Decorative driveway options

AnthonyAugust 10, 2012

Hi all,

We need to replace our driveway. It's about 500 sqft concrete and chipping, flaking, turning into gravel bad. Don't know thickness, but I'm assuming it has to be removed.

We have people coming to give estimates on stamped concrete, printed/dyed asphalt, and grading/prep for pavers (I can DIY laying and sanding pavers, just don't want to do the excavation and compaction).

Drivway has a mild slope and has two large trees flanking it, but the roots don't seem to have bothered the concrete. DC metro area, so figure a few snow/ice/freeze events, but not horrible.

My question to all the GW community:

Do you have a driveway of any of these types?

Pros / Cons?

Hidden things you wish you knew?



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I have a large driveway. It's stamped and colored concrete about 18" on the border, to simulate pavers. It looks nice, and works well for here in Minnesota.

I have a paver patio and walks in my garden. IMO, the pavers are a PITA - after a couple of years, weeds sprout up, and if it's shady - you'll get moss. I wish I would have done the stamped concrete.

I think asphalt is the least desireable product - both in performance and looks.

    Bookmark   August 10, 2012 at 2:01PM
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Our neighbors have a dyed/stamped asphalt driveway and it looks good. Like a paver driveway with a brick edging.

Not sure how much maintenance they had to do, but their driveway is much larger than ours, so concrete or actual pavers would have probably cost them $20k.

I can't argue with the concrete as a base. Our house is almost 35 years old and the driveway is just now crumbling. That's with no maintenance other than the occasional wash.

The stamped concrete estimate is coming tomorrow, I guess I'll know then.

Thanks for the input, Doug!

    Bookmark   August 13, 2012 at 8:50AM
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Stamped asphalt and stamped concrete would be the least costly out of the decorative options. As a general price comparison stamped asphalt is about half the price of real brick pavers, and is about 1/3 less than stamped concrete. You mentioned you are located in the DC metro area that experiences freeze/thaw cycles. A good benefit of stamped asphalt as compared to stamped concrete for example; is that stamped asphalt flexes during these cycles. So unlike concrete there is no cracking. You are also able to put de-icing chemicals and salts directly on the driveway (which is not recommended on concrete because it will deteriorate). Also, depending on which company/product is used for the stamped asphalt you will not have to recoat the driveway every couple of years. Once you have it done once you are done.

And as mentioned already above, unlike real pavers there is no weed/moss growth that grows in between the bricks.

Just a few benefits. My recommendation for your location and what you are looking for would be stamped asphalt; depending on the type of coatings used.

Here is a link that might be useful: Driveway Impressions Decorative Asphalt

    Bookmark   August 14, 2012 at 11:32AM
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