Patterned concrete driveways (and why you don’t really see them in the country)
Without a doubt patterned concrete driveways are very popular as both a driveway and patio paving product. This is understandable. The range of colours from subtle blends of red, to garish champagne pink and sunshine yellow make them either stand out; or blend in.
Combine this with a range of patterns that really do look like ‘real’ thing such as stone, cobble, and slate and you have a winning combination.
Buy why don’t you really see patterned concrete driveways in the country?
Of course, there have been some patterned imprinted concrete installations in country areas; surrounds for pools, barn offices and patios. But you’ll be hard pushed to find a large country pile in ‘the sticks’ that isn’t covered with gravel.
Laying patterned imprinted concrete over areas of more than 300m2 is rare and will take a number of days. Besides the high cost (minimum £16,000 without extras and up to £40,000 if paying top price to a sales company) it will also be difficult to get the same ‘batches’ of concrete. This will mess up the final look as joins will show through and matching colour will be difficult. So, gravel is for country….concrete for city surrounds and towns.
Why you see plenty of patterned concrete driveways around cities and towns
At the cheap and shoddy end of the pattern imprinted concrete driveway installations you have the lazy and incompetent. They are the guys that do not lay a proper sub base, neglect drainage (and use cheap products), scrimp on concrete reinforcing as well as colour and sealer. If you’re really unlucky and go for a really ‘cheap’ cowboy you’ll get what you deserve – an installation that that you’d have been better off doing yourself!
If you see patterned imprinted concrete driveways with large cracks; it’s probably because a poor sub base was laid. If you see pattern concrete driveway that looks patchy with no colour; it’s because not enough colour was applied. If you see colours that look too bright; it’s because cost savings were made on not applying enough ‘release agent’. Puddling and poor drainage will be due to poor workmanship and lack of experience.
Patterned concrete driveways in cities and towns can offer low (er) costs as a decent, hard wearing, stable and visually pleasing paving product. Using professionals that have an extensive portfolio of jobs going back at least 7 years may mean you get a value enhancing driveway – you deserve.
Let us know your experience – good or bad!
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