Concrete Driveway Repair Contractors

Is it Time to Repair or Replace your Driveway?

Driveways are something people take notice of only when they are damaged. Often after winters, people find their driveways in a bad shape due to the freeze-thaw cycle. Apart from winters, there are several other reasons like age, traffic, use of chemicals, etc. that can deteriorate your driveway. While concrete is one of the most durable materials, it is still prone to degradation. Although minor surface cracks are a common scene, large cracks leave you to contemplate over whether to repair or replace your driveway. In most cases, people prefer repairs as it is the most cost-effective way, but there are times when replacement is the only option. Before arriving at a decision, you must consider these factors to make the best suitable choice.

Driveway Cracking

Cracking is a natural occurrence on any concrete driveway. Long, thin lines eventually start appearing as your driveway ages. However, not all cracks call for replacement. Most often repair is the best option when dealing with hairline surface breaks. Although, sometimes these breaks may not indicate the damage underneath.

To determine repair or replacement you can test the width of the crack. If the crack is smaller than a quarter inch wide, filling it with a patching material and resurfacing or resealing will fix the issue. However, if the crack is wider that a quarter inch then replacement is the best solution. While patching can temporarily fix it, replacement will eventually be needed. In the case of spiderweb cracks, resembling an extremely damaged driveway, you will need replacement.

Age of your Driveway

People tend to invest in concrete because of its durable and lasting nature. However, whatever the material used, driveways are prone to deterioration with aging. Concrete usually has a life of about 30 years. If you notice damage at or near this time, replacement is usually the solution, especially if the frequency of the damage is high.

Potholes

Potholes occur as a result of expansion and contraction cycle occurring underneath the surface of your driveway. They are most likely to occur during winters but can occur even otherwise. Minor cracks through which water seeps can force a freeze-thaw cycle forming potholes. The additional traffic and weather abuse can cause these potholes to damage your driveway. Fixing a pothole depends on how big it is. Huge potholes may call for a full replacement, while if noticed at an early stage you can save the expense through repairs.

While you cannot prevent naturally occurring forces like weather and aging, you can take measures to protect and retain your driveway’s longevity and appearance. Giving it time to cure when installed, regular cleaning, resealing every few years, and attending minor cracks are a few ways in which you can maintain your driveway. While the above-mentioned tips can help you analyze whether to repair or replace your driveway, it is best to consult a professional paving service to arrive at the best solution for your driveway’s condition.

Edmonton Driveway Paving

Best Type of Gravel for your Driveway

Being a vital part of your home’s exterior, a well-constructed driveway can enhance the aesthetics of your property. Different types of materials like asphalt, concrete, pavers, and gravel are used for constructing a driveway. As one of the most affordable options, gravel driveways can add a charm to your home’s aesthetics. There are different types of gravels available to choose from. The choice of gravel can affect the installation and longevity of your driveway. Hence, choosing the right type of gravel is vital for a strong and durable surface. Being aware of the different types of gravel in relation to the installation process can help you select the best type of gravel for your driveway.

Which Type of Gravel Should be Chosen?

Gravel driveways are composed of different layers. Each layer comprises of different sized gravels and serves its own purpose. You need to make sure each layer has the appropriate type of gravel for good installation and durability.

  • The first layer or foundation, which is a 4-inch layer, must consist of baseball sized rocks. These rocks form a strong foundation as they provide good drainage and prevent smaller rocks from disappearing into the soil.

  • Over the base, you must place another 3-4-inch layer of golf ball sized rocks. These smaller gravels serve similar functions as the ones in the base. They also fit well against the larger gravels in the foundation, forming a strong base for a driveway.

  • The top layer must consist of another 4-inch layer of marble-sized rocks that may vary in color depending on the type of stone.

