Asphalt Residential Driveway Paving

Hello:
What's a good rule of thumb for the thickness of Asphalt that one should request from a paving contractor for a "typical" home driveway ?
How about for the gravel bed underneath the Asphalt ?
BTW: is it considered good practice to (always) remove the old gravel, or can new Asphalt be simply laid on top of the existing gravel once the old Asphalt is removed ?
(is it even possible to remove the old Asphalt without taking all of the gravel bed with it ?)
Thanks, B.
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wrote:

What street do you live on or even what state?
Folks here can help you. They have a _need to know_.

-- Oren
"The voices in my head may not be real, but they have some good ideas!"
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Hello,
Live in Mass., outside of Boston.
Thanks for help.
B. -----------------------

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Hello,
Live in Mass., outside of Boston.
Thanks for help.
B. -----------------------

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Hello,
Live in Mass., outside of Boston.
Thanks for help.
B. -----------------------

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Hi,
Live in Mass., outside of Boston.
Thanks for help, B.
--------------

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ideally dig down and remove old asphalt and old gravel bed, normally dig down about a foot.
then rough gravel, choke gravel, rolled repeatedly, 2 inches of rough asphalt that supplies the strength which is the rocks in the asphalt then about a inch of topcoat.
around here people try just laying some ashalt over the old stuff. whatever bad areas, cracks, heaves etc will just reappear.fast.
another scam is laying 3 inches of base and a inch of smooth directly on dirt.
some neighbors did that it was low cost they are trimming the trees and bushes coming up in the middle of their driveways.and if it freezes instant cracks.
the gravel base is for drainage under the asphalt, without that drainage driveways just dont last.
if you have a old driveway thats looking bad they can selectively patch the bad areas then spray asphalt over the entire area and cover with chips.
tar and chips can help improve the appearance and stabilize a failing surface.........
if you do it right and seal regurally a asphalt driveway will last a lifetime.
one by the house where i grew up is over 50 years old and looked good till recently, the owner is elderly and unable to maintain it properly.
my driveway was put in about 1985 and needs coated this year but has held up well.
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snipped-for-privacy@aol.com writes:

Asphalt concrete ages and embrittles much faster than a "lifetime".
So-called sealing is many times more expensive than new asphalt per pound applied. It is not a cost-effective way to extend life, since at best it treats only the surface.
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Well because of a sewer issue, the line qwill ultimately need replaced, so I priced a new driveway.
about 3 grand and it was $1300 new in 1985.
now lets imagine replacement in what 20 years?
3000 bucks will buy a LOT of sealer, and besides it looks so good every time its done:)
Obviously you dont want to bother sealing and thats fine its your money to waste
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snipped-for-privacy@aol.com writes:

Please. Hot-mix asphalt concrete is about $80/ton. Your "sealer" is just a water emulsion of asphalt cement with sand, and horrifically more expensive than hot-mix. The labor costs per unit weight applied are even worse for "sealer", since you're painting it on in thousandths of an inch versus dumping multiple inches out of a truck.
If "sealer" was cost-effective, somebody besides sucker homeowners would be buying it. You don't see the DOT putting it on roads, because they have engineers who know better.

The only genuine value is the looks. Businesses want to paint their parking lots so they aren't all spotted with grease stains. Homeowners want that (phony) fresh look.
If you wanted durable good looks, you would have paid for portland cement concrete instead of asphalt concrete.
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laying a new coat of asphalt over a old base is wsate of money

coating makes surface slippery, no good for roads doesnt matter on driveways.......

concrete stains too easy, oily patches on concrete are really unsightly.........
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How does the cost of concrete vs asphalt compare? I'm contemplating doing a 400' drive that includes about 200' of 15-20 degree hill. So there is a durability issue in addition to cost issue. Any recommendations?
Red
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Red writes:

Portland cement concrete costs more per sq ft than asphaltic concrete. (Yes, they're both properly called concrete.) The former lasts forever, the latter maybe 20 years depending on climate. Both are easily misapplied, which makes them short-lived or otherwise flawed.
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I've seen sealer sprayed on residential streets in the area. It was a thinner stuff, then covered with a layer of sand, then swept after a day or two.
It may not last, and makes a mess out of the cars on it, but municipalities are on budgets as well.
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to get it right,get the old asphalt and gravel up. level and put a good bed of gravel and 2 or 4 inches of asphalt down. the best paving mahines continually mix the asphalt in the hopper , this keeps you from getting a rocky surface. i wont use a company unless they have the mixing hopper.lucas
http://www.minibite.com/america/malone.htm
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