Resurface Or Replace Your Concrete Driveway: 2 Factors That Matter In This Decision

11 September 2015
 Categories: Construction & Contractors, Blog


Are you getting tired of the way your old concrete driveway looks? If so, resurfacing it or replacing it could brighten up the way it looks, and this would also make your entire front yard look nicer. The trouble is deciding which option to choose. Resurfacing it would be a less costly way to repair it, but this option is not always the best. Here are two ways concrete contractors determine whether to resurface or replace concrete driveways.

Type And Amount Of Deterioration

Before a decision can be made about which option to choose, a concrete contractor will need to come and see the concrete. Every situation is different, and this is not an answer you can get over the phone. The first thing the contractor will examine is the amount and type of deterioration.

Concrete will wear out over time, even though it is extremely durable, and the two signs that the contractor will look for are cracks and chipping. Cracks are normal in concrete; however, they should not result in unevenness in the concrete. Unevenness is often due to tree roots growing under the surface.

Chipping occurs as the concrete wears out, but chipping can be minor or major. If your entire driveway is chipping away and you can see loose aggregate on it, it most likely means your driveway is shot.

Contractors also examine how deep the issues are. If they are just on the surface of the concrete, resurfacing it may be satisfactory. If the issues extend inches into the concrete, it is probably better to rip it out and replace it.

Condition Of Subbase

The second important factor in this decision is the condition of the subbase. The subbase is the area below the concrete. If this area is sturdy and strong, your concrete driveway will probably not need to be replaced. If the area has signs of erosion, or if it was not built properly, the contractor may suggest ripping out the driveway to replace the subbase and the concrete.

The subbase holds the concrete in place and gives it a foundation. You cannot repair a concrete surface that has a failing subbase.

Resurfacing a driveway costs around $2.25 per square foot, which is cheaper than the cost to rip out a driveway and install a new one. The average cost to install a new concrete driveway is $4.56 to $6.34 per square foot, but this does not include the costs of ripping out the old driveway.

If you would like to find out what your options are, contact a concrete contractor like Robert R. Andreas & Sons Inc. He can come to your home to examine your driveway, and he will then be able to give you options and quotes for services.