Driveways are built to withstand the wear and tear of car tires and the weight of trucks and SUVs, but exposure to weather extremes of cold, heat and sunlight can cause driveways to expand, contract and eventually erode. Cracks and pitting can form, and over time a driveway may end up needing repair. The cost of resurfacing a driveway can vary, but most experts agree the cost of resurfacing is far lower than replacing a driveway altogether.
Resurfacing an asphalt driveway is a simple and cost-effective project for a homeowner. Asphalt resurfacing products can be found at most large home improvement stores and are suitable for worn driveway pavement with surface cracking. A five-gallon bucket will generally cover about 300 square feet and runs around $30 in price per bucket. Application tools such as a brush or a squeegee will cost around $10.
Concrete resurfacing mixtures are also available for concrete driveways. A five-gallon bucket will cost about $20 and can provide coverage for about 300 square feet. Concrete resurfacing products come premixed or in dry form that will be prepared by mixing with water and stirring to the right consistency. Tools for application will run $10 to $20 for a concrete trowel or driveway squeegee.
Gravel driveways are the easiest type of driveway to resurface but may also require the most maintenance. A bag of gravel will cost about $5 per bag and covers about two cubic feet. Gravel requires no specialized tools to apply. A homeowner simply fills in uneven areas and levels out the driveway with a rake or by hand.
The cost of hiring a professional resurfacer can vary significantly depending on the contractor. Most professionals will quote between $2 to $4 per square foot to resurface an asphalt or concrete driveway that shows minor to moderate surface cracks and wear. Although the resurfacing material and the procedure are similar to the do-it-yourself versions, professionals bring a higher level of expertise to get the job done for lasting results. Professionals also have access to specialized equipment to get the job done faster.
Some driveways suffer damage beyond wear and surface cracks. Rather than replacing an entire driveway, some homeowners opt to repair the damaged areas by hiring a professional to do major resurfacing work. Equipment may be brought in to cut out damaged layers and pour new pavement. Major resurfacing work can range from $5,000 to $50,000, depending on the scope of damage and the size of the driveway.