A beautiful driveway can do wonders for the kerb appeal of your property. Choosing the right finish for your driveway is imperative, as it’s a decision you’ll have to live with for a long time. Here’s a guide as to the various options you have when it comes to a surface finish for your driveway.
Asphalt is an affordable driveway surface that’s quick to lay. Happily, it needs minimal maintenance except for cleaning every few years. If you use a stabilising geotextile fabric such as Drivetex, the driveway won’t sink or rut. It all sounds good, but before you take the plunge on this low-maintenance solution, consider asphalt’s harsh and commercial look, especially if you have a long driveway or large space in front of your house, as it can look quite industrial.
You’ll also need to think about planning permission. As asphalt driveways are non-porous, they increase the volume of rainwater flowing into storm drains and can exacerbate flooding. If you decide an asphalt driveway is still your preferred option, get the right permissions and consider directing surface run-off water into a soakaway with crates wrapped in Draintex drainage geotextile fabric.
Resin-bound or resin-bonded
Resin-bound and resin-bonded driveways try and achieve the look of a high-end gravel driveway, without the pitfalls commonly associated with this finish when a gravel grid system has not been installed – such as gravel migration, visible grid systems, and rutting. Resin-bound driveways are porous, allowing for rainwater drainage, but they’re complex to install and don’t achieve the desirable, softer finish of a gravel driveway. A cheaper option is a resin-bonded driveway. It’s laid on a concrete or tarmac base and so not porous, meaning it can get dirty quickly and may also need planning permission.
A gravel driveway is undoubtedly the most appealing driveway finish and one that’s synonymous with high-end homes. It’s also a surprisingly affordable and quick-to-install option. Misconceptions about maintaining a gravel driveway to keep it looking smart are easily overcome with the correct installation. Gravelrings gravel retention grids are simple to install and help keep gravel on your driveway, rather than migrating into plant beds and pathways. But not all gravel grid systems are created equal – Gravelings has an integral mesh backing to prevent loose aggregate working its way under the panels, causing lumps and bumps. The backing also helps to resist weed growth, but installing a specialist driveway geotextile membrane, such as Draintex or Drivetex, can provide double protection against unwelcome weeds. It also stabilises the driveway to avoid rutting.
Block paving provides a hard-wearing driveway finish with a wide choice of colours and shapes to complement your property. However, it’s a harsh looking finish, which won’t appeal to everyone, and as a non-permeable surface, a professional landscaper will need to ensure it’s SUDs compliant. Weeds can also take root in the spaces between blocks, meaning regular maintenance is required.
With 20 years’ experience in the landscape industry, Growtivation understands the needs of landscaping professionals and has concentrated on providing high-performance solutions with our Product That Works range.