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CostHelper > Home and Garden  > Driveways, Pools & Outdoor Living > Macadam Driveway

Macadam Driveway Cost


How Much Does Macadam Driveway Cost?

 
average costResurfacing with Macadam: $600-$1,800 for 12'x50'high costNew Macadam Driveway: $1,200-$2,400 for 12'x50'

Also called tar and chip, oil and stone, chip and seal, or seal chip, a macadam driveway is built by spraying the driveway base with hot liquid asphalt, coating that with small stones, then compacting the stones into the sticky substance to form a hard, permanent surface. Unlike asphalt, a macadam driveway is relatively low maintenance because it does not need sealing each year. A macadam driveway typically lasts 6-10 years, but with another layer of tar and stones it can last 15 to 20 years.

Typical costs:

  • Installing a macadam driveway can cost about $1-$3 or more a square foot when resurfacing an existing driveway, or $600-$1,800 for a 12'x50' single-car driveway); and $2-$4 or more a square foot for a new driveway (typically with a gravel base), or $1,200-$2,400 for 12'x50' (600 square feet). Costs can go higher depending on the amount of work needed to prepare the base and the quality and amount of the stone used in the top layer.
  • Driveway contractors typically do not charge by the square foot, but instead quote their total price for a specific project.
What should be included:
  • Installing a macadam driveway requires professional equipment and a trained crew, and is not a good do-it-yourself project. AskTheBuilder.com provides a video overview[1] of the installation process.
  • Liquid asphalt sticks best to warm, dry surfaces; hot, dry weather offers the best conditions for installing a macadam driveway. It is also important that stone chips are spread on the liquid asphalt before it cools. Once the driveway is installed, maintenance is minimal. (Although some have a top layer of loose gravel, which can make s it impossible to hose down the driveway without removing the loose stones.) AskTheBuilder.com explains tar and chip driveway installation and upkeep[2] .
Additional costs:
  • Because a driveway connects to a public street, there may be local regulations governing the width of the driveway and the materials used to build it. Typically a permit will be required, and permit fees can vary from nominal to pricey, depending on location.
Discounts:
  • Discounted prices may be available for large projects. For example, a driveway of at least 6,000 square feet, Hicks Paving[3] in Hampton, NJ has rates starting at 70 cents!! a square foot, depending on the amount of prep work needed and the quality of surface stone chosen; at this price, a 6,000-square-foot macadam driveway would cost $4,200.
Shopping for macadam driveway:
  • Tar and chip driveways are installed by asphalt or paving contractors; ask friends, neighbors or local construction companies for recommendations. The Better Business Bureau lists tips for selecting an asphalt driveway contractor[4] .
  • The macadam process requires specific equipment and techniques, and not all asphalt companies install this type of driveway. Call and ask specifically if they install macadam driveways (aka tar and chip, chip and seal or chip seal).
  • If possible, get several estimates; ask for and check references (if possible, visit a previous project, to see how the driveway looks after use); and make sure the company is properly insured and licensed.
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External Resources:
  1.  www.askthebuilder.com/tar-and-chip-driveway-video/
  2.  www.askthebuilder.com/tar-and-chip-driveway-installation-and-upkeep/
  3.  www.hickspaving.com/tar-chip.html
  4.  www.bbb.org/dayton/business-reviews/paving-contractors/industry-tips/asphalt-drive...
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