It’s driveway time again and if you have a long one, it’s a constant headache in most cases.
No matter what the current situation is, a long rural driveway must be in good repair.
Small driveways found in urban areas or those close to the road with walkways are of no real concern. Service, delivery or first responders can access the front door in just steps. There are many reputable, hot asphalt, concrete and interlock companies available locally for these.
But long, rural driveways, 20 to hundreds of metres long, need to be safe enough for vehicles to travel over.
Ruts, potholes, washouts and soft areas are a few of the hazards that would best be attended to. The longer they’re left, the more they erode.
What are the options? Gravel seems to be the most popular, but it needs to be replaced every few years, causes dust and ends up everywhere.
Stone screenings, a little more expensive, cause more dust than gravel but pack up a little and last a couple years longer than gravel.
Then there’s Recycled Asphalt Product (RAP). It’s been used on the South Island for driveways for 16 years. It’s used by road crews for temporary surfaces during road work and has other uses for waterproofing.
As a long rural driveway surface, there’ nothing better. RAP does not pothole, rut or wash out.
There’s no dust and water runs over it to where it is graded to.
RAP is as green as it gets. This is a recycled product that is inert. Properly placed at 3.5 inches, then levelled, crowned or angled on a percentage and compacted, it will last indefinitely.
What you’ll have is gravel, compacted with tars and bitumen. This will bind the gravel. Over time, weather and usage, the RAP will oxidize.
This will cause just the surface to turn to the natural colour of the stone, giving the appearance of a country driveway, but underneath, the compacted RAP is still 2 1/2 inches thick. RAP is malleable and will move with the ground. There’s no cracking or heaving and it can take heavy loads.
Maybe if a long, rut-filled, pothole-ladened, dusty or muddy, axel-wrenching, ball joint-popping, steering wheel-whipping, coffee-spilling driveway greets you or your visitors, Recycled Asphalt may be of interest.
To learn more, contact Robert Henry at