Why You Should Choose Concrete for Paving
When faced with a paving project, one of the first questions most people ask is, “asphalt or concrete?” Both have their benefits and drawbacks. Concrete paving is the clear choice for many, and for good reason.
What’s the Difference Between Concrete and Asphalt?
Both concrete and asphalt are made of a mixture of sand and stone. Concrete, however, uses cement as a binding agent, whereas asphalt uses tar. Each type of pavement has its benefits and drawbacks, and there are practical considerations to be made when choosing how to approach any given paving project.
At $8-$13 per square foot, concrete is the more expensive option. However, the high price point of concrete is mitigated by its long lifespan and exceptional durability. While you may pay more up front, you will likely save money in the long run.
Concrete doesn’t require nearly as much maintenance as asphalt. Asphalt must be sealed periodically to preserve its
longevity. Aside from occasional degreasing, concrete doesn’t require the same level of upkeep.
Both concrete and asphalt will eventually develop cracks, and concrete is more difficult to repair than asphalt. When concrete is damaged, an entire slab must be replaced. Asphalt can be patched and mended more easily than concrete. However, concrete is not nearly as brittle as asphalt and will not deteriorate as quickly.
A concrete surface can last 50 or more years with minimal maintenance. Asphalt, on the other hand, will need quite a lot of maintenance and has a lifespan of only 25 years.
4. Aesthetic and Design
One advantage of concrete is that it can be stained, tinted, stamped, or etched to add a decorative flair to a driveway or walkway. For larger projects, many prefer the light-gray hue of concrete over the darker color of asphalt.
One major consideration of any paving project is the climate. The freezing and thawing cycle is hard on paved surfaces, even durable ones like concrete. The salt used for de-icing can also wear down concrete over time. Compared to asphalt,
however, concrete is more weather-resistant and far less brittle.
Why Choose Concrete?
For many paving jobs, concrete is the clear winner. It’s extraordinarily durable and requires very little maintenance.
Concrete is also more environmentally friendly than asphalt. Asphalt is derived from fossil fuels and has a significant carbon footprint. Concrete, on the other hand, is primarily made from limestone, which is widely available. Concrete production has a relatively low environmental impact and is easily recyclable.
For roadways that have high truck volume, concrete may be a better choice. Concrete pavement can withstand the weight and pressure of heavy loads better than asphalt, and is less prone to cracking and raveling.
The most compelling reason for choosing concrete paving is that it’s super durable and has a significantly longer lifespan than asphalt. It requires very little maintenance and is less susceptible to weathering and wear-and-tear.
If you’re still having a hard time choosing between asphalt and concrete, contact Gallaher Seamless Paving today for a free, no-obligation consultation with one of our experts. We’ll assess your project and offer honest recommendations based on our expertise.