Curb Appeal in Raleigh>Question Details

Marion Trink…, Home Seller in Cary, NC

Is there a better option to replace my concrete driveway that needs repair?

Asked by Marion Trinkner, Cary, NC Tue Sep 2, 2008

I'm from flat, sandy S. Florida . . . my concrete driveway in the NC Piedmont needs repair/replacement. Have one of those very steep, sharp slope yards. Wondering how pavers would do, or if there's some other better replacement. All the concrete driveways in my neighborhood have cracking and are pitched up, though mine is worse than most. Thanks very much for any advice!

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It's important to match your neighbors, but I'd consider repaving with asphalt as well. It sounds like concrete isn't the best option for your slope of driveway and the climate. If you do use asphalt, though, you'll probably still need to repair or remove the concrete underneath.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue May 19, 2015
Driveways take a lot of abuse over the years. They're out in the sun, the snow, rain and heat. It's no wonder that they crack as much as they do. There's nothing wrong with understanding this and feeling the need to replace it. Have you talked to a contractor about getting it replaced?
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Mar 9, 2015
If you have a lot of cracks in your driveway, it's good to look into replacing it as soon as possible. But if everyone in your neighborhood has cracked driveways, you might want to look into different options. There are a lot of things you can do to replace your driveway. I would suggest talking to a contractor to see what designs would help to keep it from cracking as much as possible. If you can figure out a way to reduce this issue in the future, it would be very beneficial to you.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Mar 3, 2015
It depends on the extent of the damage and where it is. I suggest having a driveway repair company come and give their two cents. You may even want to consider having a few different companies give their opinion. It never hurts to get a second opinion. Good luck.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 25, 2015
There would be more information that would be needed to be known in order to give the best answer. If your pavement is in bad shape then it might just be best to get it re done. I would recommend having someone come out and look at it for you.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Jan 30, 2015
Getting your driveway installed professionally can help a lot. It's important to make sure that the company has good reviews. In general, though, they usually have more experience with sloped driveways than most people. I wish you luck!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jan 21, 2015
I agree with Nora, that is probably the best thing that you could do. Have you ever considered using precast concrete? I'm not saying that it's better necessarily, but you should look into it. It definitely has its advantages.
Flag Thu Feb 5, 2015
If you are moving into a new area you need to know what your climate is like before you make any decisions. Concrete will have a tendency to crack if you live somewhere that transitions from warm to freezing. You could try asphalt pavement, or I would just ask a local contractor for advice, because if you are going to repave your driveway it should at least work well.
Flag Wed Feb 4, 2015
Hi Marion

Consider grinding off the bumps, and try liquid concrete and sealant.

