Driveways: Replace or Resurface?
If you have a driveway you know needs work but you’re uncertain exactly what work it needs, this article is for you. As with previous articles, our goal is to inform the customer so they aren’t misled. There are times certain contractors in the industry, whom are dishonest, and point the customer in the wrong direction for a variety of different reasons. The customer could be looking for the cheapest price and the contractor abides since they just want to generate business while having no regard for the quality of their work or their name. Next could be the contractor recommending unnecessary work just to drive up the price. Finally, and most often, the contractor wants to beat out any competitor so they recommend the cheaper job by over promising and under delivering and worse off the customer won’t realize this until it’s too late, usually a year or 2 down the road.
Such scenarios usually go like this; the driveway definitely needs to be replaced so while the contractor does realize this, they also know most of the time that if they could promise to resurface the driveway by claiming every other contractor who has come was wrong, explains your driveway will look brand new by the time its over and your saving money, chances are you’d go for it. The funny thing about that statement is while it is misleading, it’s not a complete lie since the driveway does look new at the jobs end. When explaining this I often use this analogy, if you were building a house and you have a crumbling foundation, you may be able to build a beautiful home on the crumbling foundation but in time the house will collapse and your still going to need to do what was originally necessary, build a new foundation. Any contractor who would still perform that type of work while knowing it’s not the right job gives a bad name to every contractor out there who are honest and take great pride in the work they put out. Trust has always been a big factor in our company. If the customer entrusts us to give a recommendation on what work needs to be done, we take that seriously. Every year we encounter adamant customers that want a price for a job that’s incorrect because another contractor has convinced them otherwise. Every single time we encounter this, we turn down the work because it’s not the right job that needs to be done. We will not tie our 35+ year credibility, integrity, good name and the trust the customer has given to us to something we know is not right. We believe this is what has allowed us to stay in business this long.
What does it mean to replace a driveway? Replacing a driveway means to rip up the existing asphalt driveway, put down the subbase, properly pitch it to achieve optimal water flow, and put down new asphalt.
What does it mean to resurface a driveway? If you have a solid surface that shows no significant signs of damage and the driveway’s level wouldn’t be too high, you could resurface your driveway by sealing any minor cracks with hot tar and then put down an additional layer of asphalt on top of the preexisting one. It’s okay if you have some, small fine cracks. If you have any cracks that are significant, spider webbed, wide or a good amount of them, we’d strongly advise against doing this.
What does driveway milling mean? Milling a driveway is almost never done in a residential setting. This is usually something done in commercial settings. However, this means to partially grind down the existing asphalt pavement beneath most visible cracks and then put down a new layer of fresh asphalt.