Q:

How much does a new asphalt driveway cost?

A:

Quick Answer

The cost of a new asphalt driveway depends on the size of the driveway, but on average costs $3 to $4 per square foot. Nationally, most homeowners spend between $3,447 and $4,919 on a new asphalt driveway, as of 2014.

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Full Answer

Only a local contractor can give you the exact cost of a new asphalt driveway. Prices vary by geographical location and are subject to change year to year, based on the cost of raw materials, government regulations, demand and labor charges. Asphalt cost is based on a "per ton" basis. Added to this is the cost of crew and machinery used, in addition to other miscellaneous costs. The depth of the asphalt and quality of the preparation also factor into the final cost of the driveway.

A reputable contractor digs a base of 4 to 6 inches for a new driveway, adds driveway gravel, grades the surface properly, and lays 3 to 4 inches of base asphalt, followed by another 1 to 2 inches of topcoat asphalt. Some unscrupulous contractors try to undercut the competition by quoting lower prices and then skimping on the preparation and using less asphalt, resulting in a driveway that soon cracks and falls apart. A well-constructed and maintained asphalt driveway lasts for 20 years or more.

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    Do I need to seal my asphalt driveway?

    A:

    Although not absolutely essential, sealing an asphalt driveway extends its overall life and minimizes the need for repairs. Sealer fills small cracks to reduce damage from water, ice and growing plants. It also protects against ultraviolet radiation from the sun, as well as oil and gas spills.

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    How often does an asphalt driveway need to be sealed?

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    Seal an asphalt driveway once every two to three years; sealing the driveway more often may lead to hairline cracks and peeling. When sealed properly, an asphalt driveway has a fresh, black finish and is better protected from oil damage and cracks.

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    How do you price an asphalt driveway?

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