WHERE DO I START WHEN PLANNING A NEW CONCRETE DRIVEWAY? It's important to do your homework and be prepared as part of your "project management", which is why we've put together a few tips to help you get started.
What's the cost of a concrete driveway?
Some of the following factors will be taken into consideration when pricing your driveway:
- The size of your driveway and the amount of excavation required
- Site condition and the amount of preparing required for installation
- Does an old driveway need to be removed first?
- Is dirt or rubbish being removed by the contractor?
- The finish you’d like; plain, coloured, stamped, stencilled.
What should I consider when selecting a concrete contractor?
- Make certain your contractor is licensed and insured.
- Compare quotes, ensuring all works is factored and written into your contract agreement including preparation, installation, rubbish removal. Not all "cheaper quotes" offer "best value".
- Review testimonials and Google reviews.
What will the qualified concreter do to minimise the chance of driveway cracking?
Although there are many factors concreters cannot control, including extreme wet and hot conditions which can impact concrete foundations, detailed below are a few things qualified concreters will do to reduce the chance your driveway cracking:
- Prepare your site adequately prior to installation of driveway
- Install controlled joints
- Have a strong steel base
- Cut to sections or install metal bar to allow concrete expansion and movement
- Have enough thickness of good quality concrete
How do I care or maintain a new concrete driveway after installation?
- Sealing your driveway protects it from wear and tear.
- Avoid using harsh chemicals to clean it where possible.
How long does it take for concrete to cure for use?
There are several factors to be considered including the depth of concrete poured, the temperature outside, and the type of cement used in the mix. Although concrete will harden several hours after it's poured, it's important to remember it is still susceptible to damage from the weight, especially during the first four weeks. As a general guide, wait at least 48 hours before allowing foot traffic on a newly poured sidewalk, driveway or slab. Don't drive vehicles on a new driveway for at least 10 days, and up to 28 days for heavy vehicles such as a 4WD, Caravan or Truck. We highly recommend you speak with your chosen installer to discuss their "after install user guidelines".
- How long will my new driveway installation take to complete?
- Does the contractor manage council approval, or will you need to? If the contractor is managing council approval, ensure you obtain copies of approvals.
- Does your local council require new crossing and footpath? If it is your responsibility to install, is this included in your quote?
These and other points should be added to your list of questions to discuss when meeting with your concrete contractor.
- If you can't use your driveway for a set period of time, before driveway works commence, consider if you have a second access point for items such as wheelie bins for council rubbish pick up.
- Get the look you want. Do your homework and consider size, style and the look you would like before proceeding with quotes. Inspirations can be found on Pinterest, Instagram and in Magazines.
- What finish options can I consider? You can opt for a range of finishes including brush, troweled, swirl, exposed aggregate, polished, coloured, and stencilled finish for pathways and driveways. The expert Piercrete Group consultant has examples to guide you through the selection process.
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