Asphalt on paths and driveways - are there alternatives?

Asphalting has its advantages. Whether there are also viable alternatives for asphalting, and where the advantages and disadvantages of alternative methods lie in detail, you can read in our article.

Roadway or driveway

Of course, you first have to decide whether it is just a short driveway or possibly a longer driveway. In both cases, it is a different situation, and one most likely to have different requirements.

Advantages of asphalt

Asphalt plays its strengths in many ways:

  • especially on larger surfaces, it is light and, above all, fast to install As asphalt is quite cost-effective due to the fast installation, only small areas are often not worthwhile
  • paving long distances can be extremely expensive
  • In-situ concrete still has joints that are difficult to keep clean
  • Asphalt is almost maintenance-free for 20 to 30 years if it has been installed properly and then requires little refurbishment
  • Prices of asphalt

The prices are a bit more complicated. In most cases, you will need a base layer and a top layer, with the top layer being twice as expensive as the base layer. The asphalt consumption is around 25 kg / m² for most requirements.

If one calculates with EUR 30 per tonne for the base course and EUR 60 per ton for the top layer, this results in square meter prices of around EUR 15 per m². The cost of installation will then be added, as well as the transport costs.

However, this can be worthwhile, especially for longer distances, because the costs are then significantly reduced by the size of the area.


Gravel and grit are a possible alternative - however, keeping the snow clean and clearing snow on such surfaces in winter is a burden. For sufficient drainage no derivation of the resulting rainwater is necessary - which in turn saves expenses.

Concrete coverings are quite resistant, but also have joints in which dirt can accumulate. The installation effort can be consistently higher for in-situ concrete, but you can not always do it yourself with perfect results.

The same applies to paving - paving also requires a bit of skill and experience, as well as the material costs are at a similar level as asphalt to significantly higher - depending on which paving you choose. Keeping clean and snow clearing is also problematic here and usually associated with great effort and a lot of effort.

Ecological asphalt

Bitumen hardly appears replaceable in asphalt - but that is deceptive. The disadvantages of the oil-derived product can be avoided. The latest scientific development is a combination of used food and frying oils and fly ash (a copious waste product from coal-fired power plants that are still running in many places).

If the waste oil is heated together with the fly ash, a binder is produced which has properties very similar to those of bitumen. First tests were promising, the material is actually as strong as a classic asphalt pavement. It is not used regularly, but that could change quickly after a successful long-term test.

Tips & TricksThe perfect alternative to the asphalt does not exist. You always have to balance the pros and cons of the individual rubbers and see what you value the most. That's an individual decision.

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