Should I Choose a Block Paving or Gravel Driveway?

GV Paving - Block paving

When you decide to install a brand new driveway in front of your home, it can be hard to decide between the many options available. Gravel driveways and block paving are some of the most popular types of driveway, despite being very different in appearance. This month, let’s take a closer look at the advantages and limitations of gravel driveways and block paving.

Advantages of Block Paving

Hard-wearing: block paving is typically constructed using stone or brick and is therefore highly durable. The surface below is levelled perfectly, with a high attention to detail to ensure that your blocks are level, which makes them pleasant to walk on, safe and far less likely to displace. All this makes for a driveway which is designed with life in mind.

Style options: there are as many colours, shapes and textures of blocks as there are types of stone. You are sure to find the right kind of blocks to enhance the look of your home and with hundreds of pattern options out there, add intrigue to the driveway.

Easy repairs: if a block becomes loose during the lifetime of the driveway, it’s remarkably easy to reinstall. Similarly, if your driveway is stained, it’s easier and more consistent to replace the affected blocks than it is to use unreliable methods such as chemical cleaners.

Years of driveway brilliance: as a quality piece of precision workmanship, a block paving driveway may require more time and investment, but it pays dividends by looking fantastic and being the most reliable form of driveway available. Come rain or shine, you’ll have no trouble with a quality block paved driveway installed by professionals.

Limitations of Block Paving

Less affordable: block paving may cost more for the initial outlay than other drives, however, you will reap what you sow as block paving driveways last decades with minimal maintenance and low rates of repair and replacement of blocks. It’s therefore a brilliant investment in your home. There’s also a block paving option for every budget.

Preparation time: if you are looking to prepare your home for sale and need a quick turnaround, a different surfacing option may be better for you. Because of the precision required to lay block paving professionally, there is a lot of preparation work that goes into this type of driveway to ensure good drainage, level surfacing and a pristine finish.

Advantages of a Gravel Drive

Low cost: compared to many other driveway materials, gravel is highly affordable but still looks great. If you don’t want to pay a large upfront cost or you have a lot of square footage to cover, gravel is the ideal choice.

Easy to install: gravel driveways are easier to lay than other surfacings. Experienced contractors are therefore able to get the work done in a reasonable amount of time, which is great if your project is time-sensitive or you are a property developer.

Style options: it’s easy to forget that there are dozens of gravel types to choose from. Each varies in size, colours, shape, textures and prices.

Low maintenance: there are other driveways that require even less maintenance, but sprucing up a gravel driveway twice a year and it will look attractive for many years to come.

Good drainage: having good drainage is priceless for homeowners who live in particularly wet locations. The loose surface structure and permeability of a gravel driveway avoids issues such as standing water and provides environmental benefits, too.

Limitations of Gravel

No gradients: unfortunately, gravel cannot be applied to excessively sloping driveways. This is because the loose structure will travel towards the bottom of the drive over time. It is also more difficult to walk on an incline that is covered in gravel, compared to other surfaces.

Weeds: many driveways suffer the problem of weeds, but gravel driveways in particular require a spraying of weedkiller over the surface. Before spring is best as this will make the subbase and stones themselves resistant to weeds for the coming months.

The GV Paving team apply over 25 years of industry experience to bring customers in Leicester, Loughborough, Nottingham and the surrounding areas award-winning driveways, patios and landscaping services. From garden walls and turf-laying to a wide array of driveway options, we’re proud to make your home look its best and provide years of faultless service. We’re a Marshalls Register contractor, too, so you can rest assured you’re in safe hands with a 10 year guarantee and independently assessed customers service standards. Call us today to discuss your latest project.