When it comes to driveway alternatives, the average homeowner is usually unaware that such options exist. The standard concrete or asphalt driveway has long been the standard for residential and even rural homes. And, while these types of driveways have served their homeowners well up to this point, the need for alternative driveway solutions has become too strong to ignore.
This is because while asphalt, concrete, and other impervious types of driveways are somewhat durable and nice-looking, they pose many problems that can lead to an unsightly driveway, extra vehicle maintenance, injury, muddy messes, and other issues that the average family should not have to deal with.
There is no good reason to suffer from the plethora of problematic situations that an asphalt or concrete driveway can lead to when there are exceptional alternative driveway surfaces available. In case you’re tired of dealing with your concrete driveway and you want to learn about driveway options other than concrete, here are some of the best alternatives to paved driveways we could find.
Brick has become a very popular concrete driveway alternative because it can be laid in such a manner that allows for the absorption of water between the bricks. This creates a somewhat permeable driveway that will allow stormwater to pass through it, preventing the development of mud puddles or giant ruts in your driveway.
One of the things that makes brick one of the best driveway paving alternatives is that it is less expensive than having an asphalt or concrete driveway poured and installed. It’s also a bit more environmentally friendly and you can even include some pieces of natural stone in a brick driveway to create your own unique style.
This is one of the cheapest alternatives to asphalt driveways by far, costing very little to have installed. The average gravel driveway consists of hard, angular gravel laid throughout the driveway. Though loose gravel can tend to migrate away from your driveway over time due to traffic, this can be fixed by simply raking up the loose gravel and reapplying it to your driveway every now and then.
Gravel can be a somewhat permeable alternative to a concrete driveway, allowing some stormwater to pass through it. Gravel can be problematic if your driveway has more than a 7% slope to it but for level driveways, it makes an outstanding asphalt driveway alternative.
3. Permeable Pavers
Permeable pavers combined with an aggregate like gravel are a great combination if you’re looking for alternatives to paved driveways. Residential pavers like the kind offered by TRUEGRID will lock gravel in place, preventing it from spreading and also preventing you from ever having to reapply it.
The square, interlocking grids made from 100% recycled plastic are laid over a prepared, compacted subgrade made up of hard, angular gravel. They make for one of, if not the best, alternative driveway surfaces because of their makeup and structure.
One of the biggest reasons that permeable residential pavers from TRUEGRID make one of the best driveway material alternatives is because they cost very little to install, compared to other concrete driveway alternatives. They are also more durable than concrete, asphalt, and other driveway alternatives due to their patented flex joints. These allow the pavers to absorb and evenly distribute pressure throughout the grid because of the vertical compression strength and flexibility of the joints.
Because of the impervious, solid nature of concrete and asphalt, many people assume these types of driveways are longer-lasting, but this isn’t the case. An alternative asphalt driveway like one built from permeable pavers will last anywhere from 25 to 60 years, depending on how much traffic it gets. This is because the recycled plastic they are made with is high-density polyethylene which has UV inhibitors added for additional protection from the sun.
Selecting the Best Driveway Paving Alternative
You have a lot of options when it comes to alternative driveways. Paved driveway alternatives aren’t always cheap and temporary, some alternative driveway solutions are even more durable than concrete or asphalt. Brick is one of the alternatives to a concrete driveway that looks great and won’t cost you much. It can be semi-permeable if laid over sand and comes in many styles.
Loose gravel makes for one of the cheapest driveway alternatives, though it can be high-maintenance when compared to other asphalt driveway alternatives. While it will be able to help with water drainage, ruts and mud holes can still occur if the gravel isn’t regularly reapplied. In terms of alternative driveways, loose gravel is a good option but inferior to other paved driveway alternatives such as TRUEGRID permeable pavers.
Their interlocking plastic pavers are one of the best driveway material alternatives on the market due to their cost-effectiveness, ease-of-installation, and durability. In terms of driveway alternatives to paving, these pavers outperform traditional asphalt and concrete in terms of water-drainage as well as environmental-friendliness.