It is best to use machine crushed stone rather than round rock for each layer of your gravel driveway. The machine crushed stone, usually has an angular shape that locks together to form a strong surface. Round rocks usually slip, creating an unstable surface. For the top layer, you can find a variety of gravels to choose from that can enhance the aesthetics of your property. Some of the different types include:

Crushed Stone

This is a type of material that closely represents a typical gravel driveway. Crushed stones are sized to ideally suit the construction and surfacing of your residential driveway. They can be comprised of limestone, granite, or trap rock depending on the quarry. The blend of gray and white shades makes these stones perfect for any landscape.

Pea Gravel

One of the most popular types, pea gravel is used for a number of residential driveways. These gravels feature a variety of colors like tan, brown, white, gray, green, blue, and red, and are typically small, smooth, and round in appearance. Their aesthetically pleasing qualities, in terms of texture and colors, make them one of the most popular choices.

White Marble Chips

Unlike their name, marble chips are not necessarily white but can add a touch of elegance to your property. This type, consist of streaks of gray combined with white to add to their visual appeal. Their shimmery and sparkling appearance reflect sunlight and prevent the property from being overheated.

While choosing the right type of gravel for your driveway is important, proper installation is equally vital. Hence, it is best to consult a professional paving company to guide you on the best type of gravel for a lasting and aesthetically pleasing driveway.

Concrete Companies Edmonton Alberta

How to Maintain your Concrete Driveway

Concrete driveways are common features in many homes. Concrete is often favored because of the several benefits it offers. They not only enhance your home’s curb appeal but are also a cost-effective, low maintenance, and durable option. However, once you have a concrete driveway installed, it is up to you to ensure it lasts long. Over the years, the weather, sunlight, and traffic can take a toll on your concrete driveway. Hence in order to retain its appeal and longevity, you need to maintain your concrete driveway. Implementing these tips will ensure your concrete driveway retains its aesthetics and durability for years.

Keep it Clean

One of the easiest ways to keep your concrete strong and attractive is to clean it regularly. Use a simple power washer to remove any dirt and debris buildup. Any stains from grease, oil or gas must be cleaned immediately. While sealants do protect your concrete driveway from staining, it only does so if they are removed immediately. If not cleaned, the stains can cause discoloration and unattractive patches. Hence, to retain your driveway’s appealing aesthetics, you must clean it regularly.

Reseal your Driveway as Required

When your concrete driveway is installed, a sealant is applied after the concrete is set in order to protect it. Concrete sealers help preserve the surface of your driveway by preventing water from getting into the surface and damaging it. However, even the best sealant will gradually wear down due to traffic and time. Hence, you will need to reseal your driveway surface to maintain its durability. Typically, you must reseal your driveway every three to five years, but it also depends on the usage.

Repair Small Cracks

Small cracks can occur due to certain naturally occurring forces as well as traffic and weather abuse. If left unrepaired, these cracks can eventually widen and weaken your concrete surface. This may lead to costly repairs and replacement. In order to avoid this, it is best to use concrete patching products to repair small cracks.

Avoid Salt and Deicers

Chemical deicers and salt can eat away your concrete surface and cause it to deteriorate. Using salt and deicers to melt ice during winters can cause the concrete surface to spall off. It can also get into cracks and joints, forcing a freeze-thaw cycle that could further damage your driveway by widening the cracks. To retain your driveway, it is preferable to use sand to maintain traction during winter.

Exercise Caution while Shoveling

You must implement caution while shoveling and plowing your driveway during winters. It is best to avoid sharp equipment, like shovels that have metal blades, which can scratch your concrete driveway. Even if you use a snow blower, make sure you raise the blades high enough to avoid scraping your driveway. In spite of exercising caution, there are chances you accidently damage your driveway. Hence, it is best to hire a snow removal service to ensure your driveway is clear of snow without any damage being caused to your driveway.

Implementing these tips can help you retain your driveway’s aesthetics and strength and enhance its longevity. While you can maintain your concrete driveway with these basic tasks, consulting a professional concrete paving company is preferable for the best results.