Rust And Mud: Replace Your Dirt Driveway And Protect Your Car

Posted on: 17 January 2017

If you own a home in a rural part of the country, then you might have a dirt driveway. These driveways are a problem not only because they are messy, and hard to plow when the snow comes, but they can also cause long-term damage to your car. Every time it rains, your car is going to be splashed with mud. That not only looks ugly, and will require you to get frequent car washes, but it can cake up on the undercarriage and lead to rust. Even if there are no big, muddy pools of water that you drive through and splash the car, the dirt driveway will be moist, and this moist ground will contribute to rust on the car. So, here are two alternatives to consider.

Gravel Driveway With A Sand Base

If you want to keep the property rustic looking, then you can bring in a truckload of gravel and spread it around with a rake. However, you have to prep the driveway first. The first thing you will need to do is outline the area you are going to place the gravel on. Rake it clean of any debris. Then place plastic edging around the perimeter of the space. Next, empty several bags of sand. This will help keep the weeds down and also be a good base for the gravel. Next, use a shovel and place the gravel onto the sand, and then spread it out evenly with rake. Finally, you should tamp it down.

Weeds will come up occasionally, so you can use a chemical weed killer. Don't consider using a plastic weed barrier, since this will prevent the water from draining through the gravel and sand.

Asphalt Driveway

If you're not too concerned about maintaining a "rustic" look to the property, then the best solution is an asphalt driveway. They are super easy to plow come snow season. Gravel, on the other hand, is a nightmare to snowplow (little bits of gravel can get sucked up by the machine and cause damage to the blades). Not only that, but an asphalt driveway provides a much better insulation from ground moisture.

Unlike a gravel drive, you should not consider installing an asphalt drive yourself. You need a professional contractor to come in and lay the new asphalt drive. They know how to slope the drive ever so slightly so that water does not pool in the center. This eliminates any chance of standing water under your car after a big rain. A properly sloped drive will allow for the rainwater to flow off to the sides.