase your driveway’s load-carrying capacity by almost 50 percent. 

For adequate drainage, the driveway should be sloped a minimum of 1%, or 1/8 inch per sq, towards the street to prevent water from stagnating on the driveway.

Even though many municipalities have enacted codes requiring a specified minimum thickness, the absolute amount may be larger than that needed by the code in some situations.  As a result, before choosing concrete driveway thickness while creating the slab, a concrete contractor ought to consider several factors.

concrete driveway thickness

 So, what factors should you consider when choosing driveway thickness?

Constructing a new concrete driveway is a time-consuming task that also necessitates some pre-planning preparations. The success of the final driveway depends on determining the required concrete thickness before delivery and placing any prepared concrete. 

Your driveway may well not be able to handle the load and pressure exerted on it if you misjudge concrete thickness by pouring insufficiently prepared concrete. On the other hand,  if the concrete is overly thick, it could result in an unappealing driveway as well as more money spent on the delivery than required. So, the following are the factors to consider before choosing driveway thickness:

Soil condition

When determining the thickness of the concrete to be used for your driveway project, consider the stability of the underlying soil since unstable soil necessitates more reinforcement. If you are unsure whether or not the ground is solid enough to handle the ready-mix concrete once it has dried and hardened, we recommend consulting a professional for help. 

Perhaps you go through with the project despite the fact that the soil beneath it is unstable; it may not be able to resist the weather conditions in your area for long. In a nutshell, ensure you seek expert advice regarding your soil type before proceeding with the project.

The driveway’s function

The purpose of the driveway has a significant impact on how a concrete driveway thickness should be. A 3″ to 4″ thick pad is sufficient for lightweight automobiles, but a forklift, RV, or dump truck are heavyweights and need a thicker slab. However,  you should not be concerned about intermittent delivery trucks using the driveway since they are not usually wholly laden. 

Notwithstanding, many professional contractors choose to build residential concrete driveways between 4,” and 6″ thick on a prepared base since thicker concrete provides more strength.

Budget

The impact on the budget is determined by the driveway’s preparation work, dimensions, and concrete thickness. For instance, the cost of installing four full-sized car garage driveways will vary significantly from the cost of constructing a parking pad that accommodates a small motorcycle or compact car. 

In addition, the thickness of the pour, the use of rebar, the addition of a compacted base and subbase, as well as the type of color additives, finish, and texture will all affect the budget.

Driveway

Should I use concrete for my driveway?

The simple answer is YES! For a good reason, concrete is a popular choice for constructing driveways as its slabs are incredibly sturdy and long-lasting, and they need very little upkeep. So, it would not be a bad idea if you consider using concrete for your next driveway project in both residential and commercial settings. The following are a few advantages and disadvantages of a concrete driveway to help you decide whether or not to opt for it 

Pros

  • Affordability: When it comes to cost, concrete is a reasonably inexpensive alternative to consider. With concrete, you may only be requiring work done on your driveway just once during the period you own your house. Notwithstanding, concrete driveway thickness requirements can influence the cost.
  • Durability: concrete is a very long-lasting material. A concrete slab can endure 50 years or more if properly built and maintained.
  • Load-bearing capacity: concrete is an inflexible, strong material that can withstand even the heaviest vehicles when properly installed with the appropriate base and reinforcement.
  • Eco-friendly: Concrete driveways have lower embodied energy costs, making them a more environmentally sustainable paving option. That is, both producing and placing concrete uses less energy altogether.
  • Low maintenance: concrete driveways require little to no maintenance, which helps to save both money and time over time. It can last indefinitely, and no weeds will develop on the paved surface.
  • Heat reflectance: concrete driveways are cooler than their asphalt counterparts as they absorb fewer UV rays. They reflect the sun’s heat and do not significantly warm the air. If you want to appreciate the concrete reaction to the sun’s heat, consider walking barefoot on both asphalt and concrete surfaces on a hot day.

Cons

  • Unappealing: Concrete is not the most appealing construction material, even though color embossing and stamping are feasible. However, opting for such decorative treatment will necessitate additional upkeep and do not often last as plain concrete.
  • Difficult to repair: concrete driveway requires removing and replacing the entire concrete area during repair, which is hard to carry out. Besides, vehicle oil and fluid leaks can leave stains that are hard to eliminate.
  • It is labor-intensive to instal: for huge projects, a concrete driveway is not a very do-it-yourself-friendly material. Because pouring a concrete driveway requires a lot of hard work, most people choose to hire a professional to do it. However, the concrete driveway thickness can add to the labor needs.
  • It may crack with time: concrete, like asphalt, can crack with age. Nevertheless, this issue may be prevented if the concrete driveway is constructed by a professional contractor who strictly follows all necessary procedures.

Do you need rebar or wire in a concrete driveway?

