Why does my Driveway crack?

Why does my Driveway crack?

What horrible weather we’re having in Birmingham, it’s February and we’ve already gone through the alphabet of names for all the storms we’ve had so far. But have you noticed, once all the snow and ice has cleared from your driveway – you’re surprised and shocked to see a crack that wasn’t there before?

Here at RG Driveways-Solihull | Birmingham Hire, we say that your driveway might needs some desperate repairs as well as regular care and maintenance. Since your driveway can’t talk, you’ll have to read the signs. Let’s get the crack away.

Linear Cracks

Just like you as you get older, hairline cracks start to show. The cracks will continue to spread and widen, even deepening which can lead to bigger problems down the road (if you pardon the pun).

Ricki Grenfell of RG Driveways mentions: “a hot sealer is the only long-term solution, since the crack fillers sold at home centres are temporary fixes. To do it right, you have to heat the crack filler. It burns into the walls of the crack. When it cools, it expands and fills the crack. It’s a permanent fix.”

Spider-Web Cracks

The top layer of the driveway is failing, because of either an inferior asphalt installation or an excessive use of sealers. As it could be that people covered up the driveway before, by building layer upon layer of sealers.

However, the solution is to remove the cracks asphalt, recompact the aggregate, and fill in the area with new material. Applying an overlay over the entire driveway will ensure that the new addition blends in for a consistent surface.


Our Northern friends such as Sheffield, Birmingham, Manchester, even Edinburgh have buckling caused by frost and snow. The soil below the driveway is saturated and that makes it easier to freeze and causes the ground to move. Another possible cause could be driving very heavy vehicles or machinery on the driveway, which can cause the asphalt to buckle or develop ruts.

Fading Colour

Over time, wear and tear from rain, sun, and vehicle traffic can deteriorate a driveway’s surface, causing asphalt to lose its jet-black appearance and turn grey. If left untreated, the surface can become brittle and more susceptible to cracking. But fading by itself is not indicative of a larger problem. 

Sinking Driveway

The garage downspouts could be channelling rainwater to the area, washing away the soil or aggregate. If water is ponding next to it, the area will become saturated. It’s always a good idea to have the water drain away from the driveway.

Guides to Choosing the Right Driveway

The driveway finish should be you to decide on, the base that you lay should also essentially be the same and ideally 100-150mm of hardcore. However, the most efficient method is to use machines that spread and tamp hardcore such as, digger buckets that are effective tampers.


It is very useful to have hardcore laid as early as possible as it aids access and stops the site becoming a quagmire. A handy guide suggests that drain-laying timetables do not always allow this use of machinery. Whether it is worth getting machinery in later just to lay hardcore depends on your driveway size.

The simple finishes are a little cheaper than paving’s you tend to find in other homes, but these poured surfaces are now rarely used by us here at RG Driveways in Birmingham. Some specialist operators now offer patterned concrete paving or resin-bonded driveways.

They can look highly attractive but are very expensive, if they are applied to a large area. Permeable concrete and asphalt are also available, made with a single size aggregate that leaves gaps for water to pass through.