Concrete v. Asphalt: An Age Old Question

Ramsey DrivewaySo you have decided to tackle your next big home-improvement project—redoing your driveway. Asphalt and concrete driveways represent the main two options homeowner’s have when rebuilding their drives.

Although the two products may not seem extraordinarily different, upon closer inspection each has unique properties that provide an array of advantages and disadvantages for homeowners. Before continuing with paving your driveway, gaining an understanding which products works best for your home will help you with your project.


While both products have substantial differences, they also have a lot of similar characteristics. At their core, asphalt and concrete are made of similar materials—stone and sand. In addition, both require a gravel base for support and a waiting period for the material settle before use. Each material is common and contractors regularly work with the material.

Why Choose Asphalt?

Asphalt is made of a tar adhesive that gives the material many unique properties. Although the material is much more inexpensive than concrete, it also wears more easily—about half the life of a concrete driveway. In addition, asphalt driveways require maintenance every 3-5 years; however, repairs are easy to make and quick. In terms of aesthetics, asphalt provides a more uniform look by matching the color of the road.

Is Concrete Right for You?

Concrete provide a more durable alternative, albeit with increased costs. They can last almost 40 years and require very little maintenance. However, if you live in a cold climate, cracks are likely to develop in your driveway. In addition, maintenance is much more difficult with concrete material than asphalt and repairing these driveways often leaves noticeable imperfections. Aesthetically, concrete allows for multiple colors and finishing options that allow homeowners to balance the color of their house with their driveway.

Asphalt and concrete have both benefits and drawbacks for homeowners looking to install or rebuild a driveway. Differences in cost, maintenance, aesthetics all vary between both products. Being informed and understanding the differences allows for homeowners to make and informed decision about their driveway. Whether it is the initial cost of the product or repairs down the road, knowing the facts about the material your working with will prevent a myriad of future problems.

Want a driveway in your Ramsey home? No matter which you choose, call McFarlane Asphalt at (201) 327-5258!