Homeowners want to ensure their driveway is thick enough to avoid cracking, but there is another factor to consider. Concrete has a low tensile strength despite its compressive strength, rendering it susceptible to expanding over time, which leads to cracking. 

However, the concrete thickness can not be used to increase its tensile strength. Consequently, another material (either wire or rebar) will be used to reinforce the concrete. 

For residential areas with lower thickness and strength requirements, wire is more commonly used than rebar. In contrast, rebar is often an excellent option to consider for thicker driveways and areas with a lot of traffic.

Conclusion

Some factors determine concrete driveway thickness; however, most concrete driveways in residential settings are 4″ thick 3,000 to 4,000 per square inches concrete slabs on a 4″ to 8″ prepared and compressed gravel base. Nevertheless, it is wise to consult with an expert contractor when determining the actual thickness that would be best for your driveway project.

Best Driveway Alarm

A good-quality driveway alarm can make it easier for you to secure your house, business, or other property. But a driveway alarm isn’t only about security. It can also give you advanced warning of an incoming parcel delivery or visiting family members

What Makes the Best Driveway Alarm?

The best driveway alarm have two main parts: a transmitter that you position at the entrance of your property and a receiver that alerts you of a visitor. The ideal system will be able to detect movement, heat, or, ideally, both. It’s also important that the driveway alarm has a reasonable wireless range so that you have enough warning to react. Lastly, it should be possible to add more sensors and transmitters to ensure adequate coverage. 

The most reliable driveway alarm have sensors that work in one of two ways:

  • Electromagnetic or probe sensors: These sensors are triggered when large metal objects pass in front of them. So, if you only want to detect cars coming in or out of your premises, they’ll do exactly that.
  • Passive infrared (PIR) sensors: Can detect motion and heat, so the sensor sends an alert when a person or animal passes in front of it, and it can also pick up the movement from a car. 

Most driveway alarm sensors are powered by rechargeable or non-rechargeable batteries. Rechargeable batteries can be charged by solar power or by connecting them to an electric outlet.

The driveway alarm in this guide have been put to the test, and we think they’re among the best available. Read on to see which ones have made the cut.

1. eMacros Wireless Driveway Alarm

Best Driveway Alarms - eMacros Wireless Driveway Alarm

eMacros’s offering gets our vote for the best driveway alarm thanks to its reliable long-range transmission, rechargeable solar-powered battery, and expandability. It’s the best option for long-term usage and long driveways or big properties.

Key features:

  • Wireless range: ½ mile
  • Detection: Up to 30 ft
  • Expandable: Supports unlimited sensors and unlimited receivers

Pros: 

  • You won’t have to worry about replacing batteries
  • Lifetime warranty
  • Kit includes 1 receiver and 3 solar sensors

Cons:

  • Has only 4 chimes, so if you have more than four zones or sensors, it could be challenging figuring out where a breach has happened

2. Guardline Wireless Driveway Alarm

Best Driveway Alarms - Guardline Wireless Driveway Alarm

This excellent alarm from Guardian works well outdoors and in just about all weather conditions, including heavy downpours, snowstorms, and strong wind. 

Key features:

  • Wireless range: 500 ft
  • Detection: 40 ft
  • Expandable: 1 receiver can support up to 16 sensors

Pros:

  • Fully encased sensor made from industrial PVC with a hood to protect it from direct sunlight and rain
  • Works even in extreme hot and cold weather conditions – from -4 to 140 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Reliable transmission from the sensor to receiver

Cons:

  • If you want to secure a large property, like business premises or a farm, you’ll need a driveway alarm with a longer range.

3. Chamberlain Group CWA2000

Best Driveway Alarms - Chamberlain Group CWA2000

Chamberlain enjoys a strong reputation in the garage opener market and has used this expertise to design an efficient driveway alarm. If you’re looking for long-range transmission and wide-angle coverage, the CWA2000 will make sure nothing moves near your property without you knowing it.

Key features:

  • Wireless range: ½ mile
  • Detection: 30 ft
  • Expandable: Can add up to 7 sensors for each receiver

Pros:

  • 120-degree wide sensing angle
  • Secure multiple zones, with each zone, have a different sound and light pattern to alert you to an intruder

Cons:

  • Kit ships with only 1 sensor, and the cost of buying additional sensors can add up quickly (each one is about $40).

4. 1byone Wireless Driveway Alarm

1byone’s alarm is not only a good driveway alarm, but it can also be used for various applications, such as a warning system if your kids go into areas you’ve restricted them from or as a doorbell. The sensors feature a sleek white casing that won’t look out of place in indoor settings too.


Key features:

  • Wireless range: 1056 ft
  • Detection: 24 ft
  • Expandable: Can use up to 5 sensors per receiver

Pros: 

  • Effective motion detection outdoors and indoors
  • Reliable and affordable security option

Cons:

  • Not as weather-resistant as other more robust driveway alarm
  • Limited transmission range

5. Hosmart Wireless Driveway Alarm

Hosmart specializes in various home intercom solutions and is one of the newest entrants in the driveway alarm market. Their solar-powered device offers dependable security at a mid-range price.

