Difference between asphalt and bitumen?

Folks
My neighbour is getting quotes for surfacing his driveway. He's getting contractors offering him either a bitumen surface or an asphalt one for about 50% extra cost (may have that the wrong way round).
He's asked me and I've no idea what the difference between the two is and I've no idea. From some brief searches it seems a bit confusing i.e. bitumen is used to make asphalt?
Can anyone advise on the difference and would you recommend it? The two prices are about £1,500 vs £2,300 or thereabouts?
thanks
tommy
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wrote:

Hi,
See:
<http://www.pavingexpert.com/
cheers, Pete.
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Bitumen is a component used in the manufacture of asphalt, its normally a liquid that is mixed with fillers and aggregate to produce a finished material. By a bitumen surface they are probably referring to a spray system where the bitumen is applied to the surface either with an aggregate in it or the aggregate can be sprinkled on whilst the bitumen is still wet, if you use pea shingle you get a nice gravel effect drive that stays in one place. By an asphalt surface you are looking at the traditional finish that we all love (or hate). Something to consider is the longevity of the spray applied system, it wont last as long as the asphalt, how long this is will depend on the amount of traffic
--
David

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    I believe that a bitumen surface is applying a mix of small gravel and bitumen, an asphalt surface is bitumen mixed with a wide range of particle sizes( like a concrete mix). Asphalt is ideally applied as a much thicker layer, with a much heavier roller as it is a less flexible mix, but takes greater loadings. IME, both are poor surfaces compared with concrete. Asphalt in particular suffers from surface "heave" if the subsoil/base is not stable.
    Regards     Capitol
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snipped-for-privacy@spamfree.freeserve.co.uk says...

??
Haven't seen them building concrete roads in years. They were usually an un-mitigated disaster.

Concrete will crack in similar circumstances. Once it cracks and rain gets in, followed by frost, its well on its way to Valhalla.
I think they are both ugly but the alternative of gravel drove me nuts.
Some years back we replaced gravel (P.I.A.) with what I think the installer caled tarmacadam. He gave me the impression asphalt was very heavy duty applications,and mostly suitable for roads, bit of an over kill for drives.
Bitumen to him was something cowboys specialised in.
Whatever he used for us it is standing up beautifully.
--
Paul Mc Cann

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Paul Mc Cann wrote:

No, they can and do last ages. If built properly. Cheap too. Hrad wearing, but nosiy and low grip.

The original macadam roads were IIRC crushed stone chippings that bedded down. MOT type I etc. Tarmacadam (tarmac) was the application of a layer of hot tar to the surface into whch chippings are rolled. Tough flexible and reasonably hard wearing, and NO DUST (the bane of the 30's motorists). Its what most B roads are. Coulur depends on what colour chippings are rolled in. Flint makes for a briown road, granite for a grey/black one.
Asphalt is I think a deeper layer of tar and stone filler, that is super smooth and what best motorways are made of. You can even add ground up car tyres for super quite and exta good grip.
Bitumen? Not sure what that is - maybe a cold applied layer with chippings thrown on top. Sets by solvent evaoporation?

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wrote:
Thanks all for the feedback. I'll pass it on.
tommy
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Paul Mc Cann wrote:

    All new motorways have a concrete base! Topped with a bituminous layer which is replaceable when it wears.
    Regards     Capitol
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snipped-for-privacy@spamfree.freeserve.co.uk says...

Is this true ?
They actually pour and let set a complete concrete road and then tarmacadam over it ?
Are you perhaps referring to some type of foundation ?
--
Paul Mc Cann

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Capitol wrote:

NO, they don't.
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The Natural Philosopher wrote:

    Go out and look at the M11 repairs! Pratt!
    Regards     Capitol
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Capitol wrote:

One case doesn not make it unbbiquitous.
The M11 was built from concrete. On an MOT base. Cheap, haerdwearing, crap grip and expensive to repair if you want to take it up...
Its now being resurfaced...
NO motorway has a concrete BASE. SOME have concrete SURFACES. SOME are repaired by stiicking asphalt over, though I suspect thsi is a bodge that will not last...

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Try
http://www.highwaysmaintenance.com/Asphtext.htm

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