What Is Pervious Concrete And What Are The Benefits Of Using It For Your Home's Driveway?

Normal concrete driveways will produce a significant amount of stormwater runoff. Even though concrete is porous, rain can't drain through it very quickly, and a large amount of rainwater will be carried along the driveway in the direction it's sloping. Managing stormwater runoff is important to prevent your home's foundation from being damaged by too much water.

One way to make managing the stormwater runoff in your front yard easier is to replace your driveway with one made from pervious concrete. This special concrete mix has superior drainage compared to normal concrete, which helps minimize the volume of stormwater running off of your driveway. To learn more about pervious concrete and the benefits and downsides of using it for your driveway, read on.

What Is Pervious Concrete?

All forms of concrete are made by combining cement and crushed stone aggregate, and pervious concrete is a special form of concrete that doesn't use any very small stones. Removing the tiny stones from the concrete mix makes the resulting concrete much more porous, so water will drain straight through the driveway and into the soil underneath. Pervious concrete is commonly used for large parking lots because it makes managing stormwater runoff much easier — any rain falling on the concrete will soak quickly into the soil below. However, pervious concrete can also be used to construct driveways in order to improve yard drainage.

What Are the Benefits of a Pervious Concrete Driveway?

The primary benefit of using pervious concrete for your driveway is that it will considerably improve the drainage in your yard. If your concrete driveway slopes downwards towards your home, for example, you may end up with a substantial amount of stormwater runoff pooling against your home's foundation. Standing water near a concrete foundation will slowly cause damage to it, and repairing a failing foundation is an expensive and lengthy process — it's much better to prevent damage from happening in the first place.

Using pervious concrete for your driveway improves drainage because rainwater soaks right through it. This significantly reduces the volume of stormwater runoff on your property, which helps to prevent water from ponding in your yard or collecting near your home's foundation.

What Are the Downsides of a Pervious Concrete Driveway?

The main downside of using pervious concrete for your driveway is that it's usually more expensive than regular concrete. Removing all of the small stones from the concrete mix requires special sorting equipment in order to filter out the smallest stones, and the need for special processing increases the price of the concrete mix.

In addition, pervious concrete is also less durable than regular concrete. Removing the smallest stones makes it less dense, which means that it's less able to withstand heavy traffic. For a residential driveway, however, this often is not an issue — pervious concrete will stand up to normal vehicle traffic. The lower density of pervious concrete primarily becomes a problem when heavy semi-trucks drive over it frequently.

Overall, using pervious concrete for your home's driveway helps to significantly improve the drainage in your front yard. It's the perfect solution to make managing stormwater runoff easier if your driveway is sloped towards your home, and it helps prevent your foundation from being damaged. If you're struggling with stormwater running off your driveway, contact a paving service in your area and ask them about replacing your driveway with one made of pervious concrete.