Is your driveway looking the worse for wear? Sun, rain, snow, ice and even the weight of cars and heavy equipment can take a toll on the appearance and function of your driveway. There are two ways to go about fixing cracks, settling and other issues you may be having with your driveway: replacement or repairs.
Read on to learn more about how to choose between these two options and how driveway demolition works if full replacement is required.
Which approach is best for a damaged driveway?
How do you know when to replace your driveway or to invest in repairs? While repairing concrete is a quicker and more cost-effective option compared to complete replacement, it’s only ideal in certain situations. If your driveway has small, hairline cracks and no signs of settling, you can probably get away with repairs.
For driveways with multiple, larger cracks, frost heaving or settling due to improper preparation, you’ll likely need full replacement. Repairs may seem cost effective, but they’re only temporary fixes for these types of problems, and you’ll need a replacement soon anyway.
In cases where a full replacement is required, tear-out and installation follows a similar process from contractor to contractor. It typically takes between two and three days to account for demolition and installation.
Here’s a brief guide on the steps involved with driveway replacement:
- Demolition of the current driveway: The first step in driveway replacement involves removing the current driveway. How does driveway demolition work? Your paving professionals will use either a jackhammer or a Bobcat equipped with hydraulic or pneumatic tools to break up the concrete and haul it away to a landfill. It’s a simple process, but it should never be a DIY job.
- Excavation: Your team of paving pros will then excavate the area, making sure that the top of the driveway is higher than the bottom. Even a light slope will aid in proper water drainage.
- Foundation: A sub-base or foundation below the driveway is laid to promote longevity of the new concrete driveway. The sub-base includes aggregate materials that are carefully graded and compacted to improve the strength of your driveway.
- Reinforcement: Forms are laid around the perimeter of the driveway. Then a reinforcing steel grid is installed to provide tensile strength for the finished driveway.
- Concrete pouring: The concrete is poured into the forms, starting at the garage or carport area and moving out toward the street. As concrete starts setting quickly, the experts get to work finishing the concrete to a smooth finish. The edges are carefully troweled, and control joints are made to give the driveway some flexibility.
Knowing when to replace your driveway, rather than relying on temporary repairs, can actually save you quite a bit of money in the long run. Of course, hiring a reputable paving company that follows proper preparation and pouring methods will ensure you get the most from your investment. For help assessing whether you need driveway replacement or repairs, contact Sunstar Seal Coating, Inc.
This post was written by Writer