Paving Stone vs Other Pavement

Wanting to be the envy of the neighborhood?

Time to turn that ho-hum backyard into a work of art? Or perhaps, you are looking to add extra value to your home. One of the biggest misconceptions with paving stone is the COST. Well, if you think wooden decks and concrete pads are expensive, wait until you have to rebuild or replace them every five years. With paving stone, your investment will literally last a lifetime. Whether you are installing a driveway, patio, or sidewalks there are many different types of pavement to choose from. Paving stone is proven to be the one home improvement that will increase the value of your home. Let us break it down for you:

Paving Stone:

Appearance: 

  • Abundance of styles and color
  • Surface finishes and laying patterns that make it easy to integrate into any landscape
  • Low Voltage lighting makes it simple to integrate perfectly into any paving stone designs 
  • Adds beautiful and unique accents to landscapes

Strength and durability: 

  • Paving stone is very long lasting
  • Compressive strength three times that of slab concrete making it ideal for residential, commercial, and even industrial applications 
  • Ideal for Alberta winters where freeze-thaw cycles occur often

Initial Cost and Installation:

  • Cost is moderate and with such a variety of stone to choose from there is a stone for almost everyone’s budget
  • Easy installation makes it even more cost effective for do-it-yourselfers
  • Paving stone is immediately ready to use when installation is complete 

Maintenance: 

  • Paving stone is low maintenance and factor made pavers last for decades
  • Patterns and colors will not wear out with use
  • Easily repaired
  • Pavers can be easily removed to gain access to underground utilities and replaced when finished without any noticeable patches 

Snow Removal: 

  • Smooth surface of paving stones allows for easy snow removal
  • Pavers can be colored dark to promote faster melting 

Environmental Considerations: 

  • Paving stone is environmentally responsible
  • Pavers can be lifted and later reused in different applications
  • Allows water to penetrate through which is a benefit for trees planted nearby and also reduces runoff 

Concrete:

Appearance:

  • Generally grey, concrete can be colored on the surface or throughout
  • Cracks are almost certain to develop and occasional rust spots may emerge 

Strength and durability: 

  • Cracks in concrete occur from base settlement and heaving
  • Strength depends on many factors including where the concrete was mixed, the expertise of the installer, and the weather conditions at the time of the pour

Initial Cost and Installation: 

  • Concrete cost is moderate and quick to install
  • You must wait 5 to 7 days for hardening before use, 30 days is ideal

Maintenance: 

  • Concrete cracks cannot be repaired and become worse over time
  • Stains are very difficult to remove
  • Repairs and replaced sections leave unsightly patches 

Snow Removal: 

  • Light color does not accelerate snow melting
  • Easy plowing on smooth surfaces but watch for cracks and heaves

Environmental Considerations: 

  • No water will penetrate into the ground creating runoff 
  • Removed concrete has limited reusability and is taken to garbage landfills 

Stamped Concrete: 

Appearance: 

  • The surface of stamped concrete is usually colored
  • The patterns look good from a distance but can look artificial up close
  • Cracks will likely develop

Strength and durability: 

  • Stamped concrete is subject to cracking and heaving just as regular concrete

Initial Cost and Installation: 

  • Stamped concrete has a high cost and is difficult to install 
  • Stamped concrete requires special equipment to stamp stone or paver pattern into the surface
  • Adding colors to concrete increases price 

Maintenance: 

  • Stamped concrete has the same problems as with regular concrete
  • Problems occur when matching colors and patterns in repaired and replaced sections

Snow Removal: 

  • Darker colors will accelerate snow melting
  • The uneven surface of some patterns and finishes make plowing difficult 

Environmental Considerations: 

  • Slab concrete creates a water runoff when water is unable to penetrate through
  • Stamped concrete has limited reusability and it is destined for landfills 

Asphalt:

Appearance: 

  • Asphalt is generally black but other color options are available
  • Difficult to get neat looking edges, and cracks appear over time
  • Stamped asphalt is likely to look fake

Strength and durability:

  • Asphalt can develop cracks from heaving and settling
  • Subject to wear and weathering leading to surface breakdown

Initial Cost and Installation: 

  • Asphalt is low cost and goes in quickly
  • It can not be installed by the homeowner
  • Colors or patterns dramatically increases the price 

Maintenance: 

  • Asphalt has high maintenance and repaired cracks are highlighted by tatting
  • A black seal coat is required every few years and rut or pothole repairs can leave ugly patches
  • Stamped patterns will wear out in high traffic areas and disappear with time
  • Asphalt has a shorter lifespan than pavers or concrete
  • Oil in asphalt tends to tack in hot weather  

Snow Removal: 

  • The dark and relatively smooth surface accelerates snow removal

Environmental Considerations:

  • Oil used to make asphalt can end up in landfills when the limited life of the pavement expires
  • Detrimental to the environment as it could contaminate groundwater
  • Water is not able to penetrate through, causing runoff