Concrete is the most popular material for driveways, and for good reason. Concrete driveways are strong, long-lasting, and require minimal maintenance. The combination of all these features makes it an excellent value when paving larger areas. As far as costs go, it comes in the middle of the paving materials lineup as it is more expensive than asphalt or gravel, but still far less than brick or cobblestone. It also lasts longer making it the clear winner when it comes to paving materials for driveways.
Some have considered one of the downsides of using concrete is its underwhelming appearance. However, with recent trends of colored or stamped concrete, this is no longer an issue. Even concrete driveways can now be beautiful and complimentary to your home.
Concrete Driveway Maintenance
Most people think of concrete driveways as requiring no maintenance. It’s true that they require a minimal amount of maintenance. However, if you want to get the longest life out of your concrete driveway there are a few things you can to help extend its life, and those two things are simply keeping your concrete driveway clean and sealed.
Keeping your driveway scrubbed down with a hose and a stiff brush will take care of the job as far as cleaning is concerned while adding concrete sealer will help extend its life. You don’t have to do this often. Once a year should be enough. Optimally, applying the sealer in the fall before winter weather is best as it helps protect it from extreme winter weather and road salts.
Concrete Driveway Longevity and Costs
You can expect to get anywhere from 25 to 50 years out of your new concrete driveway dependant on how well it was built and if they have been maintained over the years by applying sealant. The cost of a concrete driveway will vary greatly on whether or not you choose to go with a colored or stamped finish. Also, expect to pay a little more if demolition of the previous slab is required.
Pros and Cons of Owning a Concrete Driveway
When you consider the longevity that a concrete driveway lasts you realize how affordable an option that concrete really is. Since a typical concrete driveway can last 50 years or more with proper maintenance the majority of people only ever have a concrete driveway installation performed once in their entire time owning a home.
Concrete is not a very DIY friendly type of job. Pouring a new concrete driveway requires hard labor and training to properly perform. Therefore, you will want to hire a professional to handle the installation for you. Although, this may be considered a pro rather than a con to some people.