Skip to Content

Crushed Concrete Driveway Pros And Cons

Here are the crushed concrete driveway pros and cons with what it is, appearance, potential problems, cost and how crushed concrete driveways compare to gravel.
Detached garage with siding, roof, epoxy walkway, and crushed concrete driveway

For numerous homes, crushed concrete is a preferred driveway paving material. Crushed concrete, like gravel, is composed of small fragments of concrete that have been pounded or ground to make a pavement material.

There are various reasons why someone would prefer to apply crushed concrete in their driveway, but there are also several reasons why it is not ideal to use.

If you are curious about this popular paving option, let me show you what a crushed concrete driveway is. Let us also discuss its pros and cons.


What Is A Crushed Concrete Driveway? 

Beautiful house with crushed material driveway, hedge plants, dormers, bay window, and front porch

Crushed concrete is formulated from asphalt detritus from other infrastructure projects and can be repurposed to make driveways, footpaths, flower beds, and other structures. Any concrete construction, road, walkway, or parking lot that is demolished is normally thrown in a landfill.

Concrete is not biodegradable and will not degrade, thus it merely takes up space and causes environmental issues. Meanwhile, new concrete is being produced to restart the process. Fortunately, there is a solution to this wasteful and unproductive process – recycling.

Reusing crushed concrete aggregate for recycling reduces landfill overflow and prevents more commodities from being needed to make new concrete.

The concrete can be ground to precise specifications, cleaned to eliminate undesirable particles from the composition, and reused to solve a variety of building and landscaping issues.

Typically, crushed concrete is simply unloaded from a truck and spread over the compacted ground. After then, even large trucks can utilize the driveway; nevertheless, this brings us to what might be considered a drawback.

Even though the crushed stone types of driveways do not require costly repairs or upkeep, regular maintenance continues to remain essential.

What Does Crushed Concrete Look Like? 

Close up image of rocks for driveways

Crushed concrete is typically the detritus left over when concrete constructions are demolished or repaired. It generally resembles small pieces of rock, hence they are sometimes called synthetic or replicated rocks.

These materials are often seen on driveways and walkways and are sometimes applied to enhance the flooring surface of a garden or parking lot. In some areas, crushed concrete does look pulverized, resembling sand.

Pros of Crushed Concrete Driveways

House with garage, recycled material road, dormers, front lawn, porch, windows, and pitched roof

Very Affordable Cost: The greatest edge of using crushed concrete for driveways is its low cost. Because it is made from recycled materials, it is substantially less expensive than having new concrete poured. It is also far less expensive than natural stones.

Eco-Friendly: Another significant advantage of crushed concrete for driveways is its environmental friendliness. Utilizing this material slows the manufacture of new concrete while simultaneously freeing up landfill space. It keeps broken concrete from taking up too much space and redirects it to productive purposes.

Permeable and Versatile: Crushed concrete is permeable, contingent on how it is placed. This improves storm water movement and reduces the strain on local storm systems. This material is also noted for its versatility, since it may be used in combination with various types of paving. Hence, because of this advantage, it can be excellently used for driveways.

Crushed concrete has a wide range of applications: It is utilized as a functional material by residents, builders, and landscapers not only for driveways but also for general construction projects such as establishing a base for garden beds or total development objectives.

Moreover, if you desire the appearance of natural stones or brand new concrete, you can utilize crushed concrete to lay the foundation for your driveway and then put your choice surface materials atop. Considering how it would be designed, this employs less costly materials while still adding some permeability to your driveway.

Numerous forms of crushed concrete are suited for a wide range of applications. Nonetheless, only 21AA crushed concrete, 21AA crushed asphalt, and 22AA crushed concrete are appropriate alternatives for driveway surfaces. There are plenty of others that can also be utilized as a sub-base.

Cons Of Crushed Concrete For Driveways

House with pitched roof, recycled concrete driveway, large garage, and dormer

Durability Issues: Over time, you will see that crushed concrete driveways will face durability issues. Unreinforced and loose crushed concrete has the same drawbacks as loose gravel. It distributes and thins easily, needing you to regularly add more and level out your driveway to avoid bare areas and corrugations.

It Is Hard to Find High-Quality Crushed Concrete; Difficult to Lay: It is feasible to purchase and build your custom crushed concrete material; unfortunately, without professional advice, it might be difficult to locate the proper kind of crushed concrete for your task. Buying the improper size or type can lead to drainage or erosion problems.