Good luck
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Jan 16, 2015
I think this is a good idea, but you should have a professional company do it. It's easy to make a mistake with concrete that ends up costing you more in the long run. Have a company come out and look at your specific situation, then take their advice. |
Flag Tue Jan 27, 2015
I would ask your neighbors. They can give you the reviews of who they use. If you do use asphalt it is also important to find a reputable company to do the sealant after words. I'm not an expert but I think that's what makes or breaks the asphalt.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Jan 16, 2015
Concrete drives in this area to me are the best option since we can have a wide variance in temperatures over the course of the year and they are the most durable. Make sure it is professionally installed and to prevent cracking, I would suggest the use of rebar be used as has been commented on before.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Dec 21, 2014
If there are this many options, I think it would be a good idea to talk to a professional before making a decision. Any decision involving concrete needs to take into account the next several years. You don't want to do a repair that only improves things in the short term.
Flag Tue Mar 10, 2015
I actually just read an article recently that suggested adding rebar or mesh under your concrete to prevent it from cracking. I thought that was a great idea! I would also make sure you don't have any trees close by your driveway. Also, if there's any way to divert run-off so that it isn't constantly going around your driveway, that might help as well.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Dec 19, 2014
That is a really interesting idea that I haven't thought of before. I noticed that my driveway was also starting to crack recently, but I've never considered adding rebar to fix it. Do you have the link to that article talking about this? I would really like to get my driveway fixed before we try to sell it next summer.
Flag Sat Jan 17, 2015
A professional paving contractor would be able to help you with your driveway. If yours is worse than those around you, then it probably needs to be replaced or at least undergo serious repairs. Pavement repair is just one of those things that we have to pay for every few years. Driveways don't stay perfect for forever, unfortunately.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Dec 16, 2014
She's right, you just have to look for a professional paving contractor. There is more than one way to pave a driveway, but you'll have to discuss this with the contractor. Like Jackson said, you could use asphalt instead of concrete. I'm not sure if it would help your curb appeal, but it would definitely be very strong.
Flag Tue Feb 10, 2015
You could try using asphalt instead of concrete. That would be the most sturdy option, but it wouldn't really look very good. I would suggest getting stamped concrete put in. It will look good and it would be less likely to break than regular concrete because the majority of the pieces are significantly smaller.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Dec 12, 2014
I can relate to your problem. I need to get my concrete raised in my driveway. Over the years there has been little shifts and the concrete has fallen. I would like to get it fixed before winter. Thanks for sharing this information!…
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Dec 11, 2014
You can do concrete restoration, which is cheaper than pulling everything out and getting brand new concrete. It's an option to look into. I would call your local concrete companies and see the kind of services they offer, so you can make the best decision.
Flag Fri Mar 20, 2015
For a steep driveway I would definitely recommend asphalt. It works the best for steep surfaces because it has room to flex and move. I also don't think it would cost to much to have the concrete torn out and asphalt put down. I think the cost of the job could easily be made up in additional money made on the home.!asphalt-contractor-albuquerque/cdv
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Dec 1, 2014
I also would recommend asphalt. Although it does stand out in a neighborhood full of concrete driveways. If that isn't an issue for you, it is much easier to maintain than concrete. You can fill the cracks with tar. Tar doesn't look as good on concrete driveways in my opinion.
Flag Wed Dec 10, 2014
