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Pros and Cons of Tar and Chip Driveways (Nashville, TN)

November 13, 2023

Tar and chip driveways are made of several layers of material that help seal your driveway for a polished, yet uncommon look. This type of driveway goes by many names—“seal chip” and “macadam driveways” both refer to the same thing.

Besides tar and chip being one of the most inexpensive types of driveway material, it is also highly durable in high-traffic areas and requires less maintenance than certain alternatives, including asphalt. In Nashville, TN, there may be no better option for your home or business than a tar and chip driveways.

Benefits of using tar and chip materials

Tar and chip driveways are composed of several layers of materials. First gravel, then asphalt, then loose stones are laid and pressed together. Not only are those materials (especially when combined) exceptionally durable, but they also allow your tires to get great traction.

The low cost of the tar and chip driveway is a great incentive. You can expect to pay anywhere from $2 to $5 per square foot for install of tar-and-chip. Where you live and the approximate cost of living accounts for the difference in price.

Maintenance costs will also prove far less over the lifespan of the driveway, which is usually seven to 10 years. Tar and chip tends to crack less than other materials, notably concrete, which means you can enjoy the look of your driveway without having to reseal or mend cracks over time.

Antoher one of tar and chip driveways’ benefits in Nashville, TN is their fairly distinctive appearance. They pair great with a rustic farmhouse or cabin look—in fact, they are quite common in rural areas. The materials are decidedly casual and unaffected, which is a great fit for homeowners who wish to evoke a simple aesthetic.

If you are looking to have residential paving done, the large size of driveways for rural or suburban houses is a particularly great fit for not only the look but also the cost of tar and chip installation. You will spend less time installing and maintaining even the largest or longest of driveways.

Tradeoffs of using tar and chip materials

Because tar and chip driveways are a bit more uncommon than their asphalt or concrete counterparts, contractors can be difficult to find and may upcharge for the specialized service and knowledge.

If you live in an area that gets a good amount of snow, snowplows may come through your neighborhood. These machines are known for causing damage to tar and chip driveways and streets. On the flip side, because tar and chip materials provide great traction, during icy or snowy conditions you will have less chance of slipping around, both in your car and out.

Tar and chip driveways are homogenous all the way through. If you are looking for a bit of design variation in your driveway, then a different material could be a better fit for your home or business installation.

Take the time to research providers and contractors before committing to installation and enjoying tar and chip driveway benefits on your Nashville, TN residential or commercial property. When you’re ready, contact RoadBuilders for a consultation with a professional.

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