Asphalt vs. Concrete for Driveways: Which is Better?

When driving down a road most of us never take the time to stop and think how important what the material that the wheels of our vehicle are in contact with is. The material is more commonly known as a road. A road has come a long way from being just dirt, to being crushed rock, to being made of concrete, and finally to be made of asphalt. But the question remains. Is asphalt the better material?
One advantage that asphalt has over concrete is that it can be poured into certain configurations that allow for smoother and safer roads. One is known as Open-graded asphalt and it minimizes the splash during rainstorms so that there will be less crashes. Asphalt also has better skid resistance and offers better visibility.
Asphalt roads are more cost effective too. since they are smoother and they are hardier they need less maintenance. They are cheaper than concrete over their lifetime and it is usually less to initially build an asphalt road. They save the traveler money in fuel costs and on their tire tread. When building a road or doing repairs you don’t have to shut down the whole road, but just a section of a lane can suffice. So, it saves the government a lot on costs. Asphalt dries quickly and is a cost-effective material to use. Like cement it is made from stone, sand, gravel mixed with crude oil. It is then heated and shipped to a job site and poured into place when needed.
Instead of tearing up a whole structure and remaking it like you’d have to do with concrete, you can just patch places or fix areas with Asphalt. Asphalt is so durable and easy to work with that it can be cut and repaired or simply patched easily as normal maintenance. It is called Perpetual Pavement and the New Jersey Turnpike is a great example of it.This type of pavement method can last for a lifetime. The Turnpike was built in 1951 and lasts with just overlays and surface treatments and it receives regular heavy flows of traffic. It is expected to last another 50 years of the same heavy traffic with the same maintenance.
Another good thing about Asphalt is that it is recyclable. There is more Asphalt recycled than any other material in the United States of America. So, asphalt is good for the environment too. So, we don’t have to worry about asphalt ending up in the landfills or waterways when it splits.
So, with asphalt being easy to work with, cheap to make and maintain, durable, and eco-friendly there is little wonder why it is preferred over concrete. There are so many possibilities for it in the future to improve road safety. The proof has shown that the humble road has come a long way from its primitive beginnings.

Posted in: Business

Leave a Comment