Concrete VS Asphalt – Their Pros and Cons

asphalt-or-concrete-drivewayDeciding on which materials to use on the driveway is a big decision that many homeowners have to make, whether to use concrete or asphalt. There are other material options for the driveway, but asphalt and concrete are the most common. Whichever you choose between the two, there will always be pros and cons.

There are considerations that you have to take into account when it comes to choosing between concrete and asphalt. These are climate factors, appearance, cost and also maintenance. Your budget is a major factor in your decision. Asphalt is cheaper and affordable to install as it leaves a smooth surface that is easy to repair. Asphalt is a popular choice for homeowners especially those with kids and adults who love to play basketball in the driveway. On the other hand, concrete is more expensive. If it cracks, the cracks will stand out and can cause major damage.

Even if concrete is a longer lasting option as it can go up to 30 years, asphalt costs are considerably less and gives a greater value for your money. Concrete has reduced needs for maintenance and repair compared to asphalt. Concrete driveways have attractive surface and showcase fine edges that look great on your property.

Asphalt expands with the changing temperatures. This factor enables it to maintain its integrity through summer, storms and snow removal is easier. Concrete driveways will eventually crack even in the warmer climates and it may suffer damage if you use a wrong de-icing product. When you decide which materials to use on your driveways, you need to consider the climate of the place you live in.

Asphalt overall shelf life is lower than concrete and it is difficult to get the same quality of clean, precise edges. When plants grow they can easily break asphalt driveways and without proper repair and maintenance they can deteriorate quickly. But they can be re-layered and does not need to be replaced. Concrete driveways can also have cracks and you cannot add a topcoat to existing concrete.

Both concrete and asphalt can be tinted and made to look very pleasing.

Concrete vs asphalt debate continues and homeowners and professionals have their own opinions on which material is the best to use. In most cases, the choice depends on personal preference. Most homeowners weigh the upfront cost which asphalt wins. On the other hand long lasting life, concrete wins out. So the homeowners just have to decide based on these factors.