Out with the old:
Driveways in Canada are in a constant battle against nature and the elements. Weeds, ground shifting, freezing conditions and moisture expansion all wreak havoc with the integrity of your driveway, and nature always seems to win. The sight of cracked, pitted, shifted and heaving driveways is all too common and leaves the front of your home an unsightly mess.
Asphalt is an easy driveway choice as its cheap and simple; unfortunately, its always going to be the first to crack, sink and shift. Asphalt driveways are going to require regular repair and maintenance for its entire lifespan.
Concrete driveways offer a longer lifespan and are much stronger than asphalt, but they require a large upfront cost and involve a lot of excavation and site preparation to be installed properly and ensure they are as strong, structurally, as possible. As hard as concrete is however, given time, the freezing winter weather, expansion from moisture, and shifting of underlying surfaces will crack and shift the concrete. Overall, concrete provides a good option for new builds as it won't require tearing out an existing driveway as you are already starting from scratch. For the majority of people with existing driveways, concrete may be too expensive and time consuming for what it's worth.
Interlock is similar to concrete for driveways in that it requires a large upfront cost, as well as a huge amount of excavation and site preparation of the base surface for the driveway. Interlock also carries with it a huge possibility of shifting as the subsurface settles and deals with moisture, as well as the likelihood of weeds being a constant nuisance.
Newly built driveways present the opportunity to pick the option that best suits you, but many homes already have a driveway in rough condition and can't afford to tear it out and start from scratch. Finding a way to make what's already down work is a better option, and with rubber paving it's also a much easier option.
In with the new:
Rubber paving is a wet pour system consisting of rubber granules mixed with a polyurethane resin that is troweled onto an existing surface to create a seamless, tough, non-slip flooring. As a hand troweled paving system, it is capable of leveling uneven and sunken sections in the underlying surface to create a smooth, level finish in your rubber paved driveway, making it the perfect solution for old driveways that are more cracks and potholes than driveway anymore.
The mixture of granular rubber with a strong polyurethane resin binder provides a driveway with a high durability and longevity as the surface not only bonds to the underlying driveway, but the granules also create strong bonds to each other. This allows the rubber to stretch and come back as all of the granules are holding each other together, which means when the climate and weather try to break and shift your driveway, the rubber is going to actively resist that process and hold its shape.
Rubber driveways are able to be installed over nearly any solid existing base; however, granular stone bases require more material to create a stable driveway. A large benefit of rubber paving for your driveway lies in not having to tear out the existing surface. As an overlay product, demolition isn't required which keeps the cost down compared to other driveway surfaces, and installation time is fast with most jobs being completed in one day. A quick and clean install let's you worry less and get back to using your driveway faster.
Other pros for rubber driveways include that it's easily repairable, semi-porous to allow water drainage, prevents weeds from growing through, and resists ice buildup during the winter, as well as being easily able to be shoveled.
Driveways with rubber paving can utilize SBR recycled tire rubber, providing an eco-friendly as well as budget friendly driveway option. The main con when considering rubber driveways is that to create a driveway in a colour other than black requires EPDM virgin rubber granules, as well as a different resin, which increases the cost. The increased cost, however, comes with a much larger selection of colours and design options allowing you to create a driveway tailored to match your home.
A long life-span and minimal maintenance are the cherry on top for rubber paving driveways. Power washing to clean and a recommended reseal every 5-7 years let's you get the most out of your driveway with little effort to keep it in great shape.
For all those Canadian homeowners staring at their old, broken driveway and wondering what to do: rubber paving is the answer you were looking for.