Key features:

  • Wireless range: ½ mile
  • Detection: 25 ft
  • Expandability: Can use unlimited sensors and receivers

Pros:

  • Battery charged by solar panel built into the unit
  • Weather and water-resistant. The sensor is fitted with a cover for rain and sun

Cons:

  • Backup charging via USB or mains power is not possible
  • Limited chimes

6. TOGUARD Wireless Driveway Alarm

TOGUARD’s sensors are solar-powered and guarantee long-term functionality without needing to worry about replacing the batteries. 

Key features:

  • Wireless range: ½ mile
  • Detection: 30 ft
  • Expandability: Ships with 1 sensor and 1 receiver but can pair up to 4 sensors and unlimited receivers

Pros: 

  • Solar rechargeable lithium battery that can also be charged via USB if needed
  • Wide detection angle – 60 degrees horizontally and 40 degrees vertically
  • Sensor housed in an IP66 waterproof and dustproof casing

Cons:

  • It only has a 1-year warranty

7. Rodann Electronics Wireless Driveway Alarm

Rodann’s driveway alarm boasts robust construction and a compact detector. It’s a great option that can be installed at any entry point near your house, garage door, or business premises.

Key Features:

  • Wireless range: 1000 ft
  • Detection: 50 ft
  • Expandability: Each receiver can support up to 4 sensors. Can use unlimited receivers.

Pros:

  • Can add a variety of other notification accessories, including strobe lights, sirens, or buzzer

Cons:

  • Transmission range is not as good as less expensive competitor products

8. eMACROS Pairable Wireless Driveway Alarm

If you’re after a solar-powered driveway alarm that promises as much as 30 years of dependable use, the pairable wireless driveway alarm from eMacros delivers. Plus, you’ll get long-range detection at a great price.

Key Features:

  • Wireless range: ½ mile
  • Detection: 30 ft
  • Expandability: Can pair up to 7 transmitters to one receiver

Pros: 

  • Solar rechargeable battery ensures long-term function without the need for regular replacement
  • Reliable detection through rain, strong winds, heat, and other weather conditions

Cons:

  • Doesn’t offer high/low sensitivity adjustments, so you may get false alarms

9. Mighty Wireless Driveway Alarm

We love Mighty’s driveway alarm because it’s relatively easy to install. Just bury the electromagnetic sensor next to your driveway and attach the transmitter to a mounting post, and you’ll hear every car that enters your premises. 

Key Features:

  • Wireless range: 400 ft
  • Detection: 12 ft

Pros: 

  • No-fuss, straightforward security system that does the job
  • No false alarms caused by small animals, blown leaves, or direct sunlight

Cons:

  • Can’t detect animals and people walking into your property
  • The alarm can easily be triggered by passing cars if there isn’t enough clearance space around the sensor

10. Dakota Alert BBA-2500 Break Beam Alert Kit

The Dakota unit uses infrared beam sensors that work like invisible tripwires that can detect the movement of cars, animals, and people with impressive accuracy. The sensors use 4 solar-powered lithium-ion batteries.

Key Features:

  • Wireless range: ½ mile
  • Detection: Sensing beams can be mounted up to 300 ft apart
  • Expandability: Can use multiple sensors for one receiver

Pros:

  • Excellent system for setting up security around a perimeter without a physical barrier such as a fence
  • Beams are not easily triggered by falling leaves, other debris, or even small animals

Cons:

  • If you want to enhance your security by adding more sensors, you’ll always have to buy a pair

On the more expensive end of the scale 

11. HTZSafe Wireless Driveway Alarm

HTZSafe solar-powered transmitters deliver accurate operation, even in extreme hot or cold temperatures. You can choose from 35 chimes and assign a different one to each zone for easy monitoring. 

Key Features:

  • Wireless range: ¼ mile
  • Detection: 50 ft
  • Expandability: Can have up to 4 sensors and unlimited receivers

Pros:

  • You can start using the device within minutes of unboxing because it’s already pre-programmed for you
  • The sensitivity of the sensors can be set to high, medium, or low to limit false alarms

Cons: 

  • The transmission range could be better considering the price

12. ELEPOWSTAR Wireless Security Driveway Alarm

ELEPOWSTAR gives you a complete security system and works as both a driveway alarm and doorbell. You’ll essentially get 2 devices for the price of 1. 

Key Features:

  • Wireless range: 500 ft (driveway); 1000 ft (doorbell)
  • Detection: 20 ft (driveway); 16 ft (doorbell)
  • Expandability: Can assign up to 20 sensors to a receiver

Pros:

  • Solar-powered battery with reliable charging even on cloudy days
  • Double functionality at a reasonable price
  • You can customize your alerts with a choice of 58 chimes 

Cons: 

  • Has a limited transmission range

13. Wuloo Wireless Driveway Alarm

Wuloo’s driveway alarm is solidly constructed and tested in different weather conditions. It can be relied on for accurate long-range transmission and motion detection even in snow and rain. Additionally, its receiver also displays the time and can be used as an alarm clock too.

