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Wide block paving driveway in front of a large house

How do I know when to replace my driveway?


Generally, the age of a driveway is the first point to consider when wondering if it is time to replace your driveway. Maybe you have no idea how long ago your driveway was originally installed, especially if you only acquired your property recently, so this guide will help you to know what to look out for and the signs that indicate your driveway is past its best. Maybe there are obvious signs of wear and tear and you’re not sure whether to just repair the existing drive or to pay to replace the driveway. Small issues should be repaired immediately before you have major problems to contend with. It is often more cost effective to replace the driveway if it has been there a while, as you will need to pay for a new covering some time soon so why pay for the extra expense of repairs now. Installing a new attractive driveway not only enhances the exterior of your home, it is surprising the improvement a new driveway can make to the overall appearance, and can also add to the value of the property. So when you ask how do I know when to replace my driveway look out for the following signs:


Standing Water

Any obvious pools of standing water on your driveway indicate a drainage problem and you might want to replace your driveway. Driveways should be sloped to create a runoff but over time depressions, pits and ruts can create spaces for water to pool. With any signs of poor drainage It is also worth checking if these are a result of structural damage because if left untreated these can cause major problems.

Over time water can work its way under the top layer of asphalt, particularly if the surface is cracked, this will create structural problems, particularly in the winter when the extreme temperatures could freeze the water causing the asphalt to expand and contract.


Should I replace my driveway when there is Raveling on the surface?

With Asphalt driveways the aggregate can come loose from the binder and you may find loose pieces of gravel, or discover that the surface is starting to pit.

Any signs of raveling need to be attended to immediately as the issue can quickly spiral out of control as larger pieces will begin to break away and the surface will become more uneven.


Driveway Covered in Alligator Cracks

Alligator cracks is the term given to when the surface of your driveway develops a series of overlapping cracks that divides the surface into small sections, resembling the skin of an alligator. Extensive cracking can be a sign that the subbase under the driveway is no longer supportive and unfortunately we would advise replacing the subbase and topcoat to have a strong durable covering that will last for many years.


Pot Holes in Your Driveway

If you haven’t dealt with alligator cracks straight away then you may find that larger portions of the cracked pieces have broken away leaving larger cracks and pot holes, making the uneven surface unsafe. Sometimes when the potholes have been filled to repair, water can still seep through the tiny cracks making the problems worse below the surface, so we would always recommend that you replace the driveway once the damage has reached this point.


Do You Need to Replace the Driveway When it has Faded

If the driveway has been there for some time often it will have faded in the sun as the UV rays oxidise the surface encouraging it to become patchy. It is also likely stained by oil or petrol. It might be that the driveway when it was originally installed matched and complimented the exterior of your home but now it has faded and is an eyesore at the front of your property. It might not be neccessary to replace the driveway yet but it is a sign that it has been there for many years and so will need replacing in the near future.


Multiple Failures in Your Driveway

Not all cracking signifies that the whole driveway needs to be replaced. Longitudinal cracks that run along the length of the driveway and Transverse cracks that run across the driveway can often be filled successfully if they are not too big. However, when these cracks multiply and turn into alligator cracks water can enter through many points and it is usually a sign of a fundamental problem with the subbase or just an over tired surface. It is also an idea to look out for breaks around the edge of the driveway which can lead to crumbling. If you find you are constantly paying for repairs to your cracked surface and the surface is quite old, it would make more sense to start again and replace the driveway with a finished product that will last you for many years to come with little maintenance.


Do You Need to Replace the Driveway?

Hopefully, you now have more of an idea about whether to repair or replace your driveway surface. If small problems are addressed early by a professional team they can often be repaired satisfactorily. When obvious major damage across the whole of the surface is visible or a multitude of problems have arisen such as the rain water not running off it will be more cost effective to replace the driveway.


Driveways replaced in Preston

If you are asking yourself the question do I need to replace my driveway then we can help with the answer, at Redline we have over 25 years experience working in Preston, Bolton and Lancashire and have built up a reputation for excellent workmanship, offering a reliable and professional service, which can be seen by our many 5 star reviews; we can evaluate your specific situation to give you expert advice. Give us a call on 0800 2927908 to arrange a time for a consultation or arrange a free quote for any work agreed by contacting us online. If you are not sure which material and finish to use our handy guide What is the best surface for my driveway? May be helpful.


Preston Office

Office 501
City House
131 Friargate


Leyland Office

317 Golden Hill Lane,
PR25 2YJ


Contact us:

Mob: 07903 937995
Tel: 01772 977 866

Tel: 0800 2927908
Tel: 07903 937995