recycled asphalt vs gravel
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Recycled Asphalt vs Gravel – Which Is Right for You?

Considering the number of materials and methods used when constructing driveways, selecting one can be quite challenging. Each material and methods used for driveways have its advantages and disadvantages. Hence when selecting a suitable material, it is essential to consider the best requirements. Recycled asphalt and gravel are two of the most used materials for constructing driveways; however, picking out one from the two will be a tough choice. As a result, we have compared recycled asphalt vs. gravel in this article, making it easier for you to choose between the two. The article compares the characteristics and the factors affecting when construction of a driveway. Thus, stick to the article and read till the end to find the best material for your driveway project.

What is Recycled Asphalt?

Before you determine which material is best for your driveway, it is better to understand what recycled asphalt is. Asphalt is best known because it is a recycled material that is produced using waste materials and reused to manufacture recycled asphalt. Hence, recycled asphalt is also economically friendly, contributing to a greener environment by reducing waste. As a result, recycled asphalt has turned out to be the top choice if you want to cover larger areas under a fixed budget.

What is Gravel?

The gravel, in contrast, is the traditional material made of rock fragments mixed with soil and clay to construct roads.

Gravel is also considered to be a cheaper method and requires lower maintenance. However, these roads may not be smooth as asphalt driveways because they are constructed primarily using rock fragments. Hence, you will have to maintain a low speed while driving on gravel roads because it will not be effective when you drive.

As a result, gravel roads can wear over time, creating potholes and dents on the road.

Which is More Durable, Recycled Asphalt or Gravel?

One of the essential factors to consider when selecting the best material for driveways is durability, as it decides the lifetime of the asphalt and how long your driveways can last in good condition.

Hence, considering the recycled asphalt and the gravel, both are durable if properly maintained. But when comparing the two materials, most road construction engineers recommend recycled asphalt because they harden over time, while gravel starts to wear with time.

One of the key features of recycled asphalt is also its durability. Since the materials used in the recycled asphalt are water resistant, it does not dissolve or wash in water.

When installing recycled asphalt on roads, a thick base is used with a binder layer to ensure the asphalt is strong. Hence the lifetime of the recycled asphalt can be guaranteed up to 30 years. But the materials used when constructing the gravel roads will absorb water and dissolve the materials, leading to potholes and rutting.

Hence analyzing the points above to determine which is more durable between recycled asphalt and gravel, it is evident that asphalt is ahead.

Which is More Cost-effective Recycled Asphalt or Gravel?

When considering which material you must use when constructing a driveway, the project’s cost plays a major role. Hence, both materials are considered cost-effective when comparing the cost of constructing driveways or roads using recycled asphalt or gravel. But, recycled asphalt can be more expensive than gravel because the project and materials are complicated. However, though the gravel is cheaper, it is not durable, and your investment in your gravel driveway will only last a short term.

Hence, recycled asphalt is cost-effective because the one-time investment is durable, and the materials are recyclable.

Recycled asphalt is also considered cost-effective because the materials used are 100% reusable. Hence you will have to spend less on a new asphalt project.

Which Requires More Maintenance, Recycled Asphalt vs Gravel?

Any materials you use for the driveway project will require maintenance to increase the lifetime. However, some materials may require more maintenance because they are not guaranteed to last long.

When the recycled asphalt and gravel are compared, the gravel will need extra effort to maintain, especially in wet weather, because the gravel project’s materials will get washed and dissolved as it absorbs water. Still, recycled asphalt, in contrast, is effortless to maintain, as the element used in the project is resistant to water and eventually hardens the pathway over time. It is also easier to clean recycled asphalt driveways than gravel roads because less dust and debris contact the surface.

Which is More Environmentally Friendly, Recycled Asphalt or Gravel?

As previously discussed, recycled asphalt is more environmentally friendly than gravel because the materials used in the asphalt are 100% reusable. As a result, you will require fewer new sources like oil for your next asphalt driveway project.

Another reason recycled asphalt is more environmentally friendly is that it reduces the driveways’ dust and debris. But using gravel can also lead to water pollution if the driveways create portholes.

Which is Better for your Project: Recycled Asphalt vs Gravel?

Though recycled asphalt and gravel are two popular choices when constructing driveways, there are clear few differences between the two types considering the facts above in the article.

The recycled asphalt is more durable as it hardens, while the gravel wears with time. Though recycled asphalt is more expensive than gravel, it is cost-effective because it lasts longer.

Hence taking recycled asphalt and gravel into consideration, asphalt is most recommended because they last longer, are quicker to complete, and are environmentally friendly. But if you are considering completing a driveway project temporarily or under a low budget, using gravel becomes your handy option.

What are the Disadvantages of Using Recycled Asphalt?

It is accepted that everything will have its pros and cons. Hence if you are wondering about the disadvantages of using recycled asphalt, the only drawback you will notice is that recycled asphalt is less aesthetic. The dull color of the recycled asphalt and the plain look may not please you because it makes the driveway boring and less attractive.

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