Concrete Versus Pavers For Your Outdoor Spaces

Posted on 7/24/2012 by DNN Support

To pour or not to pour… that is the question. Many homeowners choose to redo their driveways and walkways during summer. One of the biggest questions we receive here at Yanton’s is “how much will it cost me to do pavers versus concrete?” To respond to all the questions with just one answer – “it depends.” The question you need to answer is: “What do I want out of my driveway and walkway?” Concrete and pavers both have pros and cons. Do you want your driveway, patio, walkways, or pool deck to stand up to the weather, require little maintenance, and look like new for a long time to come? Do you want them to be cost-effective?

  

Concrete has traditionally been one of the most common paving materials used. It's low cost per square foot makes it the natural choice of many homeowners, as it initially seems to be a relatively inexpensive alternative. In reality, the inevitable cracking of concrete leads to a long-term cost that's far greater than installing paving stones, without providing any of the benefits pavers have to offer.  Concrete will crack at some point in time. Common causes of cracking are shrinkage and when the base moves due to heavy loads or settlement. Concrete can also crack as a result of the expansion and contraction caused by freezing, thawing, and other changes in the weather.  As these cracks form one by one, year after year, it is often difficult to exactly match the color and structure of the original material each time a repair is needed. The alternative to repairing the concrete is to replace the entire construction when the cracks become intolerable. 

Pavers solve all of the problems described above, and are appropriate for any paving use including patios, pool decks, driveways and walkways. Because pavers are individual units, or “bricks,” the natural joints between each paver will give or stretch with pressure, expansion and contraction, which helps eliminate the cracking that asphalt and concrete are prone to.  One of the biggest advantages to pavers is that if a repair ever does become necessary, pavers are manufactured to be uniform and can easily be replaced without leaving patches or scars.If deformation should occur due to shifting of the base, the structure can easily be repaired by removing individual pavers, re-leveling, and then reinstalling the same pavers. Pavers also do not require time to cure. Paver structures can be used immediately after installation, where concrete can take 3 to 5 days before being ready for any kind of traffic. The high number of joints in the surface of pavers also promotes the drainage of water from rain and snow.

As you can see, in the long run pavers can easily cost less than concrete.  When you’ve decided that you need to spruce up that old walkway, driveway, pool deck or patio, contact Yanton’s Outdoor Living to schedule your complementary at-home estimate with one of our service professionals.   

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