A beautiful concrete paver driveway.

Paver Driveways

Everything To Know About Paver Driveways
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The Pros And Cons Of Paver Driveways

Thoughts to ponder when considering paver driveways.

  • What are the benefits of paver driveways versus concrete or asphalt driveways?
  • Which driveway surface has the longest lifespan?
  • Which driveway surface is best when choosing between paver driveways versus concrete or asphalt driveways?
  • What type of ongoing maintenance do paver driveways require compared to concrete or asphalt driveways?
A curved paver driveway next to lawn.

Considering A New Paver Driveway?

Are Pavers The Best Choice For Driveways?

Concrete pavers, brick pavers, stone pavers, permeable pavers and interlocking pavers. While the names are very similar, they are all slightly different. 

Concrete pavers are made with concrete, formed and molded into different shapes and then dried in controlled climate settings. They come in many different colors and styles.

Brick pavers are baked at extremely high temperatures in a controlled climate setting as well and can be pricier than that of concrete pavers. They also come in varying colors such as red, brown, and burnt orange.  

Stone pavers are made of natural stone such as granite, limestone, or sandstone. They're very durable and add a natural, rustic look to a driveway.

Interlocking pavers can be either one of the three previously mentioned, and is described as the placement of the pavers, whichever type is chosen. A paver driveway creates a durable solid surface that mainly sheds water off of the surface.

Permeable paver driveways are still very similar, but are designed and installed to be permeable. In other words, constructed in such a way that water permeates through to the subgrade beneath allowing for much less water runoff. 

Permeable paver driveways are much more environmentally friendly allowing less pollutants winding up into our rivers, creeks, streams and lakes.
A concrete paver driveway looking at the garage from the street.

How common are paver driveways?

Paver driveways can be found just about anywhere in the country.

The further south we travel in the United States, the more likely we see concrete driveways and paver driveways while the further north we travel in the United States, the more likely we see asphalt driveways.

This is due to the amount of freeze and thaw cycles that occur in the colder regions and the minimal freeze and thaw cycles we see in the warmer regions.

A paver driveway with a light snow in them.

How well do paver driveways hold up in snowy regions?

Paver driveways can perform very well in cold, snowy regions IF they are installed properly. An improperly installed paver driveway in a cold snowy region with a lot of freeze and thaw cycles MUST be installed properly. 

Paver driveways can be somewhat pliable since they are relatively small in size, allowing for movement from freeze and thaw cycles. Therefore, cracking rarely happens. However, minor heaving can become an issue since it’s much easier for water to reach the sub-grade and freeze and thaw beneath individual pavers, therefore displacing them causing an uneven surface. 

Keep in mind also, if you live in a snowy region, shoveling paver driveways can be a chore as there are many edges to catch the shovel edge on. The same can be said for plowing paver driveways. 

Paver driveways are extremely durable and can withstand de-icing products like salt, magnesium chloride and other de-icing chemicals.

How well do paver driveways hold up in hot regions?

Paver driveways hold up very well in warmer and hot regions. 

There are of course, some things to consider. 

Depending on the soil where you live, making sure that the soil/subgrade around and beneath the pavers doesn't dry too much can be very important. 

Some professionals even going as far as recommending adding soaker hoses 18" along the border of your paver driveway to protect the integrity of the interlocking pavers. Keeping the soil moist may be needed as the contraction of the soil can cause the pavers to heave and move. 

A local paver contractor or manufacturer, home inspector, city inspector or engineer will know if this is a concern in your area. 

To be certain, hiring a local soils engineer is always the best bet. 

A concrete paver driveway on a hot day in the south.
Red concrete pavers being installed on a driveway.

How long does it take to install a new paver driveway?

Depending on the size and scope of work involved, the construction of a new paver driveway can be installed by an experienced paver installation contractor generally over a 5 to 7 day period after the sub-grade preparation has been completed.

Even more time may be required in areas where the soil needs to be excavated and allowed to settle before installing the pavers.

Paver driveway installation is very labor intensive since the pavers are each installed by hand.

Once the pavers have been laid, sand is then swept into the seams to help keep the pavers locked in place.

Once a paver driveway has been installed, they can be driven on immediately!

Paver Driveways Compared To Other Driveway Types

Of the four types of driveways, paver driveways rank at #1 when comparing the cost of installation and at #4 when comparing the ongoing maintenance of a driveway.

Cost Analysis Comparison

  • Paver Driveways - #1 - Most Expensive To Install
  • Concrete Driveways - #2
  • Asphalt Driveways - #3
  • Gravel Driveways - #4 - Least Expensive To Install

Paver driveways are the most expensive driveway when comparing it to other hard surfaces.

