Is it time to start a paving project, whether it is a brand new build or a replacement, but you aren’t sure whether to get concrete or asphalt? Choosing a suitable material is key to creating a paving project that is durable, functional, and beautiful. Today, we will share the top aspects to consider in the concrete vs. asphalt decision so that you choose the right one for you.
Concrete vs. Asphalt Materials
Both materials use gravel as a base as well as sand and stone mixed in their specific adhesive. The adhesive is the main difference between the two, with asphalt using tar and concrete using cement.
Concrete vs. Asphalt Cost
There is a reasonably drastic difference in price between concrete and asphalt. Asphalt is the cheaper of the two, costing between $2 – $4 per square foot; the price relies heavily on the cost of crude oil at the time. On the other hand, concrete starts at $4 – $6 per square foot and can reach up to $15 per square foot after all the finishes, details, stains, or whatever you decide to do.
Concrete vs. Asphalt Lifespan
Concrete has a longer lifespan than asphalt, generally lasting up to 50 years if maintained properly. Asphalt, with proper maintenance, can last up to 30 years.
Concrete vs. Asphalt Maintenance
Concrete and asphalt have two very different approaches to maintenance. With concrete, it doesn’t require much sealing. However, it is highly recommended to do regular degreasers to remove excess oil and stains. With asphalt, you will need to seal it within six months of installation and reseal it every three to five years to get the most out of it.
You will also notice that concrete is much harder to repair than asphalt; asphalt is relatively easy to fix. Additionally, once concrete has been damaged, it is impossible to reseal.
Concrete vs. Asphalt Climate Preferences
Where you live is a primary determinant of which material is right for you. Concrete does not like the cold; it will eventually crack due to the constant freezing and thawing. On the other hand, asphalt doesn’t like the heat; it will soften in extreme heat and stick to anything it touches! Therefore, if you live in the cold, your best option is likely asphalt, and if you live in the heat, the best option is concrete.
Concrete vs. Asphalt Aesthetics
Concrete offers much more in terms of aesthetics than asphalt. With concrete, you can etch it, stamp it, stain it, and choose from various color finishes. You can even make it look like other materials like brick or a specific pattern. On the other hand, asphalt is just dark gray or black, maybe with the possibility of a slightly colored tint. Therefore, if you want something creative, concrete would be the right choice, but if you want a streamlined look that matches the street, then asphalt would work well.
Are you still not sure which material is right for you or your project? Give us a call at Signature Paving today for a consultation!