So, you’re looking to invest in a brand new driveway for your property but you’re tired of the same old boring concrete, gravel or tarmac options that you see everywhere…
Well, you’re in the right place. Whether you’re considering natural stone and you want to know more or you simply didn’t realise it was a viable material for a driveway, don’t worry – our Natural Stone Driveway Guide has got you covered.
What is Natural Stone?
Natural stone refers to any rock material that is formed naturally in the earth’s crust without human intervention. These stones are created over thousands or even millions of years through geological processes such as heat, pressure, and mineral crystallisation.
They are quarried from the earth’s surface and then cut and processed into various shapes for use in construction, landscaping, and decorative purposes.
There is a wide variety of natural stones available, each with its own unique characteristics, colours, textures, and properties.
Some common types of natural stone used in various applications include:
Can You Use Natural Stone for a Driveway?
Yes, of course you can! Natural Stone, such as our Sandstone Pavers range, is the perfect material for creating a stylish driveway that’s built to last. Natural Stone provides the perfect combination of beauty, durability and versatility – no wonder it’s fast becoming the most popular choice for modern driveways!
We’ll cover the benefits of using Natural Stone for your driveway in more depth later in our guide, but essentially you can rest assured knowing that choosing natural stone for your driveway will not only elevate your property in terms of its appearance but also provide a long-lasting and captivating entrance that you’ll cherish for years to come.
For more information, check out our article – Is Paving Suitable for Driveways?
What Types of Natural Stone are Commonly Used for Driveways?
When it comes to choosing the perfect natural stone for your dream driveway, you’ll be delighted by the range of stunning options available. Each stone exudes timeless elegance and brings a touch of natural beauty that can transform your home’s appearance.
Here are some of the most popular choices for Natural Stone driveways:
- Granite – Picture a driveway that stands the test of time with the remarkable strength and durability of granite. Its stunning array of colours will make a bold statement, impressing visitors and adding value to your property.
- Sandstone – Elevate your driveway to a whole new level with the captivating textures and warm hues of sandstone. Experience the pleasure of walking on its smooth surface, while its resilience ensures a driveway that welcomes you home for years to come.
- Limestone – Unleash the magic of limestone, a stone of refinement and elegance. Its subtle yet sophisticated shades of grey, beige, or blue will lend an air of sophistication to your driveway.
- Cobblestone Setts – Embrace the charm of cobblestone setts, with their rustic and timeless allure. A cobblestone driveway will evoke nostalgia and a sense of warmth, welcoming you home in style.
No matter which natural stone you choose, your driveway will become a work of art that reflects your unique taste and personality. Plus, with proper installation and care, your natural stone driveway will remain a captivating focal point of your property for years, while also adding value and curb appeal.
Benefits of Natural Stone Driveways
Natural Stone materials like sandstone, limestone and granite, have a wide range of their own unique properties that make them an ideal choice for driveways. So why should you opt for natural stone as the material for your new driveway?
- Timeless Look – Sandstone, limestone, and granite are known for their timeless beauty and sophistication. Their natural colours, textures, and unique patterns create a stunning and inviting driveway that complements any architectural style.
- Durability – These natural stones are renowned for their exceptional durability and strength. They can withstand heavy vehicle traffic, harsh weather conditions, and the test of time, ensuring your driveway remains intact and attractive for many years.
- Safety and Slip-Resistance – Natural stone materials like sandstone, limestone, and granite often have naturally textured surfaces, providing excellent slip resistance. This feature ensures a safe and secure driveway, even during wet or rainy weather.
- Minimal Maintenance – These stones require minimal upkeep, making your life easier. Regular cleaning and occasional sealing will keep your driveway looking pristine for years to come, without the need for extensive maintenance efforts.
- Versatility – Sandstone, limestone, and granite offer a wide range of shapes, sizes, and patterns, allowing you to unleash your creativity. Whether you prefer a classic layout or a more intricate design, these stones can bring your vision to life.
- Increased Property Value – An exquisite natural stone driveway enhances the curb appeal of your property, making it more attractive to potential buyers and increasing its overall value.
- Resilience to Weather – Sandstone, limestone, and granite are highly resistant to weathering, making them suitable for all climates. They can endure freezing temperatures, heavy rain, and intense heat, maintaining their beauty in any season.
