These days, the vast majority of driveways that you encounter are either lined in asphalt or concrete. As experienced commercial concrete and asphalt contractors of the Philadelphia area, we’re inclined to say a few words on this subject. Chances are, if you’ve never invested in your driveway, it’s probably concrete. Now a question naturally follows: “Can I simply lay asphalt over concrete?” The short answer is: “Yes!” The longer answer is, in fact, a question: “What’s your driveway elevation like?”
The Problem with Overlaying
Now, assuming that your driveway has the elevation that allows for asphalt to be layered over concrete, we have to talk about site preparation. Because concrete is strengthened by laying a thicker slab, some contractors overlook the ground and bedrock itself. If the earth beneath your driveway tends to shift or sink, laying asphalt over concrete may not be that prudent.
If digging into the bedrock isn’t done, an asphalt-concrete driveway may prove too unstable to handle any weight or excessive usage. Any expansion joints deep within the concrete will rear themselves as cracks in the asphalt, ruining your newly paved driveway. In some cases, shifts underground can even cause cracks across the surface of the driveway.
The Pros of Pure Asphalt
Now that we’re starting from scratch, no concrete, there’s plenty of advantages to asphalt driveways. Unlike concrete driveways, asphalt can be laid in one to two days max. If it’s not too cold outside, your driveway will be ready for driving a mere two days after that. With a concrete paving, you’re looking at a minimum of two weeks before you can start utilizing it.
Durability and Longevity
As a paving material, asphalt has the inherent advantage of not flaking. We in the trade call this phenomenon “spalling”—and we can assure you that it’s no fun. If concrete isn’t mixed or prepared properly, surface flaking can easily occur. On the occasion that a crack appears on an asphalt driveway, repairing the crack is relatively simple. Any home retailers you visit are likely to carry crack sealants. While you could do this sort of preventative maintenance yourself, you do have a friend in the Associated Paving Contractors of Bucks County, PA (as well as surrounding areas). Whether it’s roll-off dumpster rentals or asphalt driveways, we pave, repair, and do it all!