Dependant on where you are located, you may have the ability to choose form a number of different options when the time comes to install a new driveway. There are a number of different factors to consider when installing a driveway and often you will find that the solution you are after chooses itself, however you may also have the ability to pick and choose at will (lucky you).
The benefits of a concrete driveway.
As with all concrete products, you will receive what the product is known for – something that is hard, durable and sturdy. This ability helps it to take weight of the vehicles that will be using it and not break and by its very nature will last a long time in all types of weather. This also means that if poured correctly, that the driveway will require very little work and maintenance over the year. What little work you may require will normally be cleaning the surface, which can normally be done quickly and cheaply with a water pressure sprayer or gurney.
There is also the ability to choose the look and texture of the surface, allowing a smooth finish or an more rougher, aggregate finish. If you have steep slopes or require traction for your vehicle, a rougher, more pebbly appearance may be sought, however this can make cleaning a little harder as dirt and grime becomes more difficult to wash off (albeit not by much if you have the right equipment as above). For a little extra money, you can also choose patterned or coloured concrete to add to the aesthetic qualities of the area.
Concrete may also be moulded to a particular shape, and poured in one day, allowing you to fit the slab around gardens and other edges that may require curving. Longer slabs may require to be cut to allow for movement.
The negatives of a concrete driveway
There are some negatives to concrete. Firstly if you are in desperate need of an area to drive on, once the work has been completed, there is always a delay while the concrete sets, which means it may not be applicable for emergency jobs. It can also be a more expensive method of providing a driveway, as you are paying for the concrete driveway and the labour, though that cost is often saved over the years by requiring little maintenance and upkeep, and you will unlikely have to re-provide a new driveway for a long length of time. Concrete also has the ability to crack. Regardless of how well its prepared, dependant on weather and soil type, concrete may get cracks in it, especially on even land. This is one cost that can happen after it has been laid, as it is difficult to repair. Finally, once it is poured, it is poured. If for some reason you have to remove the driveway, you change your mind or you need to get at a water main or other supply to the house, it is difficult to remove, and likely needs to be replaced once it has been done so.
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