Choosing the Best Stone Pavers for Your Driveway
No matter how durable your driveway is, there will come a time when it needs to be repaved. The good news is that if you don’t already have a paver driveway, now is the time to get one. Not only do driveway pavers make your home look better, but they also improve its value.
If you are considering a new paver driveway, there are many varieties to choose from so it’s important to consider which option is best for your property. Let’s take a look at the different types of stone driveway pavers to help you decide.
What Kind of Driveway Pavers are There?
One of the best things about driveway paver designs is that its easy to pick one that fits your home. This is because there are a wide variety of options to choose from terms of materials. With that in mind, here is a quick list of the most common types of materials:
- Paver and Permeable Pavers
It’s important to know that most of these options can vary in shape, size, and pattern in addition to the material itself. Each option has its pros and cons, but before we get to that, let’s go over some other important things to consider when it comes to your paver driveway design.
Identifying Your Goals for Your Paver Driveway
Despite most stone driveway paver options having certain benefits in common, they can also vary widely in a lot of ways. This means that you should have a good understanding of why you’re repaving your driveway and what you hope to achieve. Understanding your goals will help you to pick the best driveway for your specific situation.
Flooding and/or Heavy Rains
If your driveway is prone to flooding, or if you live in an area where heavy rains are common, then picking a paver driveway that can help with this is a great idea. Permeable driveway pavers allow rainwater to drain through and into the aggregate base below where it is absorbed like a sponge. This helps reduce water buildup and also keeps contaminants from being washed into nearby bodies of water such as lakes and rivers.
Snow and Ice
If snow and ice are problems for your current driveway, you’ll be happy to know that modern technology has a solution. Stone driveway pavers can be built with a heating system beneath them. These heated driveway systems allow the heat to pass through the driveway so that it can melt off the snow and ice above. The water is then absorbed into the soil just like rainwater.
Since we all need the environment to survive, being eco-conscious is important now more than ever. This being the case, you can help the environment by installing a paver driveway. This is because when rainwater is carried to nearby lakes and rivers it tends to pick up pollutants along the way. However, a permeable driveway allows the soil to absorb the water which is then purified through natural processes involving microorganisms.
Cost-Effectiveness, Maintenance, and Durability
Getting your driveway repaved is an investment which means that you want to get the best value possible. This being the case, three factors come into play here: cost-effectiveness, maintenance, and durability. The more durable your driveway, the less need for maintenance. However, the upfront cost is also a factor to consider as well. Driveway pavers tend to vary in price depending on the style you choose and some are also much more durable than others. Weighing the upfront costs vs the cost of maintenance is very important when choosing which stone paver you want.
Curb Appeal and Local Regulations
If you just want a driveway that looks good, paver driveways are the way to go. With so many patterns and materials to choose from, it’s easy to find something that will make your home look amazing. However, you should always make sure that you review your local codes and regulations regarding what you can or can’t do in your area when it comes to landscaping. While this isn’t an issue in most cases, it’s better to know for sure than to have to deal with the consequences later.
Paver Driveway Pros and Cons
Once you have a good idea of what your goals are for your driveway, you can then begin to seriously consider which kind of stone paver you want to use. Each comes with its pros and cons, but all are good choices under the right circumstances. With that in mind, let’s go over the different qualities of stone paver driveways so you’ll have an easier time picking the best one for your home.
Standard Concrete – Pros
Standard concrete is the most common form of paver driveway and for good reason. Not only do they come in many different styles, but they’re also easy to install.
Standard Concrete – Cons
The downside to standard concrete driveway pavers is that they can be pricey. They can also be prone to fading and cracking if you live in an area with large temperature fluctuations. Overall, concrete driveway pavers are a very flexible but high-maintenance option.
Interlocking Permeable Concrete – Pros
A significant step up from standard concrete is interlocking permeable concrete. The interlocking concrete pavers are separated by joints which are then filled with small stones. This makes the driveway water permeable and more flexible so that it’s more resistant to damage. On top of that, interlocking permeable concrete pavers are much more eco-friendly as well. More on that later. Also, interlocking permeable concrete pavers allow for many different patterns to be created such as the classy herringbone driveway defined by its stylish 45-degree angles.
Interlocking Permeable Concrete – Cons
While interlocking permeable concrete pavers are a great long-term investment thanks to their durability, it does carry a higher upfront cost than standard concrete in many cases. If you’re on a tight budget, this may limit your options a bit.
Brick – Pros
Brick stone paver driveways are very aesthetically appealing and come in a wide variety of styles. They’re also very eco-friendly as well, though perhaps not quite as much as permeable concrete pavers.
Brick – Cons
The biggest drawback to brick pavers is the cost. Not only are the upfront costs very high most of the time, but they also tend to wear down easily. This increases maintenance costs and you may even find yourself needing to completely redo your driveway sooner than you want. This being the case, brick is typically an option reserved for those with large budgets.
Gravel – Pros
Gravel is both durable and offers a wide variety of options. It’s also eco-friendly since allows water to pass through into the soil. As you would probably expect, gravel is also extremely affordable.
Gravel – Cons
While gravel pavers come in many varieties, pretty much all of them look cheap. If you have a nice home, a gravel paver driveway might look tacky by comparison. Another issue with gravel pavers is the fact that they may become uneven thanks to the rain, snow, and other factors. Maintenance isn’t expensive for gravel pavers, but it may need to be done more often.
Building an Eco-Friendly Driveway
It may not seem like it, but driveways play a big role when it comes to protecting the environment. As previously stated, a driveway that doesn’t allow rainwater absorption lets runoff make its way into nearby bodies of water. This means that over a year, a lot of polluted water is going into lakes and rivers because it can’t be absorbed as easily on the property of homeowners. As you can probably guess, this adds up very quickly.
Permeable driveway pavers allow as much water as possible to be absorbed by the ground. This allows rainwater to be naturally purified before it makes its way back into reservoirs and other bodies of water. The more permeable stone pavers an area has, the less water pollution it will have. It’s that simple.
The type of stone driveway pavers you chose depends on many factors. However, permeable stone pavers tend to be the best option overall, especially if you want an eco-friendly driveway. Even if you don’t care about water pollution, permeable stone pavers come with many other benefits that make them hard to ignore as a top choice.
In the end, it is important to choose a stone paver option that you’re going to be satisfied with for years to come. Building a new driveway is an important investment and something that you’ll want to carefully consider.
If you’d like to learn more about stone paver driveways, or if you need help deciding which option is best for your home, contact us today, we’re always happy to help!