Key Features:

  • Wireless range: 1/3 mile
  • Detection: 30 ft 
  • Expandability: Can use up to 8 transmitters per receiver

Pros:

  • Possible to adjust transmitter sensitivity according to 4 levels 
  • Rechargeable battery that can last up to 12 months when fully charged. AC charger is included in the pack

Cons:

  • One of the more expensive options. If you’re on a tight budget, you can find a decent alternative for less.

14. Safety Technology International

The driveway from Safety Technology International uses a magnetometer sensor to detect cars effectively so that it won’t be triggered by animals or people passing by your property. When your home or business premises are breached, the device will play a voice message as an additional alert. You can also use multiple sensors with each receiver, making it easy to monitor a worksite with many entrances.

Key Features:

  • Wireless range: 1000 ft
  • Detection: 500 ft 
  • Expandability: Can have up to 4 sensors for each transmitter. 

Pros:

  • Batteries don’t need to be replaced. The transmitters are rechargeable via a solar panel built into the unit
  • You have a choice of 53 pre-programmed words in either English or Spanish
 for the voice message

Cons:

  • Short warranty period (1 year)

15. Driveway Informer Wireless Driveway Alarm

The sensors of the Driveway Informer are encased in an ABD mold casing that is designed to be weatherproof and durable. Although non-rechargeable batteries power the device, you won’t be replacing them too regularly because they’ll last for years, even for busy business premises. It’s also one of the only driveway alarm products made entirely in America.

Key Features:

  • Wireless range: 1000 ft
  • Detection: 40 ft 
  • Expandability: Can have up to 4 sensors for each transmitter. 

Pros:

  • Sensor batteries can last as long as 2 years
  • You can add accessories, like strobe lights and speakers to increase your alert options
  • The green-colored sensors blend discreetly into the landscape and are easy to conceal

Cons:

  • The transmission range could be better for the price

16. Govee Home Security Driveway Alarm

Established in 2017, Govee specializes in smart home devices and LED lighting solutions. Their driveway alarm does a great job of informing you of an approaching car or person. But it also works well as a doorbell and night light. You can adapt to the needs of your home or business with a choice of 36 alarm tones and 5 welcome songs. 

Key Features:

  • Wireless range: 918 ft
  • Detection: 26 ft
  • Expandability: Can use up to 2 sensors for each receiver

Pros:

  • Excellent for securing your indoor spaces, covered patios, garage door, and garden shed
  • Has multiple alert options, including various chimes and different colored LED light flashes
  • The kit is shipped with 2 sensors

Cons:

  • Not robust enough to be exposed to the elements. The device is easily set off by wind and direct sunlight

17. Bunker Hill Wireless Security Driveway Alert System

Bunker Hill’s no-frills driveway alert system won’t only work well at your main gate but is effective when positioned near other entryways, like a garage door or mounted on your porch at your entrance. 

Key Features:

  • Wireless range: 400 ft
  • Detection: 30 ft

Pros:

  • It’s one of the most affordable driveway alarm around
  • Both the sensor and chimer use AA batteries. No mains power needed

Cons:

  • No expandability. You can assign only one transmitter to one receiver

18. EasyAlarms Wireless Security Alarm

EasyAlarm’s driveway alarm can be set up in a matter of minutes. If all you want is a basic alarm system with no bells and whistles, it’s more than up for the job.

Key Features:

  • Wireless range: 400 ft
  • Detection: 20 ft
  • Expandability: Up to 4 transmitters for each receiver

Pros:

  • Offers uncomplicated security for your driveway, main entries, pool area, and more
  • Loud 110dB alert sound
  • Affordable entry-level price point

Cons:

  • The device has limited transmission range and expandability, so it’s not ideal for monitoring huge premises with multiple entrances

19. KERUI Long Range Wireless Driveway Alarm

KERUI’s driveway system gives you a choice of 16 alert sounds with 5 adjustable volume levels up to 100dB, so you’re sure to hear it if an intruder crosses its path.

Key Features:

  • Wireless range: 328 ft
  • Detection: 36 ft
  • Expandability: Can have up to 8 sensors to each receiver

Pros:

  • Has an extra-wide 90-degree sensing angle which can be adjusted with the covers included in the kit
  • Offers decent expandability for a product in this price range
  • Long battery life (12 months)

Cons:

  • Its short wireless range means you won’t be able to use it for larger properties.

20. WJLING Motion Sensor Alarm System

The WJLING alarm has a modern and streamlined design, which allows it to be positioned discreetly near your front or back door or indoors. You’ll get the best performance out of it if it is shielded from direct exposure to the elements.

