Driveway: block paved v resin v stamped concrete

(44 Posts)
Babs709 Mon 24-Aug-20 17:33:22

Can anyone tell me about their experience putting in a new driveway?

We currently have block paved but can only fit one car so want to redo so two can fit side by side.

How do the three compare... costs, maintenance?

Does anyone have any opinions on which they think look nicer? Or even have a fancy driveway that they want to show me?

We have quite a large area at the front of the house so it needs to look good, but that also means the costs could really add up!

We have a quote for block paving at 10k and I’m just not sure that what I want, and would love to spend less 😉

OP’s posts: |
NewnameOldposter Mon 24-Aug-20 17:36:09

I'm going to follow this. We currently have a message X of poured concrete and block paving, which is full of weeds.

Would love a more maintenance free option

Babs709 Mon 24-Aug-20 17:47:58

Is it split or is the block paving on top of poured concrete?

I’m leaning towards stamped concrete and would be interested to hear from those who have it.

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PigletJohn Mon 24-Aug-20 17:50:48

block paving can be lifted if necessary for pipes or something and will accomodate slight ground movement, but concrete will crack. If concrete is properly laid with a good MOT base and correct thickness, poured in alternate bays, it should not crack, but looks a bit industrial. I like to see it with paving brick edging. A lot of concrete is laid to a poor standard. Avoid itinerant workmen. Drive around your area looking for drives being laid, photograph the name and number on the van or sign and the address, have a look a few months later and see if it looks OK, speak to the homeowner if possible.

Ask the contractor how deep they will dig out the old; how deep the MOT will be; how thick the concrete will be. Ask for this to be specified in writing on the quote, and ask if he will mind you checking it with your tape measure during the work. Skimping on materials improves profits and reduces quality.

Resin glued gravel looks attractive and from what I can see does not crack e.g. from tree roots under it. It may hold dirt so needs to be laid with a good fall so rainwater washes it.

Block paving suffers from ants digging out the sand and can then sink in patches. You can keep it weed-free with occasional treatments of Pathclear, or more frequent treatments with other weedkillers. In a shaded damp area it will get moss in the joints. "Wet and Forget" will kill the moss.

It is very important that paving is not laid against house walls so that it is less than nine inches below the damp course. it must slope away from the house. This is why old drives need to be dug out and not just have a new one on top. Search for "why is my house damp" to see why.

Paving Expert is an excellent source of information.

MaisyMary77 Mon 24-Aug-20 17:53:13

I’ve got a stamped concrete patio. Sorry-I know it’s not the same as a driveway. smile I really like it. Looks lovely, no maintenance and was put in really quickly. A neighbour has a stamped concrete driveway. It’s easily 10 years old and still looks very smart.

Babs709 Mon 24-Aug-20 17:56:33

Thank you PigletJohn so helpful as always! I’ll have a good mull over your post and do some further research.

I like the look of block paving but DH hates the weeds (and we are awful at keeping on top of them). Our current (block paved) driveway is A good few decades old so I wonder if a new driveway would be less susceptible to weeds.

OP’s posts: |
PigletJohn Mon 24-Aug-20 18:53:40

A packet of weedkiller is cheaper than a new drive.l


Babs709 Mon 24-Aug-20 18:56:31

Tell me more about this “weedkiller....”

No, I joke. The change is so we can park next to each other without having to faff around moving cars and vans. He’s keen to move away from block paved but I quite like it. But he’s right that I don’t keep on top of the weeds!

OP’s posts: |
Floralnomad Mon 24-Aug-20 18:59:41

We have block paving and like pp said it’s so much easier for maintenance , for example we are currently having fibre internet put in and Open reach have been here today taking the side of the driveway up and it can all be put back tomorrow and no one will know they’ve been . If we had tarmac or resin there would be an obvious new patch .

Landlubber2019 Mon 24-Aug-20 19:02:54

We have yellow block paving which I'm cold icy weather, becomes an absolute ice rink. Normally I end up at a&e once a year following a slip 👿

Erictheavocado Mon 24-Aug-20 19:31:36

We have block paving which is on a cement base and is cemented rather than using sand. We also have a narrow flowerbed at either side, so no issues if water company etc ever need access. Still looks great after almost 18 years. A close friend has a resin drive which looks like gravel. It looked lovely when new but over the years has needed several repairs and now looks quite tatty - the repaired areas are really noticeable. I don't know what the cost comparison was, but I know it cost a lot more than ours. Some neighbours have the stamped concrete and, to be honest, that was our first choice. I can't remember now what made us go with the block paving, but I'm glad we did.

mrsmonkey14 Mon 24-Aug-20 21:27:52

I wanted resin, but the cost was prohibitive for the size of the drive. We ended up with tarmac with an aura stone edging, and it actually looks very smart.

