Pros and Cons: Asphalt vs. Concrete Driveway
You have two choices of materials you can use when installing a flat hard surface driveway: asphalt and concrete. Asphalt is a black colored tar-based product that is mixed with sand and stone while concrete is a light colored product that is mixed with sand and gravel. There are pros and cons to using each product in Minnesota. Here is an overview of those pros and cons.
Cost to Install
Asphalt cost less to install than concrete. You will pay about $2 - $5 per square foot for asphalt while concrete will cost about $3 - $10 per square foot.
Asphalt cures (hardens) faster than concrete. You will be able to drive on and park on an asphalt driveway the same day. With concrete, you might have to wait up to a week. This is very important if you live in an area like an HOA that restricts how you can park.
Asphalt cracks easily, but it can also be repaired easily. All you need to do is fill the cracks with asphalt-based crack filler and then reseal the surface with a thin coat of seal coating. You can typically do this in an afternoon on a regular-sized driveway. When concrete cracks you usually have to dig up the slabs and replace them. Replacing concrete usually takes at least a week from start to finish and it can be expensive.
Asphalt typically lasts up to 20 years in most places while concrete can last up to 30 years. However, asphalt is better able to handle the extreme temperature changes that happen in Minnesota during the year because it can expand and shrink. Concrete will crack when it expands and shrinks.
Asphalt is easier to keep free of snow since it has a flat surface. Concrete is harder to plow and shovel because the surface has grooves in it that can catch the tips of a shovel or plow.
Deciding on the right type of material can be a difficult decision depending on what you are trying to accomplish. You should contact us at Truseal America. We can stop by to further explain the differences in driveway materials so you can make an informed decision on what is best to use for your driveway.