Ongoing Maintenance

  • Gravel Driveways - #1 - Most Most Ongoing Maintenance
  • Asphalt Driveways - #2
  • Concrete Driveways - #3
  • Paver Driveways - #4 - Least Ongoing Maintenance

Paver driveways require the least amount of ongoing maintenance, compared to the other hard surface driveways.

Life Expectancy Of A Paver Driveway

This is where the benefits of the upfront costs of a paver driveway become readily apparent.

A properly installed paver driveway with regularly scheduled maintenance can last up to 30, 35 or even 40 years and longer! That variation in age can be determined by the stability of the sub-grade, the quality of the installation, the type and frequency of maintenance, and the climate you live in.

Types of ongoing maintenance you can expect to perform on paver driveways?

  • Sweeping Sand

    Sweeping sand in between the joints of a concrete paver driveway.
  • Powerwashing & Sealing*

    Powerwashing concrete pavers.
  • Treating Oil Spots

    Oil spots on concrete pavers.
  • Weed Control

    A weed growing in between concrete pavers.
  • Edging

    The edge of a concrete paver driveway next to the grass.

Keep in mind that with a paver driveway, when comparing the upfront costs to an asphalt or concrete driveway, you're essentially paying for the ongoing maintenance up front.

Paver driveways require such little ongoing maintenance, that when comparing the up front costs to an asphalt or concrete driveway, essentially what you’re doing is trading the long term ongoing maintenance costs over the lifetime of an asphalt, concrete or even gravel driveways for little to no maintenance.

Some paver installation contractors even offer a lifetime warranty! But keep in mind that a company’s warranty is only as good as the contractor that’s installing it. What good is a lifetime warranty if the contractor who installed it isn’t around to make good on it?

*Most paver manufacturers do not recommend sealing pavers. Once a paver driveway has been sealed, it will always need to be sealed on a regular basis to keep it looking presentable. 

Also take into consideration the effects on paver driveways if they're not maintained properly and how they can look as they age.

An aging paver driveway.
An aging paver driveway that has not been maintained well.

As you can see, not maintaining a paver driveway at all leads to weeds growing in the cracks and overgrowing the edges, heaving and unevenness.

If you already own a paver driveway and it’s beginning to show the signs of aging and deterioration, has a tremendous amount of weeds, heaving issues, removing and replacing the driveway and starting from scratch may be the only option.

This absolutely should be performed by a reputable paver company that will do it right the first time. If the existing paver driveway shows signs of unstable sub-grade, the soil should be excavated and new base or structural material installed and then the new paver driveway installed for a solid, long lasting driveway.

Choosing The Right Driveway For Your Home

When choosing between paver driveways and the other three types of driveways, consider these questions:


ARE Paver Driveways Compliant with your HOA OR Municipality?

Be sure and check with your HOA (if you have one) or your local government municipality to make sure paver driveways are acceptable in the area you live. Some HOA's, municipalities or developments do not allow paver driveways.


Will A Paver Driveway Look Good In The Neighborhood You Live In?

Will a paver driveway look good in front of your home? Maybe a different type of driveway will look better. Have you explored your options?

An aerial view of a neighborhood with concrete paver driveways.
Shoveling snow on a paver driveway.


What is the climate like in your region of the country? Is it cold and snowy? Rainy and wet? Hot and dry? Be sure and select a driveway type that make sense for your region. Paver driveways are great for warmer and hot climates. Paver driveways can be equally durable in cold, snowy climates provided they are installed properly.



If you want your driveway to last a lifetime, regular maintenance plays an important role in how long your paver driveway will last. 



How much and what kind of traffic do you expect to use your driveway? Normal, everyday passenger vehicle use or heavy vehicle use? Select a Driveway that make sense. Any type of driveway must be designed and built properly for heavy vehicles like trash trucks, propane delivery trucks and septic cleanout trucks. 



Select a driveway that fits into your budget short term and long term. Would a higher maintenance driveway like concrete or asphalt fit in your short term budget better? It's a trade off for more ongoing maintenance, but less up front costs. 

A propane truck on a paver driveway.

Summary Of Paver Driveways

Paver driveways can be a beautiful addition to your home. The wide variety of different colors, patterns and paver types to choose from can give your driveway a unique, one of a kind look. See some different Paver Driveway Designs

If you’re considering having a new paver driveway installed, see our Paver Driveway Installation FAQ’s section for more information.

You can also learn more about the ongoing maintenance of paver driveways by visiting our Paver Driveway Maintenance FAQ’s section for more information.

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