Three Mistakes That Can Ruin A Concrete Driveway

When putting in a new concrete paved driveway, your goal is likely to keep it in good condition for as long as possible. Fortunately, durable concrete can last quite a long time with proper care. There are a few things that can damage it, though. Avoiding the following mistakes will help prolong the life of your driveway.

#1: Ignoring fluid leaks

One of the quickest ways to ruin your paving is to allow fluid to leak from your car. Oil and other car fluids leave ugly stains that can be difficult or even impossible to remove. If your car has a leak or if you sometimes work on vehicles in the driveway, use a garage mat. These mats slide beneath the engine of the car and absorb any fluids that leak out so they don't reach the pavement. You can store them in the garage when they aren't needed. As an added bonus, they will protect you from laying directly on the hard concrete when you are working on your car.

#2: Using salt to melt ice

An icy driveway is unsafe, but salt isn't the answer. Although salt can melt ice quickly, it will also cause pits to form on the concrete. The weakened concrete surface will then begin to chip and crumble. A better option is to shovel the driveway promptly before any snow has a chance to turn to ice. Skip shovels with metal edges, as these can damage the concrete surface. A snowblower also works well, if you have one available. If you must use something to melt ice, choose an actual chemical ice melt product instead of using rock salt. Then, sweep up the excess once the ice has melted.

#3: Planting trees nearby

Shade trees can be a great addition to your landscape, but be careful about where you plant them. Planting a shade tree too close to your paved driveway can be a major mistake once the roots start to spread. Tree roots are quite powerful, so if one grows under the paving, it can eventually lift the driveway slab or cause it to crack. If you already have trees near your driveway and don't want to remove them, you can install a root barrier. This metal barrier is buried in a trench next to your driveway, where it prevents roots from growing underneath the driveway.

For more help, contact a paving contractor in your area.