Driveways are extremely important in our homes. Building a good driveway can boost the value of your property. When you start building your driveway in Ireland, you will usually choose between two options, gravel or tarmac. Each of these has its pros and cons that you must consider before making your choice. In this guide, we will look at both in detail.
Things to Consider When Choosing Gravel or Tarmac Driveway
Here are some factors you need to consider when picking between gravel or tarmac driveways:
- Impact on drainage
- How much maintenance would be needed?
Pros and Cons of Gravel Driveways
If one of your primary concerns is the cost of constructing the driveway, then you should go for gravel. This material is affordable, and the labour costs are usually much lower.
Another benefit of gravel driveways is that they are extremely tough. They can handle very heavy machinery and can stand everyday traffic. You also don’t need to worry about the material breaking as this can only create more gravel. If you are planning to drive industrial-grade vehicles on the driveway, this material would be ideal.
You should also note that these driveways require very little maintenance. Unlike tarmac, gravel cannot chip or crack, and it cannot develop potholes. On average, these driveways can last about 100 years. You can repair or replenish gravel driveways continually without having to spend a lot of money.
A notable disadvantage of gravel driveways is that they easily wash out as they are not held in place. You can reduce the effects of washout by tamping and packing the material, after which you can spray it down with water. If you live in a place that floods frequently, you should go for tarmac driveways. You can conduct a house survey to determine whether gravel would be suitable for your home.
Again, since gravel isn’t held in place, it will be constantly displaced by the weight of vehicles and equipment. At the same time, this material can easily wear your tires as it is rough on cars.
A final issue with gravel driveways is that they are not as pleasing on the eye. Tarmac tends to look better.
Pros and Cons of Tarmac Driveways
While tarmac will cost you more than gravel, you should remember that it is still an affordable material. The labour cost may be higher as it involves more work compared to gravel. You can contact a professional to see how much each type of driveway would cost.
When considering the cost of tarmac driveways, you should also keep in mind that it will boost the value of your home. Tarmac driveways are of great quality and will improve the appearance of your house.
Tarmac is also great for snow, ice, and rain. It can absorb the sun’s heat and will work well in cold places. At the same time, it is not prone to wash out like gravel.
While these driveways can be great for colder weather, they can be more prone to damage in hot weather. This is because extreme heat can make it malleable. This can especially be an issue if the driveway needs to handle heavy loads. This isn’t an issue in Ireland as our temperatures generally don’t reach high enough.
Tarmac driveways also require more maintenance compared to gravel ones. This is because it easily chips or develops potholes. You can extend the life of the driveway by applying a sealant to the surface. This sealant is meant to work as a barrier to elements that cause damage to the road. It is generally recommended that you apply the sealant a year after installing the driveway.
Tarmac and gravel are two of the most used materials for driveway construction in Ireland. When choosing between these two materials, you will have to consider the aesthetics, cost, durability, and level of maintenance required.
Are you thinking of installing a new driveway? If so, you should let our experienced driveway pavers build it. They can advise you on whether you should use gravel or tarmac. Contact us today on 0852139591 or request a quote on this page.