Key Features:

  • Wireless range: 328 ft
  • Detection: 23 ft
  • Expandability: Supports multiple sensors on each receiver

Pros:

  • The receiver is portable, so you can take it with you as you move through your house or office

Cons:

  • It’s not waterproof

21. Easyreen 500ft Long-Range Wireless Driveway Alarm

If you want long-range transmission at an affordable price, you can’t go wrong with Easyreen’s driveway alarm. It works efficiently, even in rainy conditions, thanks to the fully enclosed design of the sensors.

Key Features:

  • Wireless range: 500 ft
  • Detection: 16 ft
  • Expandability: Can pair up to 58 sensors to a receiver

Pros: 

  • You can get alerted by choice of 58 tones and flashing LED lights
  • Competitively priced compared to brands that deliver similar functionality

Cons:

  • It may set off false alarms when exposed to direct sunlight

22. Mydome Wireless Driveway Alarm Sensor

Mydome is a UK-based manufacturer of smart home devices. Their driveway alarm has been designed keeping in mind the security needs of residential properties and medium-sized business premises.

Key Features:

  • Wireless range: 500 ft
  • Detection: 16 ft
  • Expandability: Can pair up to 50 sensors to a receiver

Pros:

  • Long battery life (up to 18 months), plus batteries are provided in the kit
  • Clearly audible 115dB alert sound

Cons:

  • The transmitter may not be able to withstand long-term outdoor placement

23. Navaris Wireless Driveway Alarm System

Navaris driveway alarm system provides decent security using a single receiver, transmitter, and remote control, all included in the kit.

Key Features:

  • Wireless range: 400 ft
  • Detection: 26 ft

Pros:

  • The sensor has an extra-wide 110-degree detection angle

Cons:

  • The kit doesn’t include batteries or the receiver’s DC power cord

24. DA-600, Wireless Driveway Alert/Alarm

The DA-600 driveway alarm from Ultra Secure is an excellent long-range and solar-powered device. However, it loses points due to its relatively high price compared to similar models that offer more complete kits.

Key Features:

  • Wireless range: 2000 ft
  • Detection: 50 ft
  • Expandability: Receiver can support up to 32 sensors

Pros:

  • Very good transmission range
  • Solidly built transmitters that are great for outdoor placement

Cons:

  • The base kit is shipped with only 1 sensor

25. SimLife Driveway Alert Motion Sensor

SimLife’s motion detector is a basic, easy-to-use alarm system. Its receiver has an on/off switch and two other buttons to select chime and adjust the volume. As simple as that!

Key Features:

  • Wireless range: 328 ft
  • Detection: 20 ft
  • Expandability: Can use 1 sensor with up to 2 receivers

Pros:

  • The kit is shipped with everything you need to get the alarm up and running, including 1 transmitter, 2 receivers, and batteries

Cons:

  • Not very sturdy. It will work better indoors or under covered entryways, like your front door or garage door

A Final Thought

Our ranking doesn’t cover all the driveway alarm available on the market, but we think they are certainly among the best you can find. We’re confident they’ll do an excellent job of securing your premises.

Driveway

Whether your driveway is made of concrete or asphalt, it will age and crack over time as the materials degrade. However, this degradation will occur much sooner than expected if you ignore or misuse your driveway.

So, if you’re considering replacing your driveway, you should first learn about the reasons for the degradation so you can take preventative measures.

In a nutshell, if your asphalt driveway is beginning to show signs of wear, then a replacement is the more sensible and lasting solution rather than repairing it.

But how do you replace asphalt driveway?

There is no time too late to learn something new. Concurrently, when it comes to replacing an asphalt driveway, there are many things that homeowners, business owners, and municipal personnel may not know.

So, when your asphalt ultimately wears out, and periodic repairs and maintenance can longer keep it safe, appealing, and smooth, then use the steps below to have it replaced:

  1. Demolition of an existing pavement 
  2. Grading and sloping the ground 
  3. Installation of the sub base to provide a stable surface
  4. Tack coating the sub base to create a solid bond between the incoming asphalt layer and the sub base
  5. Laying and compacting of asphalt

Many things might cause driveway damage, including icing materials, motor oil or gas, freezing temperatures, and your vehicle’s weight. In most circumstances, replacing an asphalt driveway is a better investment than making hasty repairs or resurfacing, which will only serve you for just a few years but end up costing you more in the long run. 

Asphalt driveways that have been properly replaced can last 20 years or more; however, resurfacing, which isn’t a good option, can only last 3-7 years.

Signs your asphalt driveway needs repairs

Signs your asphalt driveway needs repairs

The present condition of your driveway surface can tell a lot about whether you should resurface it or do a complete overhaul and replacement. The following guide will lead you through some of the warning indications that you need to replace asphalt driveway for your property:

 Standing water

Potholes, large cracks, and portions of a sunken asphalt driveway can all collect rainwater. So, if you allow water to penetrate the foundation of your driveway, it can result in permanent structural damage.

