Crushed Asphalt vs. Crushed Concrete

If you are searching for a material to pave your driveway with, crushed asphalt and crushed concrete are excellent options.

However, it can be difficult to identify the differences between them. Consequently, it may be tough for you to decide which one is best for your construction projects.

To help you, we have explained these two driveway materials and highlighted both their advantages and disadvantages. 

What is Crushed Asphalt?

In terms of appearance, asphalt is a black liquid. It is very sticky in texture. Asphalt comes from petroleum, which is a naturally-found material.

Asphalt is mainly used to pave roads and driveways. It used to be known as asphaltum. 

Crushed asphalt is made from reused asphalt. This old asphalt had previously been laid on the ground and used as a pavement.

This asphalt has then been crushed and transformed into gravel. Because of this, it is essentially a recycled material. This is sometimes known as Recycled Asphalt Pavement (RAP). 

This makes it quite an eco-friendly material since you are preserving natural resources instead of wasting them. In addition, this asphalt is advantageous because it is sturdy and durable.

This is why it has been used for paving. Its strength, affordability, and eco-friendliness make it a popular choice for many construction projects. 

What is Crushed Concrete?

Meanwhile, concrete is made from fine materials. These aggregate materials, such as gravel, sand, and crushed stone, have been combined with cement. This cement will harden over time. 

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Most people will be very familiar with concrete. After all, it is the second most frequently used material in the world, bested only by water. As a result, it is commonly used in building projects. 

As you may have guessed, this is made by putting the concrete material in a crusher machine. This will break down the concrete into smaller pieces and make it more coarse.

This concrete material is commonly used in old and abandoned buildings. The crushing of used concrete is a common practice on construction sites. 

Like crushed asphalt, crushed concrete is more environmentally friendly than other materials. This is because the concrete has been reused, thus making it more renewable. 

Crushed Asphalt vs Crushed Concrete

To help you gain a clearer understanding of these materials, here are some of their similarities and differences. 

The main benefit of these crushed materials over their pure counterparts is that they are more affordable.

Both crushed asphalt and crushed concrete are far cheaper than standard asphalt and concrete. Despite this, asphalt tends to be slightly cheaper than concrete. 

Another benefit of these materials is that they are more renewable resources. This is because they have been made from recycled materials.

As a consequence, you can use these materials in the knowledge that they are more friendly for the environment.

Both traditional asphalt and concrete have some environmental problems, given that manufacturing them produces a lot of greenhouse gases. 

One of the things that separate asphalt and concrete are their appearances. Crushed asphalt tends to be darker than crushed concrete. While concrete is grayer in color, asphalt is closer to black. 

Techninally, asphalt is actually a type of concrete. This is known as asphalt concrete. Despite this, crushed asphalt and concrete are made in very different ways, as described above.

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Asphalt concrete is mostly used in parking lots, roads, and airports. The aggregate is then combined with asphalt, hence the term “asphalt concrete.”

What are their uses?

If you have paving projects or a driveway in need of improvement, you may want to try using either crushed asphalt or concrete. These materials can be sued for:

  • Driveways
  • Pathways
  • Walkways
  • Retaining walls
  • Airport runways

Consequently, they are quite versatile materials. They are used both by homeowners who are completing small projects and professional contractors who are working on building sites.

Of course, more industrial uses will require heavy machinery. 

Which Material Should I Use?

This will depend on your preference and your needs. Overall, we advise using crushed asphalt in most situations. It tends to be cheaper than crushed concrete, meaning that you will not need to spend loads of money on your DIY projects.

Therefore, it will be more efficient for people who want to complete their projects on a limited budget. 

Crushed asphalt is also more aesthetically pleasing than concrete. If you are looking to use it for your driveway, it will create a slick look thanks to its dark color.

You may also find that asphalt is stronger than concrete. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Is gravel better than crushed asphalt?

Regular gravel is composed of fragmented rocks. Though both are incredible materials for driveways and other construction projects. As to which one will be better, this will depend on what you prioritize. 

While asphalt is more durable and looks slicker, gravel will be cheaper. It will also require less maintenance than crushed asphalt. 

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If you have the money, we recommend spending a little extra on getting asphalt. This will ensure that your project is of high quality. 

What is the most affordable way to cover a driveway?

If the price is of major concern to you, gravel will likely be the most effective solution. It will only cost approximately $9.50 per metric ton, though prices will vary.

Crushed asphalt and concrete are also relatively inexpensive, though they will set you back more than gravel. You may want to avoid paving stones if you are paving on a very narrow budget. 

How long will it take for asphalt to harden?

It usually takes around 24 hours for asphalt to harden fully. However, it is often advised that you do not put any vehicles on newly laid asphalt for a few days, namely a week.

This period may be longer if the weather is warm, since this may prolong the time it takes for asphalt to entirely dry. 

Final Thoughts

Provided that you use the right equipment, you will likely be satisfied with the final product when using crushed asphalt and crushed concrete.

Though these two materials are extremely similar and can be used interchangeably in most situations, there are some key differences between them. This includes their cost and their origins.

If you are thinking of using either material, both will work well for you. Ultimately, we recommend crushed asphalt over crushed concrete.