Investing in a new driveway can add value to your home. It can also improve its curb appeal and provide a safe surface for vehicles.
A cracked driveway can often be repaired with resealing and patching. However, cracks that are more than a quarter-inch wide may indicate significant issues.
A good foundation is essential for the longevity of a driveway surface. A professional Concrete Contractors Colorado Springs can help you determine if a replacement is necessary.
Cracks And Potholes
There’s nothing worse than pulling into your driveway on a beautiful summer day to find yourself facing the dreaded pothole. Cracks and potholes are not only unsightly, but they can also cause significant damage to your vehicle’s tires.
While it’s impossible to completely prevent cracks in your concrete or asphalt driveway, a few simple maintenance steps can help reduce the appearance and severity of these problems. The first step is to regularly wash your driveway with a pressure washer to remove any dirt or debris. You can also use a garden tool or broom to remove any weeds growing in the cracks.
If you notice that your driveway is displaying signs of serious damage, the next step is to call in a professional for a full inspection. The severity of a driveway crack can be determined by its width and depth. Cracks thinner than an eighth of an inch are usually considered hairline and can often be repaired using a good quality driveway sealer that has a fill-and-seal capacity. However, cracks that are much wider or deeper than this could be indicative of frost upheaval, drainage issues, or significant damage from heavy vehicles and should be patched by a professional right away.
Potholes are often caused by water seepage into your driveway’s surface and underlying subbase. Over time, this moisture freezes, thaws, and refreezes repeatedly, which can lead to the surface breaking down and eventually forming a hole. This is why it’s important to seal your driveway annually and every few years for asphalt driveways.
Keeping your driveway properly maintained can also prevent these problems by making sure the surface is smooth and free of holes, bumps, divots, and cracks. Proper maintenance includes sweeping the driveway regularly to remove loose dirt, leaves, and other debris from the surface and helping water flow correctly away from your home and down the drains.
If you do notice a pothole in your driveway, the first step is to dig down into it with a shovel and remove any debris or grass that’s trapped inside. After that, you can fill the pothole with coarse gravel up to three inches below the surface of your driveway and compact it using a steel tamper or 4×4 wood post. Finally, you can repair the pothole with cold mix asphalt, which is easy to apply and works well in any weather.
Asphalt is prone to damage, but it can be repaired. Small hairline cracks and rutting are normal, but larger ones can allow water, oil, and other contaminants to penetrate the surface and degrade it over time. This leads to deterioration, and if it goes unrepaired, the driveway can become damaged beyond repair and even collapse.
Staining is another problem that can ruin the appearance of your driveway, but it can be corrected with a concrete cleaner. These are available at most home improvement stores and can be sprayed or brushed on the affected areas. If the staining is caused by a spill, it’s essential to clean it up immediately to avoid letting it seep into the subsurface and cause more damage.
When the surface of your driveway becomes pitted or rough, it’s a sign that it’s time to have it resurfaced. An asphalt resurfacing contractor will add a new layer of asphalt to the existing surface, restoring it to its original condition. The process is quick, inexpensive, and very effective.
A badly damaged driveway may also have exposed utility lines, which pose a danger to anyone who uses it. If this is the case, it’s important to contact a professional for emergency services. In some cases, a contractor may need to dig up the driveway and replace it with a new one.
Driveway surfaces need a strong base and aggregate layer to support the weight of vehicles and other elements that can put pressure on the structure. If the foundation isn’t correctly installed, it can crack and shift over time. This can be due to poor construction or because the soil beneath it is softer than it should be.
A professional can install a new base and aggregate layer, and then lay a new surface of asphalt. This is usually a more economical solution than replacing the entire driveway, and it can be done quickly to minimize disruption to your property. If your driveway has heaved or subsided in large sections, however, it’s probably best to have the structure completely replaced.
A driveway is one of the first things that visitors see, so it’s important to keep the look clean and tidy. A driveway can be enhanced with pavers, trees, shrubs, and flower beds that complement the home’s architecture and landscaping. These elements create a harmonious whole that enhances the overall curb appeal of the property.
Incorporating greenery into a driveway landscape design is an attractive way to beautify the home, but you should be selective about which plants are used and consider the climate in your area. Choosing plants that are hardy and require minimal maintenance will reduce pruning, trimming, and watering chores. Opting for groundcovers and low-growing species is also a good choice because they are less likely to block visibility or damage the surface of the driveway with their roots.
The addition of a stone wall to define the entrance to the driveway is an attractive and functional way to mark the boundary and add visual interest to the driveway landscape design. These walls can be constructed in many different styles and materials to achieve a wide variety of aesthetics. The style of the wall should coordinate with the house and driveway paving to create a cohesive design.
Adding a wrought iron gate to the driveway is another attractive option that provides security and privacy while adding character to the home’s exterior. This gate can be matched with a custom-made fence for a coordinated look that is both elegant and functional.
While small cracks and potholes are natural wear and tear on a driveway, it’s best to replace a damaged driveway when the structural integrity is compromised. Structural damage could indicate a problem with the concrete or asphalt base that cannot be repaired and may result in further damage to other areas of the property.
Replacing a driveway is an expensive project that requires careful planning to stay within your budget. The first step in the process is to have a professional diagnose the damage and determine whether repair or replacement is necessary. For an additional level of peace of mind, homeowners should consider purchasing a home warranty plan. A First American home warranty plan can help protect household budgets by covering costly repairs to appliances and systems such as a damaged or failing driveway.
Drainage is a vital component of any new or replacement driveway. Without it, the water that pools on your asphalt or concrete will wear away the surface, promoting cracks and discoloration. Over time, the excess water will also wash away the soil around your home and lead to foundation damage. This can be extremely expensive to fix and is a serious hazard to your family’s safety. Fortunately, you can protect your home with a well-designed drainage solution.
If you see standing water in your yard or on your driveway, it is a red flag that the proper drainage is not in place. Drainage issues can be corrected by laying French drains, channel drains, or a swale system. These are long-term solutions that help protect your home from the moisture that can cause mold and mildew within your walls, basement, and foundation.
A French drain works with the natural slope of your landscape to funnel water away from areas where it tends to pool and create problems. This is typically done by digging a trench from the area of the problem down to where the water will be directed. The trench is lined with gravel or pebbles to allow the water to trickle down and flow into the perforated pipe that will channel the water elsewhere. The grate is usually made of metal to prevent debris from blocking the drain and can be finished in a variety of styles.
Driveway channel drains are another effective option for directing stormwater. These are typically installed at the end of downward-sloping paver driveways and are completed with metal grates that can be finished in a variety of designs. They are usually designed to keep out large debris while still allowing cars to easily pass through. These are a great choice for muddy or wet climates that need extra support.
When considering drainage for your driveway, you should always consult with qualified and experienced professionals to ensure the best design and installation of the appropriate solution. They will be able to give you detailed advice that is specific to your unique situation, helping you choose the right drainage solution for your property.