Looking for alternatives to asphalt driveway can seem like a chore, but going with TRUEGRID permeable pavers can allow you to put all the other driveway alternatives to concrete out of your mind. Their sheer superiority when it comes to permeability, durability, functionality, versatility, and length-of-life make residential pavers from TRUEGRID the number one option to consider when searching for a good alternative to an asphalt driveway.
Browsing through alternatives to paving a driveway doesn’t mean you have to settle for less. Consider using the TRUEGRID permeable paving system and see for yourself why so many homeowners have chosen it instead of other driveway paving alternatives.
option for the base layer of a gravel driveway is item #4. Item #4 is comprised of sand, dirt, and golf ball-sized stones. This type of gravel is available in a few different variations including recycled item # 4, which is made up of recycled stones, brick, blacktop, concrete, and rock.
There is also quarry item # 4, or crushed limestone, gray item # 4 which appears dark grey in color, and crushed bluestone item #4. Crushed bluestone item #4 is usually found in municipal driveways, though.
The middle layer of a gravel driveway features stones closer to golf ball size, with #57 stone being the prominent type of gravel. Otherwise known simply as crushed gravel, #57 stone also helps promote drainage.
5 Types of The Best Surface Gravel for Driveaway
There isn’t a lot of variety for the bottom layers of a gravel driveway, however, there are more options when it comes to finding the best gravel for driveway surfaces. Among the other options are crushed stone #411, quarry process, pea gravel, jersey shore gravel, marble chips, and river rock. These are the best options for driveway surfaces gravel, because they are small stones combined with rock dust, which makes a more solid driving surface.
1. Crushed Stone #411
It is crushed up #57 stone combined with rock dust. This mixture is able to handle moderate traffic from heavy vehicles.
2. Quarry Process
It is also called “crusher run” and works well for the surface of both driveways and walkways. It’s made from stone dust fines and crushed stone.
The stone dust will settle and become compact to create a semisolid surface that is smooth. It is important that you know that this type of surface gravel needs to be sloped towards the sides of your driveway for better drainage.
3. Pea Gravel
Pea gravel is popular gravel for driveway aesthetics. It’s made up of round, small stones that can come in many different colors. This type of gravel will easily migrate and spread under the weight of vehicles, though, and needs to be stabilized for long-term, maintenance-free usage.
4. Jersey Shore Gravel
It is made of yellow, tan, white, gold, and brownstones and looks quite a bit like sand. It’s similar to pea gravel since it needs borders or stabilizing pavers to prevent it from spreading.
5. Marble Chips
Marble chips are white and they sparkle in the sunlight. They typically cost more than other gravel types but are another favorite when it comes to being the best gravel for driveway aesthetic appeal. This type of gravel also needs a border or stabilization to prevent it from spreading, migrating, and washing away.
6. Blackstar or Blacktrap Rock
A very attractive dark gray gravel, this is an excellent choice as it is angular and locks together. When combined with stabilizing grid paving system, this provides a super durable and beautiful driveway.
A Better Alternative to Typical Gravel Driveways
Some of the aforementioned gravel types require stabilization, but the best way to construct any gravel driveway is by using TRUEGRID permeable pavers to lock in your gravel.
TRUEGRID PRO LITE and PRO PLUS stabilizing pavers simply require fill gravel and surface gravel, although you can use the same type of gravel for both. The fill gravel is poured over the top of a piece of fabric at the bottom of the excavated area where you want your driveway that provides drainage for water and other liquids.
It is then compacted and leveled before TRUEGRID permeable pavers are snapped in place over the surface. Next, your surface gravel of choice is poured over the pavers and locked into place using a heavy roller or vehicle. This weighs the pavers down and locks them securely into place.
The main benefit of using TRUEGRID pavers to build a gravel driveway is that they will keep your gravel in place, eliminating the need for almost any maintenance during the course of your driveway’s lifetime.
A properly installed and maintained TRUEGRID gravel driveway is durable enough to handle all types of vehicle traffic and will last up to 60 years without cracking or breaking down in the sun, rain, or other types of weather like asphalt does.. Choosing the best gravel for driveway usage is only part of the equation.
If you want to build your gravel driveway the maintenance-free way, get in touch with the pavement professionals at TRUEGRID today for a quote.