Featured Driveways Article
Driveway Paving Explained
Paving a driveway may seem like a daunting task, but it may not be as complicated as you perceive. When you have a better understanding of what is involved in paving a driveway, you will most likely be ready to take steps to pave your driveway. Whether you plan to do it yourself, or contract with a driveway professional, it's important to do your homework and conduct research so you understand what to expect. Of course, if you have no experience in this area, paving your driveway is best left to the experts!
The following information provides you with the basics related to driveway paving - but don't try this at home without a professional guide!
1. Driveway paving starts by adequately preparing the surface for pavement. This often entails some grading with heavy equipment to ensure the surface is well prepared and level.
2. Paving a driveway requires a good assessment of the available area for paving. It's important to allow enough length and width for pavement to accommodate your vehicles. If you plan to pave a double-wide driveway, you'll need more width of course. At a minimum, measure off at least 10 feet in width for a driveway and 20 feet in length. Although you can possibly get by with less, this is the best recommendation.
3. Driveways start with a good, solid base. That means that you'll need to have a layer of gravel spread before the driveway is paved. Gravel will probably be about 2 inches thick but it is important not to have it too thick. About 2-6 inches is recommended but a driveway paving expert will have specific recommendations based on the type of paving material you plan to use.
4. Once gravel is in place and has been smoothed and distributed evenly over the surface, the asphalt or other product will be poured. This is when a driveway professional comes in handy!
5. If you are using asphalt, it must be expertly spread across the area very evenly and smoothly. There are special tools used by professionals to ensure the surface is smooth. This is important. Once it is level, additional gravel will be added for strength and durability and this must also be expertly pushed into the asphalt with heavy mechanical rollers for a smooth surface.
6. If you're using something other than asphalt, there may be other steps included other than or in addition to those above.
7. Once a driveway is paved, it is important to let it dry and 'cure' for a couple of days. The length of time this takes depends on the product used, but at least a day is needed for all products.
The above steps are a general outline of what is required when paving but they are not meant to prepare you to do-it-yourself! Paving a driveway takes knowledge, experience, and skill. Make sure you consult a professional before you embark on a project of this magnitude.