- Distinctiveness – Each stone is unique, adding character and charm to your driveway. The individuality of natural stone ensures that your driveway stands out, setting it apart from conventional and generic alternatives.
Using sandstone, limestone, or granite for your driveway not only creates an aesthetically pleasing entrance but also ensures a durable and practical solution for your home. Their enduring charm, strength, and minimal maintenance requirements make these natural stone materials a worthwhile investment that will serve your property well for years to come.
Disadvantages of Natural Stone Driveways
While we’re strong believers in the benefits of choosing natural stone as your driveway material, it’s only fair to cover both sides of the story and explore the disadvantages of natural stone too!
- Cost – Compared with less aesthetically pleasing driveway materials like concrete or tarmac, natural stone pavers or cobble setts can be more expensive.
- Thickness & Weight – Natural stone is generally heavier than other driveway materials, which may require more substantial support and preparation of the base. Thicker stones might also be necessary to withstand heavier vehicle loads.
- Cracking – While natural stone is durable, it can still be susceptible to cracking under extreme stress or if the base is not adequately prepared or maintained.
- Weed Growth – Weeds and vegetation can sometimes grow between the gaps of natural stone pavers, requiring occasional maintenance to keep them at bay.
Despite these disadvantages, many homeowners find that the unique beauty, durability, and timeless appeal of natural stone driveways outweigh the drawbacks. It ultimately comes down to your budget, preferences, and willingness to maintain the driveway properly over time.
Proper installation and regular upkeep can help minimize some of these challenges, ensuring your natural stone driveway remains a stunning and functional addition to your property.
Already made your mind up on a Natural Stone driveway? Why not check out our Cobble Setts Laying Guide for information on how to lay your new driveway!
Natural Stone Driveway Maintenance Tips
Once you’ve made the investment in a brand-new natural stone driveway, you’ll want to look after it and keep it in tip-top condition for years to come! To help you prolong the life of your natural stone driveway, we’ve put together some expert recommendations:
- Regular Cleaning – Sweep or rinse the driveway regularly to remove debris, dirt, and leaves. This prevents abrasive particles from wearing down the stone’s surface.
- Avoid Harsh Chemicals – Use a mild detergent or natural stone-specific cleaner when cleaning your driveway. Avoid acidic or harsh chemicals that can damage the stone or degrade sealants.
- Remove Stains Promptly – Quickly clean up spills and stains to prevent them from seeping into the porous surface of the stone. Use a gentle cleaner designed for natural stone to treat stains.
- Resealing – If your natural stone driveway is sealed, consider reapplying the sealant every 1-3 years, depending on the stone type and level of wear. Resealing protects against staining and enhances the stone’s longevity.
- Proper Drainage – Ensure proper drainage around the driveway to prevent water from pooling on the surface. Pooling water can weaken the stone and lead to erosion.
- Avoid Heavy Loads and Sharp Objects – Minimise parking heavy vehicles or using sharp-edged tools on the driveway. These activities can cause stress and damage to the stone.
- Regular Inspections – Periodically inspect the driveway for signs of cracks, chips, or settling. Address any issues promptly to prevent further damage.
Prevent Weed Growth – Use a weed barrier beneath the stone and apply an appropriate weed killer to prevent weed growth between the gaps.
- Avoid High-Pressure Washing – While occasional pressure washing can be beneficial, avoid using excessively high pressure, as it can dislodge stones and damage the surface.
- Protect Against Ice and Snow – During winter, use a plastic shovel to remove snow instead of metal tools that can scratch the stone. Avoid using salt or de-icing chemicals that could harm the stone.
- Address Oil Stains – If your driveway is exposed to oil spills, use a poultice or an absorbent material to draw out the oil before cleaning the area.
By following these maintenance tips, you can preserve the natural beauty and longevity of your stone driveway, ensuring it remains a stunning focal point of your property for many years to come.
Designing Your Natural Stone Driveway
Interested in transforming your outdoor space with a brand-new natural stone driveway? Why not check out the RF Paving Instagram page for some inspiration!
Check out our wide range of Natural Stone Pavers and Driveway Cobble Setts available now at RF Paving in a variety of colours, styles, shapes and sizes. We’ve supplied natural stone materials for numerous driveways and outdoor spaces across the UK, so you know you’re in capable hands when you choose RF.
Get a free quote today or speak to an expert member of the team on 01977 782 240 to place an order!