At the same time, standing water can trigger the surface of your driveway to erode if it cannot drain correctly. Although standing water is not only an indication of structural damage, it can also lead to more pavement issues if left unchecked.

In a nutshell, poor drainage can signal that you need to replace your driveway. 

Alligator cracks 

 When a sequence of overlapping cracks appears in your driveway, they begin to separate the pavement into small, fragmented portions. This issue is what is referred to as alligator cracking.

This type of crack could indicate that the subbase beneath your pavement is no longer stable. And when this lower layer breaks, it can lead to damage to the surface layer. 

If this type of problem occurs, it is an indication that it’s time to rip out the old driveway and replace it with a new sub-base and topcoat. 

Raveling

Asphalt is made up of a binder and aggregate mix. However, the aggregate can break away from the binder with time. This is evident when loose gravel is on the driveway’s surface, or you may notice that your driveway is beginning to pit.

Raveling can be treated, so address it right away if you notice it early enough because if the situation isn’t addressed, it can quickly become out of hand. Initially, raveling loosens fine aggregate particles, but the surface gets rougher when larger pieces split away. You can either choose to replace asphalt driveway if resurfacing or seal coating can not remedy the issue. 

Missing chunks

Large cracks that evolve into alligator cracks can rip pieces of your driveway apart, leading to large potholes, which is the last thing anyone wants on their asphalt. 

These spots are hazardous to automobiles and small children or homeowners who may fall or injure themselves when crossing the driveway.

Therefore, if you notice a larger chunk falling off your driveway, it may be time to replace your asphalt driveway.

When Should You Seal, Resurface, or Replace Your Asphalt Driveway?

When Should You Seal, Resurface, or Replace Your Asphalt Driveway?


Resurfacing, seal coating, or replacing is what you should consider before your driveway issues get any worse.

Here are more details on when your asphalt driveway should be sealed, resurfaced, or replaced, so you can figure out which type of repairs your property requires:

Sealcoat

Sealcoating is the process of applying a liquid sealant to an old asphalt pavement surface in order to seal it and fill cracks. The procedure protects the sublayers and base from the elements while also delaying the need for a new driveway.

You should consider seal coating if the lustrous appearance of your asphalt driveway is fading. You should also consider applying a sealant if there are minor surface flaws, like cracks, that render your driveway uneven or rough in appearance.

Resurface

Resurfacing is the process of removing the top layer of asphalt and replacing it with a new one. Resurfacing your driveway can help it last an additional eight to fifteen years. It is different from when a contractor replace asphalt driveway.

When your driveway has enormous ruts, significant cracks, and potholes but is still functional, you should consider resurfacing it.

Repaving

When an asphalt driveway is replaced, the whole surface is demolished and removed to the ground level. All of it will be taken out and replaced with new material.

So, if your driveway has been fully damaged by negligence, weather, or heavy use to the extent where it is no longer functional, you will require a complete replacement. Concurrently, you can also consider a replacement if you want to make substantial modifications to your property. For example, suppose you want to shift your driveway to a different location. 

Installing a new driveway offers a smooth,  comfortable, safe surface that you will enjoy every day.

What is the Cost to Replace Asphalt Driveways

Asphalt driveways typically cost between $2 and $5 per sq foot to lay. However, many factors influence the pricing, including location, material quality, the required depth of material, driveway size, and contractor.

Asphalt driveway installation costs around half as much as concrete, making it a cost-effective choice for homeowners looking to make the most of their budget. This price may be the same or differ from when you want to replace asphalt driveway; ultimately, a seasoned paving contractor can advise you accordingly.

Conclusion

Replacement is a good choice, especially if your asphalt driveway has deteriorated to the extent that it can not be managed. However, it is wise if you seek the assistance of an expert paving contractor to advise you accordingly. A professional contractor will advise you on the exact installation cost, the perfect timing for the project and can also help you carry out the project so it can withstand the test of time.

A home built atop a hill may provide breathtaking vistas, but it also presents unique obstacles when it comes to landscaping the driveway.

Gravel is one of the simplest and most effective materials for paving surfaces that would support both foot and vehicle traffic because of its low cost and low maintenance needs. As a result, lots of homeowners and business owners alike make use of gravel driveways and pathways. 

Having a sloped driveway as a homeowner or business owner can be difficult to maintain, especially if you wish to use gravel. Gravel exhibits particular characteristics when it is used in a driveway, and having it on a slope can compound these concerns.

To some people, gravel can not be used to pave a sloping driveway due to its propensity to migrate, disperse, and shift. There may also be fears that the gravel can be washed downhill if it rains heavily.

However, if your question is whether gravel can be laid on a slope, then the answer is yes. At the same time, to mitigate the common problems known with gravel when used on a slope, all you have to do is use the right materials and install them correctly.

