At Mr. Pavement, our specialty is asphalt, but we deal with a lot of concrete, too. Both are incredibly sturdy and durable surfaces that can be used to build parking lots, pathways, driveways, and more. While both substances are made from similar materials, they have their differences. Here are some that our concrete paving company have noted:
Both asphalt and concrete are similar substances made from aggregate. They’re both poured in a semi-solid fashion and dry to a hard material. While concrete is made from materials like water, rocks, sand, and cement, asphalt is made from a sticky black form of petroleum mixed with sand, stone, or gravel.
Asphalt is durable enough to last 30 or 40 years, if properly maintained. However, concrete can last up to 50 years. While both are strong and dependable, which you choose may depend on what you’re using it for. For areas of high traffic, like sidewalks or parking lots, concrete is a slightly better choice. You may also consider where you’re using it. If you live in the Midwest, where paved areas see frigid temperatures during the winter, you may want to choose asphalt. Asphalt won’t crack as easily under cold temperatures and because it’s black, it can help melt snow and ice faster.
When it comes to repairs, both materials can be seen as equal in costs. Asphalt may require more maintenance and repairs, but they’ll generally be cheaper. Concrete, on the other hand, may not require as much maintenance or as many repairs, but when it does, it’s usually more expensive.
While asphalt comes in just one color, black, concrete can be colored and can be stamped into specific patterns to make it a little more elegant.
Asphalt driveways or parking lots can be laid in 1-2 days and can be walked on or driven on one day later. Concrete, on the other hand, can be laid in 2-4 days and needs time to cure. This means you can’t walk or drive on concrete for about 5-7 days.
Because asphalt is made with petroleum, price tends to fluctuate with the price of oil. However, it tends to be more cost effective than concrete, which is why most people use it for their driveways and parking lots. Before you decide, get an estimate on each material.