How Driveways Affect Foundations
Your driveway is a very important part of your home’s exterior. It provides a way for your car to get from one place to another, while also providing access to your garage. However, it can have an impact on your foundation in a number of ways, making it essential to keep an eye on it.
A good driveway can make your property look great, but if it’s not properly designed and built, it could negatively affect the foundation of your home. Luckily, there are a few things you can do to help ensure your driveway stays strong and beautiful for years to come.
Start With the Right Materials
There are many different types of driveway materials, each with its own pros and cons. For example, gravel is one of the cheapest and easiest driveway options to install, but it does require more maintenance than asphalt or concrete. Moreover, it can be difficult to repair cracks in gravel as it can easily be damaged by water.
Other popular choices are pavers and asphalt. They both offer a variety of benefits and can be customized to suit your needs and budget.
The best thing to do is to talk with a professional who can advise you on what would be the best type of material for your home. This will help you avoid potential problems down the line.
Choosing the Correct Base Material
The base material you choose will depend on the soil conditions in your area. For instance, coarse gravel with a jagged surface is ideal because it will compact and lock together easily. It also drains water well, which will prevent ice from forming and cracking the asphalt.
This step is important because it will determine how much support and stability you can expect from your new driveway. If you don’t have enough support, the driveway might start to sink and break up.
Clearing the Land
Before you can begin digging for the foundation of your driveway, you need to prepare the surface. This means removing any plants and ensuring that the ground is clear. Usually, this will involve using heavy machinery.
Once the surface has been cleared, it is time to grade and level the land. This is a process that requires the use of a grader and a truck to mark and dig out soft areas.
Ideally, this should be done until a layer of rock or hard earth is reached. Failure to do so will result in the foundation being built on soft ground, which will not provide a stable surface and may lead to a variety of issues down the line.
If you do find a spot that’s too soft, it should be removed and replaced with a crushed stone or asphalt filler. The ground should be graded until it is level and does not change more than a half-inch over a ten-foot span.
Next, you’ll need to build a form to hold the new footing in place. This can be accomplished by pouring rip-rap blocks or by building a separate kneewall against the exposed soils.