How Gravel Driveways are Built

By Yvonne

March 21, 2017 Home Improvement No comments

Are you interested in building a new gravel driveway? If you are, this article will help you to get organized. Today, we’re going to talk about how to build one in a smart, efficient and cost-effective manner. While you are free to outsource the task to driveway construction contractors, some people do opt to do it themselves.

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Once you’ve read our detailed and factual guide, you’ll have a better sense of what’s involved and you’ll be primed to get everything organized, from accessing supplies to putting the right weed protection features for your new driveway into place…and beyond.

To start things off, we’d like to share a few of the key benefits of gravel driveways.

Benefits of Gravel Driveways

Gravel driveways are long-lasting options. in fact, they are proven to last longer than driveways which are paved. As well, they are eco-friendly when compared to paved driveways. In addition, when you choose a gravel driveway, you’ll find that snow and rain absorb into the earth under the gravel, rather than accumulating on the surface and triggering run-off. This is great if you want to decrease the risk of flooding issues.

Also, a gravel driveway will help to keep your auto away from mud. In addition, it’s a good separator between a parking area and a yard.

Placement

You’ll need to figure out where your new gravel driveway is going to go. This means thinking about its shape and size, too. It’s vital to know which shape and size you want and exactly where the placement will be. Whether you want a typical paved driveway or something fancier, such as a circular design, you’ll find that making decisions about placement, as well as shape and size, is the key to devising a budget and avoiding problems.

Next, you should decide whether you’re going to build the thing yourself or pay a local contractor to build it. If you’re going to outsource, shop around carefully. Read reviews of contractors, collect quotes, check credentials…the more homework and research, the better…
If you want to take care of everything on your own, the next step is deciding whether or not you want a border for the driveway. It’s really a matter of personal preference. Wood or bricks are typical borders for these driveways. After you do this, you’ll be ready to gather materials. You’ll need some supplies and costing these supplies before you buy them will be easier when you know the dimensions of the driveway.
This is why you should measure the intended space carefully before costing items and buying them.

Which Materials Will You Need?

Obviously, you’re going to need gravel. It’s best to lay down a layer of gravel which is three to five inches thick. It will deter weeds. We also greatly recommend buying enough plastic paving grids to lay down underneath the gravel. These grids reinforce driveways and this improves the weight capacity of driveways. As well, plastic paving grids are great ways to deter weeds. Weeds popping up through gravel stones can be very annoying.
If you don’t put in a weed protection system, such as plastic paving grids or a plastic sheet, before you lay down your gravel, you may find that weeding becomes an annoying and regular task.
You’ll also need materials for the border, if you’re making one, and enough tools to get things done, including a wheelbarrow, a shovel and a rake.
Shop around to get the best deal on gravel, as it’s the biggest expense. If you’re buying plastic sheeting or plastic paving grids for your underlayer, shop around for high-quality examples from trust companies.

Now It’s Time to Build

First, you’ll need to level the bare earth and remove grass. You should get rid of topsoil, too. Get rid of three to five inches for every layer of gravel that you put down. Once the ground is prepared, add your border. Then, it will be time to add your underlayer. Once the underlayer is in place, it will be time to move forward and lay down the gravel. It should be raked smooth for an even finish.
Some people use large machines in order to get the job done faster. Others spend a bit more time working with smaller machines and basic tools. Just do what it convenient for you.
Precise measurements for the space are really important. If you’re doing it yourself, ask a friend to check your work. Then, sit down and map out a budget. Taking the time to find quality materials for great prices will really pay off. It’s all about comparison-shopping in order to get a great deal on everything that you need.
If you run into problems, you should know that it’s never too late to call a contractor. A contractor will be able to fix things.

Author Bio

About Fergus @MatsGrids
MatsGrids are suppliers of Ground reinforcement systems, grass reinforcement and protection mesh for domestic and commercial landscaping projects. Our business mission is to become the UK’s leading supplier of ground works, civils and landscaping products. Over the last few years, our company has grown to become one of the UK’s most reputable suppliers to these sectors and today we supply our range of products to thousands of businesses and end users within the UK and overseas.

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