You've finally made it out of the rat race and purchase the perfect property for building your dream home. One of the first things you might want to do is to pave the driveway, so that you'll be able to easily drive your vehicle into the garage. While there are many different materials that you can choose from, asphalt has been a favorite amongst homeowners, as it is cost-efficient and can last up to 15 to 20 years. If you've decided on using asphalt, you can help your contractor out by preparing the driveway ahead of time by doing these 3 things.
Remove Any Top-Soil, Roots or Vegetation In the Designated Area
Once you have decided where the asphalt will be paved, it's important that you clear the area and put up markers that clearly define where the boundaries will be. Remove any top-soil, roots or vegetation that is within this area to create a clean slate where the asphalt can be paved.
You can remove the top-soil and most of the vegetation with a shovel; however, if you notice any roots in the ground, you should consider manually removing the roots by hand. Make sure you get all of the roots out. If you don't, the roots may continue to grow under the asphalt and may even eventually break through the asphalt causing it to collapse or crumble. If you're going to grow flowers or plants beside the driveway, consult with a contractor regarding whether the roots of the plants will eventually affect the asphalt.
Fill the Area with Sand and Gravel
Your asphalt contractor will want to inspect the quality of the sub-grade soil to determine whether it will be able to support the asphalt. Soils that are high in clay or shale content tend to be rather unstable. They will buckle and shift underneath the asphalt overtime and cause it to collapse.
If the sub-grade is high in clay or shale content, you'll want to lay out a base of granular unbound materials overtop the area where the asphalt will be paved. Crushed stones, crushed and uncrushed gravel and sand are all suitable. You can easily buy bags of these aggregates from a home improvement store nearby.
Compact the Driveway Area
Once an appropriate base has been laid out, you'll want to further stabilize the foundation where the asphalt will be paved by compacting the soil. As driveways tend to be relatively small, you won't need to use a roller attached to a bobcat to do the job. You can rent soil compaction equipment, like rammers or vibrating plate compactors, and get the job done yourself.
Even after you have prepared the area, you should still get an asphalt contractor to do a thorough inspection. It's imperative that the foundation where the asphalt will be paved is secure and stable in order to ensure that the asphalt will last. You can click here for more info on asphalt paving.