Your driveway is usually a visitor’s first impression of your home. The condition of your driveway reflects who you are and how well you take care of your property. Properly maintaining your driveway is essential to making a positive impression, and first impressions are everything.

In order to ensure positive impressions for years to come, these five elements are essential:

Solid Base

If you want to get a couple great decades out of your driveway, then a strong and durable base is necessary and non-negotiable. Your driveway must be able to handle the weight of vehicles, foot traffic, and other elements. Without a strong base, the driveway will lose all structural integrity and cause cracks and potholes.

The driveway base should be made of compacted gravel and other materials to create a firm foundation. The aggregate base should be six to eight inches to support most light-duty to medium-duty vehicles.

High-Quality Asphalt Paving

The quality of the asphalt paving is indicative of how your driveway will perform over the coming years. Hot-mix asphalt should be laid in two layers of material. The first layer (the base layer), made from gravel, should be at least eight inches thick. The second layer (also known as “topcoat” or “binder”) should be four to six inches thick, depending on the specific type of property driveway.

Pavement Professionals

Before any driveway project begins, you must ensure that you’re working with experienced professionals who have access to all necessary equipment, materials, and tools for a successful job. A credible contractor will pave a solidly durable driveway with the proper grading and compaction techniques.

You want the job done right the first time, right?! Choosing an experienced and credible asphalt paving contractor is crucial for having a long-lasting asphalt driveway. Your best bet is to go with a paving contractor with years of experience in your community and who can provide references from satisfied clients.

Proper Drainage

Water will be your new driveway’s biggest enemy. Improper drainage that causes pooling water will quickly lead to cracks, potholes, and other costly damages.

To prevent water pooling, the paving contractor should calculate the elevation of the pavement and grade for runoff. An adequate slope should be installed wherever needed. Another way to ensure proper drainage is by adding drainage channels or drain inlets to the design. A functioning drainage system is a surefire way to extend the lifespan of your asphalt driveway.

Preventative Maintenance

Regular inspections, cleaning often, and routine maintenance are all key components of keeping your driveway in tip-top shape! Inspect your driveway every few months to determine the overall condition of the pavement and note when repairs are necessary. Also, keeping the pavement clear of weeds, dirt, leaves, and debris will minimize wear-and-tear.

Seal coating your driveway will protect it from harmful oxidation from UV rays and water penetration. It also prevents cracking and crumbling from occurring. The best time to sealcoat a new driveway is ~90 days after being paved, but definitely within a year.

If you notice cracks on your driveway, have them filled with rubberized or hot pour crack sealer ASAP to prevent further damage.

By following the above guidelines, your asphalt driveway will stay in great shape for many, many years. With the proper care, your driveway should last 30 years or more.

Pavement Solutions is the best choice for your new driveway — we have the awards to prove it! Do not hesitate to contact us with any questions you may have about asphalt driveways.

Our pavement professionals have decades of experience in paving and maintaining asphalt pavement. We have the training and expertise to provide outstanding results at reasonable rates. Request your free estimate or call us for more information!

Posted by C. Butler on 3/2/24