Is Crushed Limestone Good For Driveways?
Gravel and stone driveways are hugely popular in the UK and worldwide. They are easy to lay, cheaper than the alternatives, and when correctly prepared – long-lasting and attractive.
They offer a traditional and charming feel to the many period homes that we have in this country, as well as bringing a more relaxed feel to rural properties. They are even recommended as a good security option, and they are perfect for a quick update of your current driveway.
Crushed limestone is one of the many materials that you can choose for your driveway, but the jury seems to be out on whether it is the best one overall. Our rundown on crushed limestone, its uses, and the advantages of using it for your driveway will point you in the right direction…
What Is Crushed Limestone?
Limestone is one of the most common rock types found across the globe. It is made up primarily of calcite (calcium) and has significant levels of phosphorus, copper, zinc and magnesium also.
It is often used as a soil additive to improve nutrients for gardens, and reduce acidity when crushed into very small pieces. However, when these stones are larger, it is also a good rock to use for driveways – mostly due to the fact it is a dense material.
Crushed limestone is commonly used as a ballast for railway tracks, and as a base material for concrete and tarmacked roads and driveways.
More recently, it has become a popular stone to use for the top layer of a gravel driveway – possibly because of its durability, but also possibly because it is cheap and readily available.
The more rare a driveway material is, the more expensive it will be, and limestone is so ubiquitous that you can find it almost anywhere!
5 Ways Limestone Can Be Used In Surfacing
Limestone can be used in so many ways, including the following 5 situations:
● Crushed limestone is often used as the aggregate in a concrete mix, along with cement, water and sand.
● Crushed limestone is the perfect base for roads, as it is strong enough to withstand vehicles driving over it. It is also smooth and affordable.
● Crushed limestone is a good bedding for underground pipework, as it doesn’t expand or move.
● Crushed limestone makes an excellent base for patio slabs and new driveways. It is the perfect drainage material.
● Crushed limestone make a great ballast for railways as it is so durable.
As you can see, this is a great material for all kinds of uses, but when it comes to your driveway – is limestone a good choice?
Limestone Is Versatile
Crushed limestone can be used both as a base and a top layer for your driveway. In fact, it can be incorporated as part of a concrete driveway, a resin bound or resin bonded driveway, as a base of a patio slab driveway, or as a top layer for a basic gravel driveway.
There are very few stone materials that meet all of these requirements. Crushed limestone is therefore the favourite of driveway contractors, and likely to form a good part of their standard material offerings.
Limestone Is Easily Available And Affordable
As one of the most commonly available rocks on Earth, limestone is able to be purchased almost anywhere, and forms a huge part of the quarry industry in many countries. This makes it very plentiful, and therefore very affordable.
The more rare a driveway material is, the more expensive it will be, and limestone is so ubiquitous that you can find it almost anywhere.
Because limestone contains calcium, it can be reactive to acid in rain water, and may become damaged over time – this can take many years however
Limestone Is Attractive
Despite it being so readily available, and used for so many different purposes, crushed limestone is an attractive material for use on your driveway. The light cream and honey coloured stones are natural in their shade, and therefore work well with gardens and most homes.
You will find that this colour does not look dirty too readily, and makes for an attractive and easy to look after driveway. You can also find darker limestone that will add a more dramatic look in dark grey. Limestone can even be dyed to make it a different colour if you wish.
Limestone Is Durable
Limestone is a material that is harder than most stones. It is used in the construction industry, due to its ability to withstand heavy weights.
On your driveway, it will remain in place more easily than lighter gravel, and will not become crushed under your tyres.
Drawbacks Of Crushed Limestone
● Crushed limestone can sometimes be jagged and sharp, making it uncomfortable to walk on, and possibly even damaging to your car tyres. This means that it may not be suitable as a top layer for a gravel driveway – you may prefer to use it as a base layer only.
● Limestone can sometimes be quite porous, and in certain cases, the stone may be quite weak.
In fact, if anyone down your street has recently renovated their driveway, and you like what you see, you could always pootle along to their place and complement them on their stunning new surface. Everyone likes a compliment, and you'll also get to discover the company they chose. Perfect!
Crushed Limestone Driveways: Is Diy Installation Doable?
If you're desperately seeking to cost cut, the D.I.Y route can be tempting-but unless you're a consummate Diy pro, it's definitely best to steer clear.
Driveway experts can tackle this task on your behalf-and for less than you might imagine. Like most projects, it pays to do your homework: not only will you be a more informed consumer, you'll also get a solid grasp of the going rate of this task-knowledge which you can ultimately use to your advantage.
Aim for at least 4-5 quotes-this will give you enough costs to compare. Any more and you'll be running around like a headless chicken (we've all been there!) Any less, and you won't be giving yourself the opportunity to get the very best deal on offer.
Want to know a secret trick of the trade? ALWAYS let each contractor know that you have other appointments lined up. Remember, the ball is very much in your court: each company wants to be the one to win your business (it's amazing how sharp they get with their pencils at the merest mention of a competitor!)
Independent review sites such as Trustpilot can provide an invaluable source of info, with reviews from previous customers giving a good indication not only of the quality of installation, but the standards of service as well.
Another good idea is to ask around. But who should you ask? In short, anyone and everyone! Family, friends and neighbours can all provide useful advice.
Crushed limestone is a versatile and affordable material that is used the world over in driveways, roads, and as part of the building industry. It is ideal for a driveway material, and is a great choice if you want a resin bound driveway that will last, and look great as well!
Resin Bound Surfacing: A New Use Of Limestone?
A resin bound driveway is created by taking resin, and combining it with your choice of aggregate stones. These can be any colour, or even any size, to give the exact look you want and desire.
This mixture is then pressed into a prepared concrete base that has been laid over a layer of crushed stone to offer good water drainage. The result is a resin based driveway that is durable, and will last upwards of 15 years.
It is easy to see how crushed limestone can be used as part of this process, and will enhance the look and the durability of this type of driveway:
● Crushed limestone makes a perfect material to be used as part of the sub-base of your resin bound driveway. When used as a layer beneath the concrete slab, it allows water to seep through, both filtering it, and distributing it across the entire space, preventing water from pooling on the surface.
● Crushed limestone can be used as the choice of aggregate to be mixed with the resin. The colouring is ideal for this purpose, and the many different colours to choose from allows for more diversity. However, if you want something special, it can even be dyed to fit your preferences.
● It is a strong and durable aggregate choice, and will last as long as any other stone option. When combined with resin, it becomes even stronger and longer lasting.
Crushed limestone is a versatile and affordable material that is used the world over in driveways, roads, and as part of the building industry. It is ideal for a driveway material, and is a great choice if you want a resin bound driveway that will last, and look great as well.
Ready to upgrade your existing surfacing? Talk to our driveway experts today, by calling 0800 1700 636, or by simply clicking the button below!