CaurnieBred Mon 24-Aug-20 21:35:31

One of the houses near us had the pressed concrete stuff. Not long after it was done something needed work (water main?) which ended up with some of it being dug up. It looks terrible.
Have attached an image (under skip). This would put me off ever getting it done

Isthisanokname Mon 24-Aug-20 21:36:18

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Babs709 Mon 24-Aug-20 21:39:07

Ouch caurnie that’s hard to look at.

@Erictheavocado did your water pipe happen to be under the flower bed or did you move it there? I’m not sure what’s possible. We’ve got beautiful borders on both sides so I’d be keen to keep them. I wonder if that could help the problem with repairs underneath.

This is all great thanks - didn’t know tarmac was an option and don’t want to end up in A&E so all things to consider!

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zurala Mon 24-Aug-20 21:41:00

Resin is expensive. We were quoted 10k for an area equivalent to 2 cars. We plan to have block paving as I don't like the idea of concrete being patched in future.

Babs709 Mon 24-Aug-20 21:42:45

@Isthisanokname yes I must admit I do think resin looks smart. Interesting that you think they may be more expensive.

I had a quote for block paved at the beginning of the year which was about £10k. A resin chap came round a few months back and quoted £14k; but it was one of those magic quotes that started at £20k and “this one time right now deal” meant knocking £6k off, so I’m never trusting of those people.

Hard to know if these quotes are typically what we can expect or particularly cheap/expensive. Annoyingly I think I’m going to have to get a handful of each to really compare. But something tells me resin is out of our price bracket.

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tabulahrasa Mon 24-Aug-20 21:55:05

I’ve got stamped concrete... I don’t remember what the price difference is, but it was loads cheaper than blocks.

It has cracked fairly recently, but still doesn’t look as bad as newer block drives than mine is tbh and it’s been down about 15 years.

AdoreTheBeach Mon 24-Aug-20 22:00:05

I have a stamped concrete patio. We’ve had it at least 10years. Very cheap compared to anything else. The laying of it though was the same amount of work as block paving (base and sub base) so I’d believe the work for a driveway would be the same. You’d be saving huge amounts in the materials as compared to block paving

HOWEVER the colour does not last. Itcstasts to fade, fades unevenly abd starts to look rather bizarre

If you have the funds, go for block paving. Ensure it’s done by reputable firm. Every so often (months) if you spray with weed killer if you needs it then brush with stiff broom. That’s all we need do with out block is easy driveway. Ours is large enough for 5 cars and us very easy to maintain.

LizB62A Mon 24-Aug-20 22:06:17

Whatever you choose, just make sure they put sufficient drainage in, or keep some of it as actual garden (as that tends to drain better).
We've had loads of front drives flooding round here as they weren't built with the right drainage.

Isthisanokname Mon 24-Aug-20 22:07:26

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Phoenix76 Mon 24-Aug-20 22:17:35

Are you planning to match whatever you’re putting down to existing, i.e if block paving matching the existing paving or keep the existing block paved and having a different look for the “extension”? Also, what area are we talking about roughly. PigletJohn’s post is excellent. I work in this area (not laying but the products, supplying the ground workers).

SuperFairy Mon 24-Aug-20 22:23:04

I’m in the same boat, looking at options. My drive including paths is (according to 4 quotes) 115sq m or m sq whichever is less,I always forget 😂

Anyway, we are having to go with tarmac with brick edging, purely due to cost, our drive will be just over £7500 to replace. If you want, tomorrow I can detail the full tarmac specification for you.

Cuddling57 Mon 24-Aug-20 22:38:32

We walk the dog past two lovely large houses that had resin driveways. They looked great at first and I can't imagine either owner went for a cheap company. Both drives showing long cracks now. I would never get resin.

Cottipus Mon 24-Aug-20 23:20:20

We have recently replaced our old driveway and side path with tarmac. Chose that due to cost and wanting something low maintenance, had a quote a few years back for some nice cobble effect pavers but it was more than double the price of tarmac.

I would maybe get a driveway or hard landscaping company in to give some advice and rough idea of costs.

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