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Should I Replace or Resurface My Driveway?


Tips to Resurface Driveway

When driveways start to lose their luster or are nearing the end of their lifespan, a lot of owners will consider the option of having their driveway resurfaced to cut costs. There are some cases when a good resurfacing job will do the trick. But in some other cases, you’ll have no choice but to have the whole driveway redone. So, how do you know when it’s better to replace or resurface your driveway?

How Resurfacing Works

Before you make your decision, you have to first understand how driveway resurfacing works to know if it’s right for your driveway. When a contractor comes over to resurface your driveway, they will remove the top layer first, which will be replaced by a fresh new one. If your asphalt pavement foundation is still in good condition, you could delay replacement for a good number of years with resurfacing. However, this is all dependent on whether you’re working with a good contractor.

Divots, potholes, and cracks will need to be fixed before resurfacing. Your new asphalt surface will only be as good as the asphalt below and working on a poor surface will eventually show up on the surface.

Asphalt Replacement

In case the damage on your driveway has reached the point of no return, most contractors will advise that you have the asphalt replaced. Even if resurfacing may seem like an affordable quick fix for now, constantly resurfacing will eventually cost much more than having the whole thing replaced. If your driveway is nearing 20-years-old, you should also consider replacement since it has probably already exceeded its lifespan.

What is the Best Option for Me?

It really all depends on the level of damage the driveway has sustained. If less than 30% of the asphalt needs repair, then you might be able to get away with resurfacing. The foundation also has to be in great condition in order for resurfacing to work long term. If there are any cracks, you should make sure that they are shallow and no wider than a quarter inch. Pavements that are under 20-years-old and have all those characteristics will usually be able to be fixed with a resurfacing job.

On the other hand, if more than a third of your driveway is in dire need of repairs, then replacement is usually a sounder choice. This is also the case if the foundation is unstable. If there are many large cracks and deep potholes, resurfacing usually won’t be enough either. Don’t cut corners and try to buy time by resurfacing and patching. Having the asphalt replaced now will allow you to have peace of mind for decades if you take care of it carefully, so take that into consideration before making any choice.


Your driveway is an important investment and one of the first things people notice when they get to your house. Make sure that you make a sound decision that will not only fix immediate problems but reduce costs in the long run.

Featured Image Source: Flickr


Written By:


CEO & Lead Interior Designer

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