Spring is a welcome sight for most of us here in Minnesota, but especially so for asphalt and concrete contractors. Concrete especially is harder to pour and cure in the winter, and so road and driveway repair projects often get put off until the spring and summer.
If you’re one of the many residents considering a new concrete or asphalt driveway, then you’re probably wondering how long your new driveway will last. This April, CBS Minnesota asked a similar question in a report that determined just how long city and state roads are supposed to last.
“Well, we have two different types of road surfaces that we use, asphalt and concrete,” Kevin Gutknecht, Minnesota Department of Transportation, told CBS. “We design the asphalt to last about 20 years and the concrete to last 35 years.”
Of course, paved roads see much more wear and tear than the average driveway or parking lot, and with proper care and maintenance, your asphalt driveway should last at least 20 years as well. Properly cared for, the average concrete driveway can last 25-50 years.
While that might answer the question you started with, many people have some follow-up questions before they decide to install a new asphalt driveway. For instance, if concrete lasts longer, then why do so many people recommend asphalt instead?
Perhaps the most obvious reason is price. Asphalt generally costs less per square foot than concrete, but that’s not the only reason. Today, you’ll find 18 billion tons of asphalt on our roads. Not only that, but 94% of paved roads and 90% of parking lots are covered with asphalt.
When homeowners decide to install a new driveway in Minnesota, they usually hire a local asphalt driveway company like ours. Asphalt is a relatively cheap and durable paving material. Plus, while concrete is highly vulnerable to frost heaving and the sunken driveway effect, asphalt is a more flexible material, which means it won’t crack during the winter.
When wear and tear finally does take its toll on an asphalt driveway, they’re much easier to repair than concrete. Asphalt may not have as many color or design options as concrete, but it’s still the paving material of choice for a vast majority of Minnesota homeowners, businesses, and municipalities.