Protecting Your Asphalt Driveway Edges With Brick Materials

Posted on: 21 December 2015

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When you have an asphalt driveway installed on your property in Santa Fe, your contractors will spend a good deal of time on the edges of the formation to make sure that they are as strong as possible. While care is taken to make sure that the edges are not brittle, they will be the weakest area of the asphalt due to the lack of support from your lawn. Driving over the unsupported edges can cause cracks to form. Instead of spending money on a necessary fix if a crack forms along the asphalt edge, make sure to provide your driveway edges with the necessary support they need with a brick border.

Purchase Your Materials

One of the best ways to make sure that your asphalt driveway edges are reinforced is to add edging to the sides. Not only will the edging serve as a physical barrier, but it can act as a visual one as well to keep you from driving off the edge of the structure. The best physical and visual barrier can be formed out of bricks. Clay fired, sand lime, and engineering bricks are all varieties you can choose from. If you are working on a budget, then think about buying common red clay fired bricks from your local masonry supplier. If you want smooth and strong bricks, then think about sand lime varieties. If you have a wet property and are concerned about moisture erosion, then engineering bricks are a good option. 

Once you have chosen the brick material you want, think about the brick size that is best for your property. You can pick the length and width that you think will look the best. However, make sure that the bricks are between two and one-quarter to two and five-eighths of an inch thick. This will allow you to set the bricks into the earth a small amount so they are as secure as possible.

Prepare The Edges

Purchase your bricks after picking out the variety and size you desire. Afterwards, look at the edge of the asphalt driveway to see if it is straight. If you see small curves or juts coming out of the edge, then think about renting a partner or concrete saw at your local home store. This tool has a large and strong blade that can be lowered against the asphalt edge to cut through it cleanly without causing cracks and breaks. If you are uncomfortable using this type of tool, then think about hiring a local asphalt installation expert to cut the sides of your driveway so they are as straight as possible. 

Once the edges are straight, dig a trench on either side of the asphalt driveway that is about five inches deep and as wide as the bricks you purchased. You should purchase some crushed gravel or limestone gravel that is small in diameter. Gravel with rocks that are around one-quarter to one-half inch in diameter will work well. Place about two and a half to three inches of gravel in each trench. The gravel will help to keep the bricks from sliding into the soft earth if you do end up driving over them.

Place The Bricks

After the gravel is secured, start at the trench ends that are closest to your home and place one brick at a time in the gravel. Press the brick into the trench so the top sits flush with the asphalt driveway. Use a rubber mallet to place pressure on the bricks if you do not have enough hand strength to press the bricks into place. Continue placing bricks until you reach the end of each trench. You will likely need to cut two bricks to size to fit the very ends of the trenches. Measure the space left along each trench and use a circular saw with a masonry blade to cut the bricks. Secure the cut bricks in the last bit of gravel in the trench with the help of your mallet. If you do not have a circular saw, you can fill in the end spaces with gravel instead of cut bricks. However, this will not provide as much support as the bricks will.