Low Maintenance Driveways – The Top Two
Low Maintenance Driveways – What are your options?
A low maintenance driveway for many of us is up there with a low maintenance garden and general low maintenance life.
Who wants to spend hours digging out weeds from in between blocks!
So that’s where we’ll start. Forget block paving as a low maintenance driveway choice- blocks require regular sealing to stop organic growth.
Even with or without sealer weeds can still grow in between blocks and as time goes by this becomes unsightly and require frequent removal.
Once weeds get a grip they will work their way into every ‘nook and cranny’ and unrestricted moss growth means your driveway becomes slippery and a general health hazard.
A Low Maintenance Driveway with Resin Bound
Pattern Imprinted Concrete is a Low Maintenance Driveway Surface
And even with resealing a block paving area – there’s just no guarantee you will be able to keep weeds or any other organic growth under control.
Even the Puniest Weed can Push Through Block Paving
In saying this, if block paving is your choice at least look at some of the modern types of surfacing available.
There are a number of manufacturers of block paving but it can be quite difficult to see which offer the best quality and importantly at the right price.
In our experience there’s one block paving manufacturer that stands out way above the rest.
They cater for both modern and traditional designs and they’re owned by one of the largest aggregate conglomorates in the world – so you can trust in their products.
Is Tarmacadam a Low Maintenance Choice?
We love the sticky black stuff and as the original paving surface it’s definitely ‘stood the test of time’.
But are Tarmac driveways a low maintenance driveway surfacing option?
In many ways yes.
A well laid tarmac driveway can last for years and years with very minimal maintenance. Unlike other decorative paving the effects of Ultra Violet (UV) is less. That’s not to say a tarmacadam driveway won’t benefit from an occasional reseal (this sealer (LINK) is specifically formulated for Tarmacadam).
However, a poorly laid tarmacadam driveway may lift and cracks (sometimes substantial) will appear.
Once this happens there are solutions for repair but quite often a full excavation and reinstallation is necessary.
So we’re afraid tarmacadam fails our low mainenance gauge.
What’s the Attraction of Low Maintenance Driveways?
Without stating the obvious?
Modern lifestyles mean many of us have less time to spend pulling out weeds, sweeping and pressure washing our driveway, pathway and patio areas.
Whilst there are numerous driveway cleaning services available (be sure to read guide below first) these can cost up to £20 per square metre, or more.
An advantage of getting a professional in is that they have all the necessary equipment and will no doubt complete a clean in a fraction of the time it may take you.
Low Maintenance Driveways – Pattern Imprinted Concrete
Patttern imprinted concrete is laid as one slab and the only area for weeds to grow are along expansion/control joints (which are cut into the concrete).
This is the main difference between block paving and decorative concrete (in terms of construction all blocks are individual).
In terms of organic matter you will not get anywhere near as many issues as you’ll encounter with a block paving driveway.
And even with the limited scope for weed growth there’s a really simple trick to minimise any growth at all.
Just ensure expansion/control joints are sealed with mastic. This greatly reduces any organic growth appearing on a driveway/patio area at all.
Newly installed imprinted driveways are always sealed but as with all concrete surfacing exposed to prolonged UV penetration – fading will occur over time.
As such it’s very important to reseal decorative concrete every 2-3 years.
The results are truly amazing.
Even very old imprinted driveways with deep ruts can benefit enormously from a simple reseal.
A Low Maintenance Pattern Imprinted Concrete Driveway
In terms of ongoing maintenance for an imprinted driveway – this should be limited to a good sweep (with a stiff broom) and the occasional pressure wash every couple of months.
As mentioned above regular re-sealing is important for any pattern imprinted concrete driveway (regardless of pattern and colour).
And just to reiterate it’s best to get this done every two years or so.
We like pattern imprinted concrete. It’s an established paving product that will last for many years if maintained.
If it’s installed correctly it really is a superior driveway, pathway and patio surfacing product – and ultra low maintenance.
Low Maintenance Driveways – Resin Bound
There shouldn’t be any weed growth with resin bound – as long as it’s regularly swept and washed off.
There’s no need to go crazy, however. You definitely don’t want to blast the stone aggregate away!
Just a gentle (stress gentle) regular wash off will do. Unlike concrete surfacing there’s no need to reseal.
Resin isn’t as well established as concrete surfacing products so it’s still too early to tell what long term maintenance issues may arise.
A Beautiful Low Maintenance Resin Bound Driveway
So there it is. Short and Sweet.
The choice isn’t wide but that makes it easier for you to choose.
If low maintenance is an important feature for your new driveway, patio or pathway surface then opting for resin or decorative concrete is the way to go.