asphalt paving Alexandria VA

How to Choose the Right Paving Material for Your Driveway

An attractive driveway adds curb appeal to any home. However, selecting the correct material can be tricky; each paving material comes with unique advantages and drawbacks. Find the best asphalt paving in Alexandria, VA.

Proper grading must also be ensured prior to embarking on any project to prevent rainwater from flowing toward your house and flooding its basement or damaging its foundation. Without this important step, rain will instead seep in through cracks in its foundation and cause massive basement flooding or foundation damage.


Paving a driveway is an investment, and costs can depend on a variety of factors. First, homeowners need to decide what material they would like their driveway constructed out of; asphalt or concrete are among the more popular choices, while others, such as gravel and pavers, are available. Each material comes with its own set of advantages and disadvantages—homeowners should carefully consider its effect on heavy vehicles as well as environmental factors before making their decision.

The size and shape of the driveway also affect its price; for instance, curved driveways will cost more than straight ones, depending on car weight. Furthermore, durability should also be an affordable priority, as should maintenance costs over time, thus making an ideal paving material durable yet easy to care for; these materials should drain quickly without pooling around the foundation of a house and drain quickly without creating drainage problems.

Before embarking on any paving project, it is vital to mark all utility lines. Homeowners should call 8-1-1 or their local number for this service, which typically costs between $50 and $200. Furthermore, existing surfaces like dirt driveways or old asphalt must also be removed prior to construction starting.

Homeowners should also carefully consider transitional areas between their driveway and sidewalk, curb, or road. These transitional zones must be graded appropriately to allow drainage while also being comfortable to walk on. A smooth transitional surface, such as pavers or concrete, that matches its surroundings may provide optimal results.

Cost can be an obstacle when constructing a new driveway, but that doesn’t have to be prohibitive. With careful planning and assistance from professionals, you can select materials that meet your budget and will stand the test of time. When planning the design of a new driveway, it is crucial that you understand its purpose—for instance, if heavy work vehicles will use it regularly, it needs to be capable of supporting these weighty vehicles, as well as regular pressure washing and patching maintenance in future years.


When choosing the material to use for your driveway, several factors must be taken into account, including cost, installation, maintenance, and durability. A damaged or outdated driveway can decrease property values and present safety hazards to you and your family; costly repairs could ensue as a result. Asphalt can be an excellent investment choice as it lasts many years with proper care while using fewer resources in production than concrete does.

Weather plays an integral part in determining the longevity of your pavement. Certain materials don’t do well with rapid temperature swings or freeze-thaw cycles; asphalt is an ideal material to choose for colder climates, as its expansion and contraction properties help it withstand such fluctuations. However, it is still wise to confirm with your contractor that they use hot-mix asphalt to avoid cracking under freezing temperatures.

Asphalt may seem strong at first glance, but over time, it can become compromised when heavy vehicles are parked on it regularly. When water seeps into these cracks during winter and freezes, it expands by 9%, creating even deeper cracks if left unattended. If this problem arises, it would be wise to contact a professional as soon as possible for repairs.

Paving a driveway takes considerable work and preparation. First, the area must be cleared and leveled. Next comes compacting to ensure proper drainage and prevent air voids. Qualified contractors typically use self-propelled compactors to compact soil layers up to six inches deep for this step. Additionally, they may add sand or gravel as a settler material for faster results.

A seal coat application can extend the lifespan of your driveway by protecting against oil, UV damage, and other harmful substances. Furthermore, sealing can make asphalt drier and more flexible, helping prevent premature cracking.

Your asphalt driveway’s lifespan can be extended by clearing away vegetation or structures near its edge and by regularly sweeping and applying driveway sealer. By taking these steps, your asphalt driveway could last for 20 years or longer.


Paved driveways have many advantages over gravel. They look cleaner, last longer, and have lower maintenance costs. A paving contractor can assist in designing your ideal driveway. Always have utility lines surveyed prior to any paving taking place to make sure everything is clear before beginning paving activities. Once your paved driveway has been laid down, it’s essential to stay on top of regular maintenance routines to prevent cracks from becoming more significant issues while keeping it looking beautiful for as long as possible.

Paved driveways require regular cleaning, weeding, and sealing to preserve their surface. To do so effectively, oil and gas spills need to be quickly addressed because asphalt is porous and will quickly deteriorate the surface. Furthermore, it’s also essential that weeds or tree roots that grow around the edges be removed promptly, as this could threaten their integrity.

Make time each month for a visual inspection of your driveway to catch any hairline fractures in its surface that are left unrepaired, such as hairline fractures that become larger cracks if they go undetected. Crack filler can be used on any small cracks and holes; adding crushed rock or pea gravel can provide extra traction and drainage benefits.

Once your driveway has been repaired due to cracks and other imperfections, sealing it annually is recommended. A quality sealant will protect asphalt against sun and rain damage that can further degrade its condition, so ensure you power wash before applying sealant so that it adheres securely to the asphalt surface.

A paved driveway can be an invaluable addition to your home, increasing property value and offering safe driving and walking surfaces. Proper maintenance practices must be put in place to keep up with repairs as soon as necessary, and it would also be beneficial for homeowners to hire professional assessors every year to assess their driveway’s health to save money and extend its lifespan.


Paving driveways can make them look more pleasing, especially if you select materials that blend in seamlessly with their surroundings. Clay bricks bring warmth to a front yard and pair nicely with homes featuring white exteriors, while pavers laid in herringbone patterns amplify transitional and modern homes’ aesthetics. Pavers also come in various shapes and colors, so you can find designs to meet your taste and ecological concerns; permeable pavers may even provide more eco-friendly solutions as they allow water to drain through rather than be directed back into our stormwater systems.

Asphalt paving materials provide an appealing modern aesthetic. However, improper sealing can lead to uneven and unsightly results. Additionally, oxidation occurs over time, turning dark colors to light gray hues. While this is a natural process, it can be reduced with regular seal coating applications.

Gravel can be an economical alternative to asphalt but requires regular upkeep to prevent weeds and dirt from spreading across its surface. Furthermore, vehicles may displace it easily, meaning it may not work well for long driveways. Finally, gravel may shift if its surroundings are not graded or compacted correctly.

Chip-sealed or tar-and-chip driveways begin with a gravel base, and hot tar is then applied over it, followed by a crushed stone being spread evenly across it and rolled and pressed with roller equipment into a smooth surface. This type of pavement is an economical alternative to concrete but doesn’t last as long due to erosion. Brick or rock edging is often used to prevent erosion while adding an attractive appearance and protecting from erosion; drainage solutions help reduce moisture buildup that leads to freeze-thaw cycles that accelerate asphalt deterioration; while grading plans help ensure drivers will safely navigate this type of pavement during wetter weather.