Discover the best ways to repair small cracks or potholes in your front garden with our handy drive repair guide.
Why bother with Driveway Repair?
Maintaining a solid, even driveway with regular and frequent driveway repairs is important if you don’t want to damage your vehicles upon entry – small cracks or holes in the cement or asphalt can cause you car or van to buckle as it enters your property, and if it then knocks a gate, fence or piece of paving you will have even more repairs to fork out for – which isn’t ideal in the current economic climate.
Additionally, a smooth level driveway is important as it…
- Keeps your front-garden looking neat and tidy.
- Prevents you and your family (as well as guests and visitors) from tripping or hurting themselves when coming in and out of the home.
- Also ensures there is no opportunity for harm to come to nocturnal animals or you or your neighbours’ pets that might regularly come and go across the property.
- Allows for regular surface run-off after heavy rainfall – preventing your home and garden from localised or flash-flooding.
To help you get started, we have organised ways to repair a driveway into two distinct categories, based on the underlying material your drive is made from: concrete driveway repair, and asphalt driveway repair.
Concrete Driveway Repair
Concrete is a course material composed of bonded aggregates that cement together during a liquefying process, before being laid onto a surface and being hardened in dry, warm weather. As a result, concrete is extremely hard and usually only becomes more sturdy over time – although in areas with fluctuating temperatures this does mean it is prone to becoming brittle – which can contribute to extensive crack formations (on your driveway, for instance). To repair concrete driveways you will need to do one or more of the following:
- Clean the surface with soapy water and a hard broom to bring any debris to the surface before it can be cleared properly.
- Apply rubberised crack sealant to any marks, cracks or thin holes in the surface of the concrete driveway.
- Hire a professional contractor to fill any ‘spider-web’ or wide cracks that can’t be filled with sealant bought from a local DIY store.
Asphalt Driveway Repair
Like concrete, asphalt (also known as bitumen) is an under-laying building material composed of various aggregates, but unlike concrete it is primarily made of a black, sticky substance not dissimilar to liquid petroleum. Asphalt doesn’t crack as easily as concrete, but it does melt at lower temperatures – and is therefore more prone to becoming warped and misshapen over time. To repair asphalt driveways you will also need to do one or more of the following:
- Apply at least two coats of bitumen sealant over cracked or warped areas of the drive.
- Replace large holes or gaps in the asphalt driveway with a new mixture of cold-patch and/or hot asphalt (which you can purchase from hardware stores and mix yourself).
- Hire a professional contractor to professionally clean your drive and fill gaps with sealant or hot asphalt if you are unable to do it yourself.
Although it is tempting to try and clean and repair your driveway all by yourself, if you lack the right sort of experience you might make the problem worse (and therefore more expensive to fix); so if you are unsure or lack the confidence to get started, we always recommend hiring a professional contractor instead.