The driveway contractor had some very specific directions about caring for the new driveway he installed in the fall. At the top of the list was the directive that under absolutely no circumstances should you ever use a commercial ice melt product on the new surface. In fact, the driveway contractor explained that any warranty would be void if you used these harmful products. In addition, he assured you that there was no way to disguise the kind of damage that would occur if you used these harmful products. The resulting damage was too easy to identify.
Your husband, for his part, did not argue with the conditions of the driveway contractor. In fact, your husband pointed out, you had a south facing driveway and it was a rare occurrence when ice was really a problem at your house. When your driveway was too full of snow and ice, it likely meant that most of the streets were in far worse shape and that you might not even need to leave the house. He did not see any reason why following the driveway contractor’s directions would be a problem.
You were surprised then when you went to the grocery store to stock up on a few things before last weekend’s anticipated ice storm that you there were entire shopping carts at the front of the store filled with a variety of ice melt products. In fact, everywhere you looked you was another shopper with a cart full of groceries and the bottom rack of the cart containing one or two bags of the very product that your contractor and husband said that you would never use.
Fortunately, when you woke up the third morning after the storm began, your driveway was nearly dry and you had never even needed to scoop. The fact that schools had been cancelled and that your husband just worked from home meant that you did not even need to go out on the days when the weather was the worst. Your southern exposure driveway had taken care of the rest!
Driveway Repair Projects Are Often a Result of Damage Caused by a Home Owner
Concrete repair can be frustrating, especially if you created a problem that caused the damage. Many products that are used on the streets in large cities are used out of necessity. These same industrial products, however, are not always in the best interest of private driveways and sidewalks. Some chemicals and applications may work on streets that are essential traffic ways for the city, but these same streets are often in a state of disrepair or construction in the non-winter months. Although not all of the street repair problems are caused by chemicals that are used to combat weather, areas of the country that deal with winter conditions have to do far more repair and reconstruction projects.
Consider some of these facts and figures about driveways, sidewalks, and the concrete industry:

  • Colored concrete is available in as many as 250 different hues and shades, although the offerings can vary from contractor to contractor.
  • The average one-car drive is eight to nine feet in width.
  • The average two-car driveway is 15 to 18 feet in width.
  • Finished pavement surfaces should slope at least one-fourth of an inch for every foot.
  • Installed and maintained correctly, a concrete drive will have a long useful lifespan that lasts as long as 25 to 50 years.
  • 18 billion tons of asphalt pavement cover America?s roads.
  • Of the 2.6 million miles of paved roads in America, over 94% of them are surfaced with asphalt.
  • 90% of U.S. parking lots are surfaced with asphalt pavement.
  • 67.8 million tons of asphalt pavement material was reclaimed in the year 2013. Nearly 100% of this reclaimed material was eventually reused.
  • 3,500 asphalt mix production sites operate across the U.S. In total they produce nearly 350 million tons of asphalt pavement material every single year.

Whether you are selecting a driveway product for a brand new construction site or you are considering the replacement or repair of a current driveway, professional contractors can often provide the best advice. The decision between asphalt and concrete is often determined by both where you live and the climate of that specific location.

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