After the most common types of driveways that are available, some customers prefer a different type of surface for their driveway. It could be the price saving or the fact its more natural. Either way we think gravel driveways in Dublin are a great way to create a welcoming entrance to your home.
What confuses a lot of people is the difference between shingle and gravel. Well both of them are actually the same with the only difference being the shape and size of the stone. Shingle is much more singular coloured, rounder and generally smaller than gravel. For driveways, gravel is the much more common term for it.
What is a gravel driveway?
A gravel driveway is a coarse / rounded stone like shingle. It can vary in size and in colour and is suitable for any type of vehicle or foot traffic. However, if it is more orientated towards cars, we recommend a larger stone as turning on it can crush smaller gravel. Larger gravel is not as easy to negotiate on foot so there is a little trade off involved when you are deciding.
Gravel driveways are prepared the same way as any other driveway is prepared. It requires a solid base, preferably permeable as a gravel driveway when its installed correctly will be a permeable driveway and you won’t require drainage for your driveway. It will need heavy duty membrane sheeting to stop weeds growing through as well.
You can choose to lay your gravel driveway on stabilisers which helps to keep the gravel in place or you can lay it directly down on top of the membrane. It you opt for a directly, make sure to use an edging kerb, block paving kerb or a paving block which is benched in concrete to contain your gravel otherwise it will spill out.
Why Choose Gravel For Your Driveway?
Gravel has some benefits to it. Firstly, it is inexpensive when you compare it to block paving or tarmac for your Dublin driveway. Secondly, its very easily installed so on larger driveways, the job is done significantly faster than other styles of driveways and thirdly, its permeable. No issues with water flooding or water pooling on your driveway.
The most common form of gravel colour used in Ireland is the gold colour. Available from quality suppliers like Glenview Natural Stone, its colour is a soft autumn gold colour which blends in nicely with really any style of a house. Of course, there is other colours available which are easily viewed at any stone quarry.
Can I Use Gravel With Other Products?
You can still choose to use block paving in Dublin with your driveway by adding a paving edge at the entrance of your driveway or right at your front door. It really helps at the front door as it keeps stones out of your hallway.
Maintenance on a gravel driveway is performed once or twice a year by going out and raking over any dips or hollows you see in it. You should buy yourself a cheap blower to blow the leaves off the gravel as well. As long as the membrane stays intact below it, you really shouldn’t have any problems with weeds growing through.
Once every 3 years you should get a little top of gravel that matches it as gravel will slowly break down over time and become fairly worn out.
We spoke a lot about gravel for your driveway but gravel is also great if you are looking to have a low maintenance patio or garden area. If you have a flower bed that needs constant attention, you can add a layer of membrane over it. Cut out the spaces for the plants and cover the entire area with gravel.
On patio areas, gravel is great for running as natural drainage around the outside of it and can be used in conjunction with many a water feature to enhance the sound of the water falling. It is not great for a seating area obviously as no chair will sit correctly on it however.
Overall gravel makes a great long term and cost-effective solution for any driveway in Dublin. It provides long term value, fast installation and can be laid on any type of a driveway area. It can be enhanced with paving products, granite products and even tarmac.
If you are thinking of having a driveway laid with gravel in Dublin, make sure to check around and get a reliable company that can supply and install it. Most suppliers don’t install it so you’d better off asking some local contractors for prices on supplying and installing it as they have the equipment to get it and lay it.
You can visit Glenview Natural Stone to see examples of the gravel that is available in County Dublin.