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Resurfacing vs Replacing a Driveway: What to Know

Is your driveway showing signs of deterioration? 

You might have already started wondering whether to resurface it or replace it altogether to set things right. But deciding the correct renovation procedure for a driveway can be tricky. There are a lot of factors you’ll need to consider and some basics regarding driveways that you must be aware of before proceeding. 

And, to help you make a well-informed decision, we’ve compiled this simplified guide on resurfacing vs. replacing driveways. Read on to clear all your doubts. 

Resurfacing Vs. Replacing A Driveway: What To Know

Driveway Resurfacing Professional Equipment

Signs That Your Driveway Isn’t In Great Shape

Firstly, you’ll need to keep in mind some common signs indicating that your driveway needs replacement or repair:

1. Drainage Problems

Your driveway might not be draining correctly, so the water gets directed towards your home's foundation. In such cases, you’ll need to look into the issue quickly to avert further damage to the property. This may include rectifying the drainage issues and waterproofing your driveway to prevent further damage.

2. Potholes

If not rectified soon, potholes on the driveway can get larger with time and might even damage your car's tires or cause it to slow down. 

3. Cracks

Cracks that are even less than ¼-inch wide should be mended to prevent them from spreading. If water expands or freezes within the crack, it will turn wider and deeper and become a more severe issue.

4. A Weathered Look 

If your driveway appears faded or weathered, there’s no reason to worry. While this occurs with age, it may still be safe for use. You can fix concrete highways by patching cracks and adding sealants

5. Crumbling Edges

If you observe crumbling on the edges of an asphalt driveway, it probably indicates the edges were quite thin from the start. So, you should consider adding extra edging to prevent more damage. 

6. Sunken Areas

Is the driveway outside your garage sinking lower than the garage floor? In that case, you should try patching and levelling it again

Important Factors To Consider 

Coming to the hour's question, most homeowners will naturally tend to avoid replacing the entire driveway as the costs can be pretty high. But you should know that while resurfacing might suffice in some cases, it’s essential to start afresh in other situations. 

So, here are some factors to consider to help you understand the better course of action to take in different situations:

Cracks Concrete Driveway

1. Driveway Material

The material constituting your driveway is an important variable to consider while you’re deciding whether to go for resurfacing or replacement. Note that some surfaces are simpler to repair compared to others. For instance, if your driveway is composed of natural cobblestones, you may only need to patch some cracked pavers. 

But concrete driveways will require resurfacing or resealing to conceal the patchwork. Another point worth considering is how well the driveway's material will age. Materials that appear weathered in a few years due to regular exposure to the sun can be disguised by resurfacing them with a more long-lasting alternative

2. Cracking

A driveway with visible cracks is an indication that the surface is not in good shape and requires immediate attention to avoid more expensive issues in the future. 

Generally, you can consider resurfacing cracks that are less than ¼-inch wide. The next step will be to refinish or reseal the whole surface to ensure the driveway looks uniform. 

But in the case of cracks measuring greater than 6.5mm, a repair will be the same as applying a Band-Aid to a wound. Remember that larger cracks indicate significant problems as they let water seep in even after the area is patched. 

This mainly occurs in areas subjected to freezing temperature, as the water thawing beneath the surface causes more significant damage. In such situations, it’s best to replace the driveway surface entirely. 

3. Age 

Considering the pressure and load taken by driveways every day, there is almost no driveway that’s built to remain intact forever. An asphalt driveway will need a replacement every two years, whereas you must replace a concrete one after 25 years. For driveways nearing a similar age, a repair job isn’t regarded as a wise decision. 

Moreover, no matter the condition of the driveway, replacing an old surface with one made of newer and modern materials has several benefits. It can not only improve the curb appeal or attractiveness of the property but also increase its overall value.

4. Proper Drainage

In the case of well-designed driveways that have their surfaces in intact condition, water is least likely to have any adverse effect. But in case you find rainwater pooling in some areas or running down the driveway, you must check whether it’s affected by drainage issues. 

If you leave the problem unresolved, it can weaken the surface and increase the chances of cracks or potholes. Based on the condition of the existing driveway surface, there are several ways to rectify the issue without replacing it entirely. These include adding curbing, replacing drainage pipes, or installing strip drainage systems. 

Resurfacing Or Replacing Your Driveway

That’s all we had to share about the various scenarios where you’ll need to replace or resurface a driveway.By now, you might have figured out the ideal course of action for the driveway at your home. So, go ahead and start the preparations. 

Before we sign off, we’d like to leave a few tips. If you have prior experience in DIY construction projects and plan to do it by yourself, it’s best to research the nitty-gritty of the particular technique. 

Alternatively, you can hire a reliable concrete specialist company for the job. But make sure you carefully discuss your requirements with them, including the preferred materials, beforehand. Get in touch with the team at Top Coat Concrete if you are in Sydney. Our technicians have the knowledge and expertise to provide you with a permanent and cost-effective solution to fix your driveway

And with that, it’s a wrap for today. But we’ll be back soon with more informative guides. Till next time!



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