How Can You Choose the Best Gravel for a Driveway?

Are you searching for an attractive and cost-effective way to upgrade your driveway? While installing a new concrete driveway can be a little pricey, with the cost reaching tens of thousands of dollars, the average gravel driveway can cost approximately $1500 – $2000, making it a budget-friendly option.

However, the main concern about laying down the gravel driveway is choosing appropriate gravel. Remember that not all types of gravel are durable enough to withstand the weight or your car or the constantly changing pressure. But using glass chippings along with suitable gravel can provide your driveway with incredible durability.

This article will uncover the benefits of gravel driveways and how you can choose the best gravel for your driveway.

Advantages of Gravel Driveways

Are you still confused about whether to choose gravel for your driveway? Read further to learn a few benefits of gravel driveways:

  • Design versatility: You can find an array of gravel colours, shapes, and sizes, allowing you to create a driveway that complements your home’s exterior and personality.
  • Budget-friendly: Unlike other driveway solutions like concrete, turf, or tarmac, gravel driveway is budget-friendly and easier to install.
  • Easier to install: Unlike their driveway surfaces that take much time, a gravel driveway can be installed easily and quickly.
  • Low maintenance: A gravel driveway will aid in suppressing weeds, and thus, you don’t have to mow, trim, or water it frequently.
  • Drainage: A gravel driveway will provide excellent rainwater drainage, preventing it from accumulating water.
  • Highly durable: You can make your driveway highly durable by mixing the coloured glass chippings into gravel aggregate.

Factors to Consider to Choose the Best Gravel for a Driveway

Below are some vital factors you should consider to selecting the suitable gravel for your driveway:

The use of your driveway

First, you should consider how you plan to use the driveway at your property. For instance, if your driveway will see vehicles coming on and off, your best choice is to go with an angular aggregate size between 14mm to 20mm. Gravels of this size can knit together to form a compact surface, letting your driveway withstand high vehicle traffic. In addition, you can add an extra layer of durability to your gravel driveway by mixing glass chippings.

The shape of the gravel

When it comes to the shape of gravel, it is worthwhile to select angular gravel instead of rounded ones. Angular gravels don’t displace easily and form a more stable surface. On the other hand, rounded gravel, such as marine washed aggregates, is not considered suitable for driveways as it can rut easily whenever a vehicle drives on it and produces an unstable surface.

The size of the gravel

Almost every professional landscaper recommends using gravel between 14mm and 20mm for driveways. Anything larger can damage your driveway if gravel gets flicked onto your car. Moreover, gravel larger than 20mm can move and shift, making it difficult for people to walk on the driveway.

Always avoid choosing smaller-sized gravels at around 10 mm or less, as they can get stuck in your vehicle’s tyre treads. Popular gravel choices ranging between 14mm and 20mm include buff chippings, gold gravel, or grey limestone.

The right gravel material

You can find many popular material choices for gravel driveways, from granite to basalt, limestone, and flint. The colour and finish you desire to achieve can influence your choice of gravel material. Here listed are different types of gravels for your driveway:

  • Crushed stone: The crushed stone combined with rock, glass aggregate, and dust can handle moderate traffic from heavy vehicles.
  • Pea gravel: It’s a popular gravel type to enhance the aesthetics of your driveway. Pea gravel is made up of round, small stones that are available in many colours. Although this gravel type can easily migrate and spread under the weight of automobiles, you need to stabilise it for long-term, maintenance-free usage.
  • Quarry process: Also known as crusher run, the quarry process works well for driveways and walkways. This type of gravel is made of crushed stone and dust fines. The stone dust settles and becomes compact to create a smooth, semi solid surface. You should slop this type of surface gravel towards the sides of your driveway for seamless drainage.
  • Jersey Shore gravel: Made of yellow, gold, white, and brownstones, Jersey Shore gravel looks a bit like sandstone paving. This gravel type is similar to pea gravel as it needs borders or stabilising pavers to prevent gravel from spreading.
  • Marble chips: They are white in colour and sparkle in the sunlight. Marble chips can cost more than other types of gravel but are another favourite of homeowners to enhance their driveway’s aesthetic appeal. This gravel type also needs stabilisation or border to prevent gravel from migrating, spreading, or washing away.
  • Black Trap rock: A very attractive dark grey gravel, black trap rock is an excellent choice because it’s angular and locks together. Combining it with a stabilising grid paving system can provide you with a super durable and beautiful driveway.

The right gravel colour

The colour choice for gravel can depend on the style and surroundings of your home. Fortunately, gravels for driveways are available in a kaleidoscope of colours.

Golden and cream-coloured aggregates, like golden gravel, can make an impressive contrast against brickwork, creating a stunning look. If you want a lighter, brighter touch, white marble can be a perfect choice for a modern design. Moreover, it can highlight the plants and trees surrounding your house more beautifully.

Alternatively, you can opt for green granite gravel to create an elegant, eye-catching gravel driveway that blends in subtly with grey and beige brickwork.

To sum up it all!

Many homeowners think of gravel driveways as low-cost, budget-friendly options, but choosing the best gravel for driveways can also create something stylish for their outdoor space. Now, you can find many varieties of gravel that are not only durable but also functional and decorative. For instance, combining gravel with coloured glass aggregate can create a beautiful, well-functioning, and durable driveway. Some gravel types can still have some vulnerabilities. However, considering the above-discussed factors can help you choose the best gravel for your driveway.

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