Tarmac Vs Block Paving Driveways 

When it comes to having your driveway resurfaced, you can be faced with the dilemma of which material and technique to choose. With so many different options available on the market, it can be overwhelming and confusing when trying to pick the best option for you. 

However, the dedicated team at Bestco Surfacing are going to inform you of everything you need to know about the two most popular materials for driveways, tarmac and block paving. 

What is tarmac?

Tarmac is one of the most commonly used materials by local authorities for surfacing roads, pavements and airport runways. It is essentially a surfacing method which is comprised of tar-like materials mixed with mineral aggregates like Portland cement, sand, gravel or concrete. 

What is block paving? 

Block paving is typically seen and used for walkways, driveways and patios. In simple terms, it is numerous blocks/bricks being laid in a pattern secured with cement and sand to create a complete surface. 

Pros of tarmac 

One of the main reasons that people turn to tarmac is due to its price. A tarmac drive is usually substantially cheaper than a block paving driveway. This is partially to do with the price of the materials but is predominantly determined by the time it takes to install. 

Many people are surprised how quickly tarmac can be installed and this installation time prevents any inconvenience to the property owners. Tarmac is also known for being incredibly hardwearing and longlasting, it is perfect for heavy usage and will be able to withstand multiple vehicles going on and off of the driveway frequently. 

Pros of block paving 

The thing that the majority of people love about block paving is its versatility. The vast range of shapes and colours of blocks available is insane and the patterns that they can be laid in can be personalised to perfectly complement your house. When block paving is properly installed, it can also last for many years and some argue that it can often last a lot longer than a tarmac driveway. A huge pro to block paving is that if a block becomes damaged or an area of the drive needs replacing, then it is relatively easy to lift and relay or replace them. 

Cons to tarmac 

Although tarmac does now come in a variety of colours, unfortunately, it still doesn’t give the classy and elegant appearance that block paving does. The other downside to tarmac is that it can’t always be laid on small or awkwardly shaped driveways. To ensure that tarmac is laid properly it usually requires a few different machines and bits of kit and depending on the size and shape of the space you would like tarmac laid, they sometimes can’t be used properly.

Cons to block paving 

Unfortunately, with beauty comes expense. Block paving can be quite expensive, prices differ depending on the blocks used and how many you require. The time it takes to lay these bricks is also much longer than laying tarmac as the bricks are all set individually. It is also essential to ensure that each of these individual bricks is level. The only other downside to block paving is that it is prone to moss and weeds growing and therefore does require maintenance.

So, which is best?

Ultimately there are three main factors which will determine whether a block paving or tarmac driveway is installed; the finished look you desire, the time you have to complete the work and your budget. Of course, there is the option to combine the two, it isn’t uncommon for people to opt for a tarmac drive with paving decoration. 

If you would like to speak to an expert about these driveway solutions and your requirements in more detail our team at Bestco Surfacing will gladly help. We will use our years of experience to provide you with high-quality free advice to ensure that you feel happy to make an educated decision regarding your driveway. 


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