I also would recommend asphalt. Although it does stand out in a neighborhood full of concrete driveways. If that isn't an issue for you, it is much easier to maintain than concrete. You can fill the cracks with tar. Tar doesn't look as good on concrete driveways in my opinion.
Flag Wed Dec 10, 2014
If you are looking to get a driveway that looks better and has more curb appeal, it is probably best to have it repaved. If you used pitch like your neighbors, it would not have a clean and finished look like repaving would. I think that making a good impression with a solid and new driveway will really help people's first impression of your home. That is why I would suggest you have it repaved so it will be crack free!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Nov 21, 2014
I would imagine if you looked around and talked to different companies there would be at least one able to do it. There are many different levels of experience with companies. My In laws just had their driveway repaved a few months ago.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Nov 12, 2014
There has got to be a better way to repair your concrete. You could try just cutting out the sections that are damaged and replace those parts. I would get the help from a professional though to see what they think.
Flag Wed Dec 3, 2014
If you do end up repaving your driveway, I would recommend looking into expanding it as big as possible. A larger driveway always looks nicer and allows for better accessibility and more parking. If expanding your driveway means cutting into your yard, there are services available that can help with this. Rock removal services can come in and remove any and every rock, leaving you all the space you need to expand your driveway.
Flag Mon Dec 1, 2014
If you are wanting to get your driveway to look better, it would probably be best to just get it repaved. To get this done well so that it lasts a long time, it would be a good idea to find a good paving company. Then you can find a trustworthy business that can help you, so that hopefully you won't have to redo it for quite some time!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Nov 11, 2014
I agree, you should definitely get it repaved. It would probably be best to have the original concrete cut and pulled out. That would make it so much easier for you to lay a new driveway.
Flag Thu Nov 20, 2014
I would like to expound on your point that it is good to find a trustworthy business. My uncle just had a tree fall on his driveway and his driveway needs to be re paved. He is looking for a driveway paving contractor to do the repair as soon as possible. He is making sure he checks the company's reviews before choosing them because he wants to be sure they can be trusted to do a good job.
Flag Wed Nov 12, 2014
You need to contact a few paving companies. If you find a good one that you like the work will be fine. They're professionals, and they know how to do their job. The best thing for you to do is to make sure that you are going to like the company you choose. Liking the company will play a much bigger role in what you do than anything else will. A good company that you like will also be the best hire you can make.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Nov 6, 2014
I would get in touch with a paving contractor to see if there are more options. I think your best option will just be to pull the concrete out and lay down some new concrete. I don't think you are going to be able to fix those cracks, but a contractor should be able to come up with several more options, and so it's a good idea to check with them.
Flag Mon Dec 8, 2014
I would call the professionals in your areas and see what they think. Before you hire a company it is important to find one who has had years of experience and great reviews from others. Concrete replacement is a difficult job and you want it done right the first time.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Nov 4, 2014
I agree, Zeda, calling the local professionals can be a great way to find the best paving services. You can also do some research online and check out some company reviews. My family is interested in installing a basketball court in our backyard. We would need to find a good paving company as well.
Flag Thu Nov 6, 2014
Paving can be a really hard and stressful job. There is nothing better than being able to have a freshly paved driveway. It is especially nice after you have had a rough and cracked driveway for a while. It can take a lot of money and hard work, but it is definitely worth it.

