Learn which plants thrive in your Hardiness Zone with our new interactive map!

How to Rake a Gravel Driveway

By Larry Simmons
Keep the gravel in your driveway where you want it by raking it into place.

A gravel driveway is a viable alternative to concrete or asphalt driveways in many areas, generally where only light use of the driveway is commonplace. Gravel is inexpensive and quick to lay, creating a stable surface for vehicles to use. While there are specific tools for grading your gravel driveway, whether you're installing a new driveway or repairing one that's seen enough use to disturb the surface, you'll eventually find yourself raking the gravel in your driveway into place. Rake to fill potholes after a storm, to correct damage from heavy use or just as general maintenance. No matter the reason, the process remains basically the same.

Smooth out the surface of the driveway by raking any piles of gravel even with the surrounding driveway surface. Rake only a small layer of gravel at a time to avoid creating furrows in the driveway surface or raking through into the driveway bed below.

Fill any potholes in the driveway with replacement gravel. Pour the gravel into the driveway, slightly overfilling the hole. Use the rake to spread the overflow to the sides, leveling the filled pothole with the rest of the driveway.

Tamp down the gravel on the driveway using any large, flat, heavy object. Place the object down on the surface of the gravel and press firmly, compressing the gravel to remove any air voids beneath the surface.

Maintain the slope of the driveway away from any structures when raking the surface. You'll want the surface to slope away from the center of the driveway and down toward the driveway base. Add replacement gravel if necessary, and drag the gravel with the rake so the center of the driveway is slightly higher than the driveway edges along its length. This aids in draining water away from structures.


Things You Will Need

  • Rake
  • Replacement gravel
  • Tamp

About the Author


Larry Simmons is a freelance writer and expert in the fusion of computer technology and business. He has a B.S. in economics, an M.S. in information systems, an M.S. in communications technology, as well as significant work towards an M.B.A. in finance. He's published several hundred articles with Demand Studios.