When it's time to repave your driveway, you may be interested in looking into sustainable and environmental friendly options. Asphalt may not be the first material that comes to mind when you think green, but it may actually be the most sustainable option available if you want a hardtop driveway. The following are just three of the reasons why asphalt makes a good sustainable option for your paving project.
1. Choose a Recycled Option
Asphalt is infinitely recyclable, since it can simply be reheated and reused. Unlike other recycled items, like plastic, there is no degradation in recycled asphalt so it is just as high quality as virgin materials. Ask the paving contractors about recycling options when you are getting quotes on the work. Make sure that the contractor you hire uses predominantly recycled asphalt in their paving projects. If you are having the old driveway removed and replace, verify that they will recycle the old asphalt and not just haul it to the dump.
2. Opt for Permeable Paving
One issue with any type of paving is water loss, which isn't very environmentally friendly. When it rains, the water runs down the driveway where it quickly evaporates or is whisked away in the storm drain. This loss of natural moisture is hard on both the local floral and the water table as a whole. Porous or permeable asphalt has an aggregate added that leaves more spaces within the paving itself. You still have a smooth, hard surface to park on and the asphalt still has a long life, but moisture is able to slowly seep through the asphalt and into the ground below. As an added benefit, the porosity helps prevent black ice from forming, so the driveway is often less slick in winter.
3. Maintain for Longevity
The greenest thing you can do is maintain your driveway so that it rarely requires replacement. Asphalt can serve for decades if you stay on top of maintenance and repairs. Small cracks should be filled and sealed as soon as they appear so that the asphalt doesn't start to degrade. You can also prolong the life of the drive by having a sealcoating applied every two or three years. The sealcoat creates a weather seal that cuts down on damage from weathering and UV rays.
Asphalt can be the best option for your driveway, especially if you are looking for a sustainable option.
Contact a residential asphalt paving contractor for more information.