You’re driving down the street headed home. What’s the first thing you see when you pull up to your house? Your driveway. First impressions are everything! Choosing the right driveway for your home is no longer a boring task. If you’ve been in the market for a new driveway, you’re in luck. When you come home, would you love to see a vast array of colors and shapes greeting you and accentuating the beauty of your home before you ever even step inside? Maybe you have always loved the beauty of colored pavers or perhaps exposed aggregate concrete. So how do you know which option would be right for you? Let’s start with the basics.
Ashphalt AKA Blacktop Driveways
Asphalt a.k.a. blacktop offers the lowest up-front cost but will require the most maintenance in the long run. Six months after installation it will need to be sealed, then every 3-5 years after that you can expect to maintain it. It can take years to fully cure. If you do not maintain asphalt properly it can crack apart and look unsightly. Asphalt holds up well in the northeast which is why it is commonly seen in these parts because of its ability to with stand hard freezes and thaw periods. The black color attracts the heat from the sun and aids in the melting of the ice and snow. If properly maintained asphalt can last 20-30 years.
Concrete is a great way to get decorative on a budget. The possibilities are endless here, concrete can be tinted or stained to almost any color you’d like but be warned, light colored concrete will show oil stains and require regular cleaning. There are fun things you can do with concrete like stamping or etching shapes and designs or even giving it a brushed look, which is dual purpose and will give you better traction when walking on it. Then there is my personal favorite in the world of concrete…. Exposed aggregate! There is something so calming and natural about a rocky look and I love it! The downside to this is that concrete does not hold up well to the snowy, icy conditions we face here in Vermont. It will also have to be sealed periodically and if in the event it does crack, concrete is unforgiving and often shows where the damage was done. It will last about 30 years or so if it is maintained well and is in the right conditions.
Now, onto the king of driveways. Pavers! Pavers are installed by hand and therefore labor intensive and end up having the highest up-front costs. They typically take about 5-7 days to install but can be driven on immediately upon completion. Pavers have the lowest maintenance cost between the three options so you end up getting your money’s worth in the end. The sky is the limit when it comes to pavers, they come in a wide variety of shapes, sizes and colors. You can choose from cobblestone, marble, concrete and even travertine materials! The color used in pavers won’t fade over time. Pavers produce less water run-off making it environmentally friendly because it releases less pollutants back into our lakes and streams! With this blessing comes a curse, when it comes time to shovel snow it can be a tedious task. There are open spaces and grooves where snow and ice can become trapped making it a little harder to remove as opposed to a smooth surface. Pavers hold up well to the cold and ice won’t make them crack like concrete.
Driveway Design, Installation & More in Greater Morrisville, Stowe & Lamoille County, Vermont
No matter what driveway surface material you choose, Matt Myette Landscaping can install it for you. And if you aren’t sure what you would like, we offer design consultations to help you decide! Contact Matt Myette Landscaping today!