So, what are the ways to keep a gravel driveway on a slope?

Below are a few methods to keep gravel driveways on a slope

  1. Build a Gravel Base Layer
  2. Form a Crown to Your Gravel Roadway or Driveway
  3. Create Proper Drainage
  4. Use a Gravel Grid
  5. Control Gravel With a Border

Many of these techniques can be used together to build a long-lasting surface that is resistant to erosion, flooding, ruts, and slippage. This will save you a lot of time and effort when it comes to raking or re-grading gravel surfaces.

Gravel is not the best material for a slope, even a 1:12 slope, as specified by the ADA for wheelchair ramps. It is, however, still possible, especially if you use a grid to hold the foundation layer in place and use the appropriate gravel.

gravel driveways on a slope

Why is it difficult to have gravel driveways on a slope?

The truth is that gravel material moves with time, making it usually unfeasible for a driveway on a slope. Naturally, gravel will roll downhill when driven over, and also when it rains. If you don’t use stabilizers, it won’t stay put.

When gravel is spread in a typical manner on a sloping gravel driveway (that’s a gravel surface dressing applied right on top of the sub-base material), it can result in the following three issues:

Problem 1- Gravel migration

When gravel is spread straight on a slope without the use of a stabilizer, the gravel appears to migrate towards the base or lowest section of the slope after some time of use. This issue is particular with gravel driveways or slopes where automobiles use regularly. 

As the gravel that’s migrated to the base of the driveway gets deeper and less stable, it becomes more difficult to drive or walk over. This deep section of gravel then migrates again across surrounding surfaces with increased pedestrian and vehicular traffic. The size and type of gravel utilized can exacerbate this migration. However, building a gravel driveway on a slope can still be accomplished.

A larger rounded pea or river gravel of 200mm will probably migrate much farther compared to smaller angular gravel of 10mm. As the loose gravel split out of the start of the slope or the entrance of the gravel driveway, the whole thing will start to look like a mess. This loose gravel is then either subsequently crushed under vehicle weight against the driveway, or ground into various surfaces, much like a tarmac road surface.

Problem 2 – Loss of surface gravel dressing

When gravel migrates, it leads to loss of gravel from the slope or driveway, exposing the sub-base material. So, if you want the surface to keep looking the way it should be, then more and more gravel ought to be placed and scattered over the surface to restore the lost gravel, and the round of gravel migration and loss begins again. This develops into a long-term maintenance problem that will recur. 

Problem 3 – Formation of ruts and potholes

Ruts and potholes can form in the sub-base due to a combination of gravel movement, exposure of the material sub-base, and loss of gravel. In addition, rainwater washing down the slope, especially in severe downpours, can begin to wash the foundation of the subsurface, including some of the smaller particles, contributing to the development of ruts and potholes. The problem worsens with time as vehicles continue to travel over the same areas of the sloping driveway.

This issue is peculiar with gravel driveway on a slope, and it can not be resolved by simply adding more gravel; instead, the potholes and ruts ought to be covered with even more sub-base material, re-graded, and compressed before placing the gravel surface dressing. This, however, does not solve the problem in the long run, since the same problem will repeat in the same spots on the hill.

gravel driveway on a slope

Number of ways to keep gravel driveways on a slope

Although it seems impracticable to build a gravel driveway on a hill, still there are methods to adopt in order to construct a stabilized sloped driveway using gravel

Several of these techniques can be utilized together, to form a long-lasting surface that is resistant to ruts, erosion, slippage, and flooding. The following are a few methods to consider:

  • Build a Gravel Base Layer
  • Form a Crown to Your Gravel Roadway or Driveway
  • Create Proper Drainage
  • Use a Gravel Grid
  • Control Gravel With a Border

Build a Gravel Base Layer

When constructing a gravel driveway or roadways on an uphill, it’s vital to build it to an 8–10 inches depth. This can be performed by using heavy machinery to excavate and grade the proposed roadway or driveway, or by placing gravel over an existing material with the intention to install a border after the gravel is in place. 

Ensure you do the following when constructing a gravel driveway or roadway on a slope so it can withstand vehicle and foot traffic without slipping:

  • Excavate up to 8-12 inches and grade the driveway. Another option is to grade the site and plan to confine gravel once it is laid. This makes the gravel driveway on a slope to be more stable.
  • At this point, plan and build any culverts you want to run beneath the gravel.
  • Distribute 4 inches of #3 crushed rock or stone, then roll it out to compact 
  • Scatter 4 inches of crushed stone #57 on the ground, then roll it out again to attain compaction.
  • Finally, distribute 4 inches of crushed stone #411 on the ground, then roll to compact it.

It is worthy of note that your gravel should be laid in layers, with the use of a lawn roller in order to compact each layer. Migrating from large to smaller gravel is essential for constructing a long-lasting gravel base, which enables adequate drainage and compaction, increasing the durability and making the area more resistant to flooding.

