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One Of A Kind Driveways
Written by Elizabeth Wood
Editor In Chief, United Home Improvement

Driveways are a distinctive element to your homes exterior appearance. Several things need to be taken into consideration when deciding upon the driveway that is right for you and your home. Consider your landscaping, the condition of your soil, drainage, and the freeze and thaw cycles of your region. In addition to all of these factors, you will have to select the material in which your driveway will be constructed of.

Driveway Material Options:

• Concrete: A long lasting material (up to 30 years), requires little maintenance, significantly less expensive than other materials. Can be given unique textures, can be colored, and shaped. You can brush and finish your concrete driveway to give it a smooth/slippery texture, or a more rigid texture. Offers superior durability, skid resistance, abrasion and scuffing residence. Also, the way light is reflected off concrete driveways make them safe for the family. Easy to clean. Decorative (stamped, stenciled, colored, exposed aggregate)

• Stone: Very attractive and easy to maintain. Comes in an array of colors, sizes and finishes. Offers great drainage and a non-slip surface. Stone driveways will increase the value of your home. However, they are difficult to clean and will need to be re-stoned in order to maintain it's lasting appeal. Incredible ability to withstand extreme weather conditions. You also have the option of mixing stone with concrete to create a style of your own.

• Brick: Traditional surfacing material. Very simply to work with. Comes in several colors, can be arranged in unique patterns, available in standard shapes and sizes, and offers a non-slip surface. Brick is a recyclable material, durable, easily replaced, reusable, and requires little maintenance.

• Pavers: Low-cost and decorative surface material. Interlocking pavers can withstand a significant amount of weight and endure extreme weather conditions. They come in a variety of shapes and colors that allow you to be creative with your landscaping. They are also crack resistant and easy to maintain.

• Compressed Earth: Well suited for rustic areas and country living. In order to maintain the look and feel of a compressed earth driveway, you will need to keep the grass between the track cut low and provide efficient drainage. Most definitely your cheapest option.

• Asphalt: Cost effective alternative to concrete. Asphalt comes in decorative options, can be re-layered, requires a certain amount of maintenance to ensure a long life, makes snow removal easy, and can withstand dramatic temperature changes. It is a strong, durable driveway material this is commonly used.

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