Drive way up grade

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Posted by: from Toronto
8/19/2012 at 1:20:09 PM


My home driveway is 10' by 40' and I park one work van and a family van. The driveway is being used for 5 years and now its getting uneven and broken.

What are my options should I go for resurfacing with the existing one or it has to be redone. And how long does it last. And what price I am looking for each option.

Thanks in advance

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Hillary in Winnipeg
Date/Time8/19/2012 at 2:08:57 PM

Hi there,

If you do decided to reconstruct the driveway rather than resurface I would recommend installing paving stone. Paving stone is a lot more flexible and will shift rather than crack or sink. I know in Winnipeg it's an excellent option because of our freeze thaw during the winter months.

If it does sink in a spot it's very easy to life a few pavers and add base material underneath.

Paving stone runs about 14 to 15 dollars a square foot installed and that includes the removal and hauling of the existing driveway.

Thanks and good luck with the project :)


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Date/Time8/19/2012 at 3:55:34 PM

Hello Rizwan,

My advice: Don't go for resurfacing with the existing one! There is a reason why it its getting uneven and broken. And mostly it's not the concrete its self. In most cases it is the insufficient performed preparation work before the concrete was installed.

Outside you have freeze thaw during the winter months. This means, the frost goes under "normal" winter conditions until 2 feet deep into the ground. It depends on how many degrees Celsius it is under zero degree continues frozen.

And this is the reason why your concrete cracks. The "ground" below the concrete expand when it freezes. This process lifts up your driveway and the concrete gets smaller or bigger cracks. When it's getting warmer, the "ice" underneath the concrete melt's and the concrete go's usually back to its normal "position". However the concrete has now cracks where the water will go in.

Now imagine: The water will penetrate the cracks and remain in it. And everytime when it freezes again, the water in the cracks expands and brakes the concrete a bit more. This is why the surface getting uneven and broken.

Therefore you have to build your "concrete-bed" properly, so that the frost can't freeze the ground below the concrete and lift your driveway up! This essential !!! To achieve this you have to dig out your driveway about 2 1/2 feet, fill the pit with gravel (not sand!) and, THEREAFTER you can install the concrete or the paving stone. The 2 1/2 foot gravel acts like a "dry zone" where no water can remain. So this area can't freeze and expand and your "concrete or paving stone installation" can not lift up.

Notice: Don't dig out your driveway more than needed and then fill it off again with loose soil! If you do so, the loose soil has to be properly compressed before you do anything further. Otherwise it will be later compressed by the weight of your driveway which will result in sinking.


3D-Tile-Design - Bertram Tasch

Maple Ridge, BC (greater Vancouver)

(778) 886-9503

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Stephen from Bryers Contracting in Edmonton
Date/Time8/22/2012 at 10:06:32 AM

Depending on what exactly you want you can go either direction. Sometimes it's more of a hassle to resurface and can be more costly depending on whether or not issues arise in the progress, as for exact cost it would have to be looked at.

I don't just give a price for size, if the job looks to be real simple and easy then i can offer a better price. Others may just charge flat rates for square footage.

The driveway itself should last more than five years, if its already uneven after five i would say that the original ground either was not compacted properly or wrong kind of dirt was used to support the weight. Ground work is very important when supporting that much weight plus vehicles.

I would recommend the removal of old drive way, redo ground work then redo the drive way.

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