Form a Crown to Your Gravel Roadway or Driveway

When gravel is being installed, make sure it is not laid in a flat or level layer from one side to the next. Because doing this results in a water pool and increases the likelihood of gravel rolling downhill. Instead, construct your driveway or roadway with a larger elevation in the middle that gently falls to the sides. This ridge, or “crown,” will direct rainwater away from your gravel, keeping it dry and secure.

In addition, make sure you do the following if using this method:

  • Create a crown along the middle of the driveway or roadway when layering and compressing the gravel.
  • On either side of the crown, gradually slide the gravel downward.
  • The crown should stand 3–6 inches above the margins.
  • This crown will aid your gravel in shedding water and resisting erosion caused by water. Besides, it helps stabilize your gravel driveway on a slope even more.

It would be a tremendous plus if you can help your gravel shed water in any way. Vehicle activity on a waterlogged or soggy section of gravel is one of the most common causes for gravel to slide downhill.

gravel driveway on a slope

Create Proper Drainage

Gravel slides downhill or forms deep ruts as a result of flooding and washouts. A dry gravel driveway or roadway has a much better chance of staying put. So, if you’re constructing a new gravel driveway, it is ideal to install concrete culverts under the gravel to send water beneath the gravel away, rather than over the top. In addition, you can dig a trench drain across existing gravel driveways or roadways to keep them dry.

Make sure you do the following if you are adopting this method:

  • Ascertain where water from the hill runs onto the gravel driveway.
  • To catch the water before it hits the gravel, ensure you dig a drainage trench; downhill is the way to go.
  • If you’re laying a new gravel roadway or driveway, make sure to place culvert pipes below the gravel in flood-prone locations.
  • Channel your drainage trenches to route water via culverts if you have them beneath your gravel already.

The excellent thing is that since your gravel is set on a slope, you have the perfect setting for digging drainage trenches that safely move water down before it puddles on your gravel. This makes it easier to avoid flooding and washout than it would be in flat places.

Use a Gravel Grid

Another great method to keep a gravel driveway on a slope is to install a geotextile or plastic grid prior to pouring gravel. The grid’s honeycomb construction creates many “cups” that catch and hold the gravel in place. In addition, anchor the grid to the soil with rebar stakes or any similar implement prior to placing gravel if you want to achieve extra stability.

Take note of the following:

  • To hold gravel in place, use a plastic grid
  • It’s critical to anchor a gravel grid to the ground before spreading gravel; else, both the grid and the gravel may slide.
  • Fill your grid with crushed stone #3 (which is a 1/2–2 inch gravel mix) after it has been installed.

Fill the gravel grid with #3 crushed stone and then top it over with smaller gravel like #57 and #411 to create a finer, more compact gravel driveway or roadway. Even on a steep uphill, this system will remain in place.

Control Gravel With a Border

Gravel can be contained and kept from sliding by using a border of stones, bricks, or pavers. In addition, this small wall will restrict the gravel from moving outward if you’ve constructed a deep gravel base. Don’t be concerned about the boundary acting as a water trap because flooding will not be an issue if you’ve constructed gravel from a variety of sizes and installed drainage with it.

To achieve the best result with this method, do ensure the following are in place:

  • To keep your gravel driveway on a slope contained, ensure you line it with stones, concrete, or even wood.
  • Your gravel can be prevented from spreading by a border, which can also keep it stable and compacted sufficiently to avoid slipping downhill.
  • A border will not raise the risk of flooding if the gravel is correctly constructed with a good drainage system.

Borders can be appealing features for your property in addition to keeping your gravel in place. A well-marked and bordered driveway looks far nicer than a jagged gravel driveway that ends on both sides.

gravel driveway on a slope

How Is Gravel Applied?

Anytime you want to carry out the application of gravel on your driveway or roadway, ensure you use the three sizes of gravel available. There are three strata; the first of which consists of baseball-sized rocks, or #3 stones as they are known in the industry.

The first layer establishes a solid base for your driveway while also ensuring proper drainage. Typically, the first layer is 4 inches thick.

Another layer of 3-4 inches golf-ball-sized boulders makes up the second layer. These are the common #57 rocks which are the best gravel for a sloped driveway. The transition between the first layer and the top layer is formed by these rocks.

The uppermost layer is made up of marble-sized rocks of various colors. It all boils down to the stone you select. Also, note that each layer will require machine crushed stone.

Conclusion

Lots of property owners hold the assertion that it is almost impracticable to keep a gravel driveway on a slope due to the migration characteristics of gravel. While this belief may not be far from the truth, it is still possible to build a stabilized driveway on a slope using gravel. 

If the proper method is adopted, your sloped driveway can be constructed with gravel and it can still be as stabilized and durable as it is with the leveled ground. In all, ensure you contact a professional paving contractor if you are planning to embark on such a project for your residential property or business area.