Just because concrete is among the hardiest driveway materials out there, that doesn’t mean you can shirk your maintenance duties. If neglected for an extended period, a concrete driveway will eventually succumb to the elements and start to show visible signs of wear and tear.
Let’s take a look at seven do’s and don’ts so you can maintain your concrete driveway in tip-top condition for decades to come.
1. Do Insist On A Professional Contractor
Opting for a fly-by-night concrete driveway contractor is a sure-fire way to get a substandard final product. On top of that, if they don’t properly lay the foundations or use low-quality materials, then the extra maintenance will end up costing you more in the long run. Prevention is better than cure, after all.
Insist on going with a qualified and experienced company who know the process inside out. Ask around your social networks for recommendations or read through a selection of online reviews.
2. Don’t Let Heavy Vehicles Park There For A Long Time
Large vehicles such as trucks and buses will eventually exert enough pressure onto a concrete driveway to damage the surface. As a result, it’s wise to avoid parking these vehicles on your driveway long-term and look for an alternative option such as the street or a parking lot instead.
Having said that, concrete is robust enough to withstand the strength of an oversized vehicle for a week or two. Therefore, you needn’t worry too much should your in-laws decide to visit for the weekend in their R.V.
3. Do Be Careful When Shovelling Snow
For the small proportion of people lucky enough to experience snow in Australia, it’s vital to take due care when clearing the white stuff from your driveway each morning.
The sharp edges of your standard metal shovel will chip into the concrete and create unsightly marks. Although these may appear minor at first, the scuffs will accumulate over time and eventually ruin the entire aesthetics of your driveway. Thankfully, the solution is easy: opt for a plastic shovel, which is just as effective but won’t damage your driveway.
4. Don’t Let Water Accumulate
Large pools of water will seep into your concrete driveway and saturate the bedrock underneath. Over time, this process erodes the soil and can cause the driveway to crack, sink, or become uneven. The easiest way to resolve this issue is not to build a driveway in a drainage area in the first place.
If your concrete driveway already lies somewhere that’s prone to flooding, then it pays to be vigilant in keeping it dry. Keep a floor squeegee close at hand to quickly clean the driveway of any excess water after heavy rain.
5. Do Remember To Reseal Your Driveway
Concrete needs to be resealed to maintain its strength and aesthetics. Exactly how often you should reseal your concrete driveway depends on several factors such as the weather in your area and the amount of vehicle traffic the driveway receives. On the whole, a standard residential driveway should be resealed every two years to remain in good working order. Business driveways in heavy use usually need to be resealed more often than that. A concrete sealer can be purchased from just about any hardware, and the process is simple enough to DIY.
6. Don’t Let Roots Grow Underneath
Never underestimate the power of the tree root, as these tough organic tentacles are capable of wriggling their way through just about anything imaginable–including concrete. And once they’re in, tree roots will create cracks and eventually upend your entire driveway.
Thankfully, you don’t have to forgo planting trees in your front yard as there are two easy solutions at hand.
- Plant your trees far away from the driveway or build your driveway far from any trees
- Install tree root barriers around your driveway to stop the roots from getting in.
7. Do Clean Up Any Stains Straight Away
If you inadvertently spill something like oil, petrol, or grease over your concrete driveway, then be sure to clean it up quickly. Cleaning up a nasty liquid is far easier when done straight away; so don’t dally. If you’re having trouble getting it out, rest assured that you can remove most concrete stains with a combination of a pressure hose and the right chemical dissolvent.
Regardless of whether you’ve got everyday plain concrete or a funky coloured concrete driveway, sticking to a proper maintenance routine is a sure-fire way to enhance its longevity. If you’re looking to install a driveway within the greater Melbourne region, don’t hesitate to get in contact with the team at Simply Driveways.