When installing a new driveway in the UK, you may be wondering how long it will take before you can start driving on it. As a general rule, you should allow at least five days for the concrete or tarmac to cure. To avoid damaging the driveway, be sure to drive gently and evenly. During the first few days, you will need to be extra careful. For more information, read our article Precautions when using block paving and other surfacing materials.
Allowing at least five days for tarmac to dry out
It can take up to three days for tarmac to solidify, but you should avoid driving on it for a few weeks to let it fully cure. If it stays soft after several days, there is a chance that there is still a solvent in the surface, which may evaporate naturally. If this is the case, it is advisable to use a surface treatment to speed up the process. However, this should only be used if the natural process is not sufficient.
It is important to keep the new driveway free from weeds, which are a natural problem with tarmac surfaces. They are particularly problematic if the driveway is next to a lawn. To prevent this, apply weed killer a week before installing the new driveway. Weed killer costs around PS5 per litre and is a cheap and effective way to prevent weeds from penetrating the tarmac. Moreover, weeds have deep roots, which can easily damage the tarmac if they are not killed beforehand.
Many homeowners make the mistake of DIY paving and do not allow enough time for the tarmac to cure before parking on it. In actuality, a tarmac driveway may take up to two days to dry completely, and this is not enough time to park a car on it. It is advised to leave the new driveway for at least five days before parking on it.
Allowing at least five days for concrete to cure
You must allow at least five days for your new driveway to completely cure before parking on it. There are several factors that can affect how long the concrete needs to cure. Adding too much water can lengthen the time it takes to cure. It also means that the mixture won’t be as flexible and easy to handle as it could be. The right balance should be struck between the ease of use and the speed at which the concrete dries.
The concrete needs a minimum of five days of water to fully cure before it can be driven on. This is because vehicles are heavy and take longer to walk or drive on it. Additionally, you should avoid using bicycles or skateboards on the new driveway for a few days after it has been poured. The best way to ensure your new driveway is ready for use is to allow it at least five days to cure.
If the weather is cold, it is best to allow at least five days for your new driveway to fully cure. If you are doing a DIY project, you can find curing compounds that contain soluble emulsions that form a film on top of the freshly-poured concrete. The film keeps water from evaporating while allowing the concrete to cure evenly. Some curing compounds may disintegrate after a few days. In such a case, you should remove the coating using a scrubber or a hammer.
Precautions when using block paving
Before you start laying your block paving for your driveway, you must know a few things about it. You should check the quality of your paving, as many blocks can be damaged by excessive moisture. For driveways, a sub-base is a crucial part of the process. If this step is neglected, your blocks may sink. Another type of block paving is permeable, but it is usually more expensive.
Depending on the design of your driveway, it may be necessary to install a permeable layer beneath the paving. This will allow water to drain away and store itself in the ground without the need to build an elaborate sewerage system. These are commonly known as Type 3 and 4/20 sub-bases. In addition, they can be made into rain gardens, collecting rainwater from conventional impermeable surfaces.
When buying block paving, you should know that you are purchasing it by area, not per block. To determine the size you require, simply multiply the length by width. This will give you the total area in square metres or square feet. After calculating the exact amount you need, the supplier should round up to the next full pack. If you have a lot of leftover paving, you should allow up to five per cent for wastage.