Mary Jane |
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Oct 15, 2014
I agree with Mary that pouring concrete can be a stressful job. My husband and I are going to redo out concrete. We are still looking for tips on it but I bet it is going to be worth it when we are finished.
Flag Fri Oct 31, 2014
I have been putting off installing a driveway for the longest time. I have a friend who pours concrete and he says that if he knows one thing about concrete, is that it cracks. We live in an area with very extreme seasons, and I feel that it takes a toll on on concrete. Is there special concrete that can withstand that kind of stress?
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Oct 1, 2014
There are quite a few different ways that you can repair the concrete in your driveway. I would probably recommend filling in the cracks with ready mix concrete if the driveway is still in decent condition. If not, you could always pull all of the cement out and completely replace it.
Flag Thu Oct 23, 2014
You can also choose to switch to asphalt. It will not crack under heat the same way that concrete will. It will also still give you the traction you need for your car.

Claire Reynolds ||
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Sep 12, 2014
Concrete is the preferred construction material for driveways in this area and can get quite expensive. I do know vendors that can repair concrete as long as the driveway isn't in really bad shape.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Aug 5, 2014
We have an asphalt driveway and it has held up nicely for us so far. When we put it in we decided to go with red asphalt which I have grown to really like. I'm not sure what all the pros and cons are for concrete or asphalt driveways but you could look into that further. It might depend on the weather and climate of the area you live in.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jul 30, 2014
Also, if you do decide to get rid of your concrete driveway, know that there are tools that can make it very easy. You can find a tool to cut concrete. I didn't know about this tool until just recently but I imagine it would help a lot. If you hire professionals to come take out your driveway they will most likely use something similar.
Flag Thu Aug 7, 2014
I would say it is a great idea to put asphalt in your driveway. Now, since you live in Florida, I think it would be good to get something that has a great seal in it, to help with the humidity. There are lots of great places who offer this service I think you'd be happy with. Just start shopping around and good luck on such an ambitious project!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Jul 18, 2014
Marion, Here is a link that compares concrete and asphalt driveways. It show benefits of each including environmental!…
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jun 25, 2014
Thank you for sharing that link. I am looking for an asphalt contractor to repave my driveway. I was considering concrete, but I am going to stick with asphalt. I think it is much more attractive.
Flag Sat Oct 18, 2014
My uncle is actually in a situation that's very similar to what Marion is dealing with. I believe he decided to replace his concrete driveway with asphalt, since it' be easier to have repairs done to it than it'd be to fix up concrete. I'm really curious how it'd going to look after he finally gets it done.
Flag Tue Oct 7, 2014
I'm living on a very steep concrete driveway currently. There are so many cracks and uneven parts in it, it's a pain to drive on! Not only that, but the kids don't ever play on it. Did you ever figure out anything to help with your problem that could potentially help mine?
Flag Tue Sep 16, 2014
Asphalt is much less expensive than paver blocks. Paver blocks are one of the hishest cost ways to go with a drive way and they will unpheve up and down even worse than concrete. The NAR just put out an article on this same topic several days ago and now I wish I had kept it for you. If you redo your concrete, make sure it is done right. Good concrete drives have the concrete poured over crossed bars of rebar and proper expansion joints. So often, to help hold down costs, builders do not use the rebar and thus you get the cracking. As you have found out , this area can have extremely cold days followed immediately by extremely warm days. This change makes the concrete expand and contract on a regular basis. Ask a driveway company about using rebar vs. just pouring the concrete over dirt.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun May 18, 2014
If the driveway is in such bad shape that the whole thing needs replacing, you might get an estimate on asphalt if the restrictions allow it….make sure you check on that! If there are sections that are bad but other areas are good, I have seen some where those sections were cut out and replaced with either concrete painted with design or stamped concrete or pavers and it looks very good.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat May 17, 2014
Have you ever considered asphalt? We did asphalt driveway paving in North Vancouver last year and it has helped up really well for us thus far.
Web Reference:
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Sep 18, 2013
Kara, I live a rural area and we just put in an asphalt driveway. My kids love how smooth our new driveway is. They love to ride their bikes and scooters all around our driveway. It seems like the asphalt will also be a little more sturdy during the winter months.
Flag Thu Dec 18, 2014
Over four years old!!!!
The cracks are probably worse now.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Dec 21, 2012

A basic concrete drive will be much less expensive than pavers. Repairing a cracked drive by attempting to fill the crack and overlaying with stamping will not fix the problem that caused the crack in the first place. If the crack was caused by movement, it's likely additional movement will occur with time, so any "quick fix" will simply be just that, quick, short lived and a poor investment.

Pavers can work on steep driveways, but you need a very strong curb to be put in place. Often times they put in a 12" wide concrete curb, and then lay pavers between the curbs. The advantage of pavers is that if you get movement in the future, you can repair just the location where the movement occurred, often times at much less expense than a total replacement. But the initial cost is quite high compared to new concrete.

Here in Austin, the current replacement cost for a driveway runs between $5 and $9 a square foot, including removal of the existing driveway.

To minimize cracking of your new concrete driveway, make sure the contractor breaks up the pavement with more expansion and control joints. The control joints are designed to focus any cracking into the trough that's created by the control joint. Expansion joints are designed to allow the concrete to move/expand with temperature changes. The more of these you have, the less likely it is that you will get cracking across the face of the driveway.

You may still end up with issues, even with more joints, hence one of the benefits of pavers, but there are limits to any design, and your slope could be pushing any available options over the brink.

Good luck,

0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 2, 2008
Marion - you might want to drive around and look for other areas that have similar contours but better looking driveways. Then ask someone who did the concrete work. Look for driveways that have been in place for a while. If the homeowner tells you the drive was there when they bought it, get the name of the builder and find out who they use for concrete work.
You need the adivce of someone who is experienced and does great work and who can give you some realistic options.
Good luck!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 2, 2008
Marion - you might want to call a few different companies that offer concrete stamping. You would receive a similar effect to pavers without the risk of them not holding up to the steep incline; also, the process is generally less expensive. Usually they are able to repair the cracking that exists and lay a thin layer on top. They then can add color and "stamp" patterns into the concrete.
Good Luck,
Maryann Lawler, REALTOR
Keller Williams Realty
(941) 586-8257
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Sep 2, 2008
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