Bulky to Work With: Crushed stone materials are also bulky and challenging to work with. Unless you are an experienced landscaper familiar with large weights and precise construction, you can hire a professional to guarantee that the task is done correctly the first time.

Easily Releases Dust: Crushed concrete also generates a lot of dust, which can attach to and get your vehicles dirty and dusty. The permeability of a non-stabilized crushed concrete driveway is usually significantly lower than that of a paver-stabilized driveway.

How Much Does Crushed Concrete Cost? 

Loose concrete pieces driveway leading to house with windows, porch, and front lawn

The cost of crushed concrete is often determined by the type of concrete purchased, economic conditions, and where it is obtained. Numerous firms will charge either by the yard or by the ton. Generally, the more you buy, the lower the charge per ton or yard.

Crushed concrete costs around $11 to $53 per ton, $16 to $75 per cubic yard, and $1 to $3 per cubic foot, but it depends on the volume.

Leftover concrete and damaged asphalt that is crushed and reused provide a less expensive and more environmentally friendly alternative for gravel roads. However, recycled concrete aggregates have the same durability as natural stones.

Is Crushed Concrete Good for Driveways?

Residential property with carport, and crushed rock driveway

To a large extent, yes. Crushed concrete driveways are significantly less expensive than gravel driveways, traditional concrete driveways, or asphalt parking areas. Crushed concrete is indeed an excellent driveway material because of its low cost, long life, reduced potential for breakage, and low maintenance. 

Crushed concrete, with its various advantages and applications, is a very functional and readily accessible material that can be a workable alternative not only for your driveway but for many of your building or landscaping demands as well.

Crushed Concrete Driveway Problems 

A crushed gravel driveway with metal railings, and trees surrounding it leading to a house

Yes, crushed concrete is a low-cost driveway material. On the contrary, there are restrictions and problems to be aware of. For example, if you want to have a gorgeous driveway, crushed concrete is hardly your top selection due to its minimal style.

This material is best suited for rural residences. It does not appear quite as attractive as other materials used for modern driveways

Potholes are another problem that you might need to cope with if you employ crushed concrete. Potholes and ruts are common on crushed concrete. Since it is commonly recycled, the concrete may not be as durable as new concrete.

As a result, it is not suitable for heavy-duty applications. If your driveway receives a lot of traffic, the crushed concrete that was utilized might quickly fracture and develop potholes.

Furthermore, crushed concrete inhibits water from passing through. Thus, water will puddle on the substratum of your driveway. When this happens, your driveway becomes prone to rutting. Plus, due to the irregular surface, outdoor elements like snow might be difficult to eliminate and clean. Using shovels or rollers might be difficult as well.

Concrete Aggregate Vs Gravel Driveways

House with crushed stone driveway, garage, pitched, roof, chimney, and windows

Choosing between crushed concrete aggregate and gravel might be challenging if you are unfamiliar with the attributes that define them.

When comparing the costs of these driveway materials, you will see in the marketplace that crushed concrete is significantly less pricey than any other selection. This is one of the primary reasons why people choose this material at first. They also think that it has the advantages of sustainability, minimal maintenance over a period, and safe application for any large vehicle.

There would be no breaking or weather damage, and it is manufactured from a material that might normally end up in a landfill, contributing to waste. When both functionality and cost are considered, reused crushed concrete always wins the contest.

Although crushed concrete requires less care, it will still necessitate a top-up of crushed concrete every one to two years. Potholes continue to form as the crushed concrete moves. Since it is often recycled broken concrete, the material may be sharper and contain other rock-like components like a brick.

Talking about gravel, you will still obtain a highly durable rock base with less upkeep at a reasonable price, albeit not as low as crushed concrete. However, you will still not have to fret about fractures or discoloration.

Because it is less porous than crushed concrete, it does not necessitate additional drainage to cope with run-off and surface water during heavy rainfalls. Furthermore, if you prefer the concept of being able to choose from a variety of colors, gravel might be a superior alternative.

Although it is low-maintenance, supplemental gravel must be added every several years. Gravel is often finer and thus can be left almost everywhere. You have to rake it on a regular schedule to keep it out of your lawn and balance out the surface area. Moreover, as previously stated, it is not as inexpensive as practically any crushed concrete on the market.

See more related content in our article about a heated driveway on this page.