When it comes to hard surfaces for driveways and other similar applications you generally have two choices: asphalt or concrete. Although both types of materials create similar surfaces, there are some key differences that need to be considered before making a final decision on what to work with.
Some of the considerations you have to take into account when it comes to asphalt vs. concrete are appearance, climate factors, cost and maintenance. Both of these materials have proven to be great choices but there are clear pros and cons that come with each. Dive into this guide for more information on each!
Asphalt Pros and Cons
Asphalt is one the most common materials used for driveways and roads, creating a reliable surface. Asphalt is often referred to as blacktop because of it’s dark color. It is made from a combination of stone and sand fused together from material left over from the production of gasoline, diesel and kerosene.
- Pros of asphalt
- Relatively cheap and is much cheaper than concrete.
- Less likely to crack from winter conditions and allows for easier snow removal.
- Because of its dark color it won’t show stains easily.
- Repair is easy as it can be repaired or re-layered and does not need to be replaced.
- Can be tinted.
- Cons of asphalt
- Relatively short lifespan
- Needs to be resurfaced and maintained throughout the years.
- Has an oily texture that softens in heat and sunlight.
- Has rough edges.
Concrete Pros and Cons
Concrete is another hard surface material that is commonly used in driveways and other hard surface applications. Concrete is created from a mixture of sand and gravel.
- Pros of concrete
- Has a long lifespan – between 30-40 years.
- Low maintenance as it does not need to be resealed, especially in warmer climates.
- Better in warm climates as it does not soften.
- Can be colored and scored
- Cons of concrete
- Prone to cracking and is not easy to repair.
- Salt will damage it.
- Due to its light color, it stains very easily and shows every color.
- Cost is very high, even twice as high as asphalt.
Asphalt vs. Concrete – Choose One
If you are looking for a hard surface application, you are going to have to generally decide between these two. So which one should you choose? Let’s wrap up some major points for each.
- Concrete lasts longer when installed properly and generally does not need to be maintained regularly
- Concrete will eventually crack, even in warmer climates. Since it really can’t be repaired you may be stuck replacing a concrete surface long before its time, if the cracks are too bad.
- Asphalt can be tinted and made to look very pleasing, similar to concrete.
- Asphalt does need to be resurfaced and maintained throughout the years
- In areas where it snows, even occasionally, asphalt is easier to deal with.
Asphalt vs. Concrete – A Close Call
Before starting your project, consider the pros and cons of each material to find the one that works best for your specific needs. While both materials have good and bad traits to them, each of them can provide you with what you need to create a reliable and functioning surface.
Here at Braen Stone, our experts can offer you the support you need to choose the right material for your project. We offer competitive, wholesale pricing on all our material and they can be delivered in bulk to areas throughout parts of NJ, NY, NYC and PA. Contact us today to get started!