Building a driveway can cost quite a bit of money; as such, it is sensible to make sure that you and your chosen contractor do not make any mistakes which could reduce the lifespan of the structure or make it harder to maintain. Here are two examples of errors that could cause these types of problems.
Using an inadequate sub-base
The sub-base is the material that lies directly underneath a driveway's surface material. Its primary purpose is to provide structural support so that the weight of heavy vehicles does not cause the paving material to develop cracks or sink into the ground. In order to perform this function and ensure solid driveway construction, the soil that makes up this sub-base must be tightly and uniformly compacted.
Certain soil types are much more difficult to compact than others; soil that is made up of clay and sand, for example, is not suitable as a sub-base for a driveway, as clay has a tendency to expand when wet and contract when dry, whilst sand is often too soft to create a high level of compaction.
If you do not factor in the composition of the soil before beginning the driveway construction process and you happen to live in an area that features the above-mentioned soil types, the condition of your new driveway will quickly deteriorate when you start to use it.
As such, remember the importance of establishing a structurally stable sub-base and talk with your contractor to ensure that they make adjustments to it if necessary. They might, for example, need to remove some of the soil and replace it with a more appropriate material (such as gravel, limestone or chalk).
Failing to consider the amount of maintenance that a particular style of driveway will require
If you care about the appearance of your home but do not want to spend an excessive amount of time on maintenance, it's important to keep this in mind when selecting your driveway design, as certain styles require more upkeep than others.
For example, if you choose to install a driveway which features intricately-patterned paving slabs instead of plain poured concrete or asphalt, you will almost certainly end up spending a substantial amount of time removing dirt, algae and moss from the grooves of these stones and plucking weeds from the gaps between the slabs.
If you are not prepared to do this type of work, it would be best to ask your contractor to use a simpler design, one that does not feature any spaces in which weeds, dirt and other debris may accumulate.