Replacing a driveway is an issue nearly every homeowner will have to face someday. Contracting the task is usually the best and most time-efficient option, but if you're handy, you may opt to do it yourself. Regardless, be aware that replacing a driveway is an expensive investment and a hasty decision could be costly.
There are several options when considering a driveway replacement. Putting in a gravel driveway is the cheapest option, but it tends to be quite messy and undesirable. Most people choose concrete or asphalt instead. When shopping for contractors, it is beneficial to get several estimates. Replacing a driveway will cost several thousand dollars depending on its size and the material used. Shopping for the best contractor who offers the best options could save you a lot of money.
Concrete driveways tend to be more expensive but arguably offer many more benefits in the long run. For starters, concrete driveways last longer than asphalt driveways. They also require less maintenance than asphalt. Concrete tends to reflect light from the sun because of its light color, making it cooler in the summer than asphalt. Consequently, snow will melt slower in the winter on a concrete driveway.
Putting in an asphalt driveway does come with its advantages. For starters, an asphalt driveway is going to be cheaper to install than a concrete one. One advantage to asphalt is that in the winter, snow will melt faster because the surface of an asphalt driveway is darker than concrete. Asphalt driveways tend to last 8 to 10 years.
Besides the type of material, the cost of replacing a driveway also depends on what part of the country you live in. In remote areas it might be difficult to get supplies out to your location. Contractors may charge extra for the transportation. Probably the biggest factor in determining how much it will cost to replace a driveway is the size. Obviously, it is going to cost much more to replace a 200 foot-long by 8 foot-wide driveway than it will be to replace a 40 foot-long by 6 foot-wide one.
All types of driveways require some level of maintenance. This is one factor that should be considered when determining the cost of replacing a driveway. No driveway is impervious to weathering; the elements will undoubtedly affect a driveway made of any material. If asphalt is chosen, it will need to be re-sealed approximately every three years.