5 Items To Look For On A Driveway Paving Estimate -- Other Than Price

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It's common for paving contractors to provide customers with estimates before paving a driveway. Estimates show how much a paving job is expected to cost, but price isn't the only information that should be included in an estimate. When you receive an estimate from a paving contractor to pave your driveway here are some details -- other than price -- that you should look for in the estimate.

When the Work Will Be Done

An estimate should include both a price and a timeline for a paving job. A paving contractor likely won't be able to give you a definitive appointment time until you sign a contract, for they won't be willing to commit to a time unless they know they'll be earning revenue. In an estimate, though, a contractor should include how long a job is expected to take and when payment is due.

For example, an estimate might state that paving is to be done within an agreed-upon 3-day span. It may also state that a 50 percent deposit is due up front, and the remaining balance is to be paid when the work is completed.

What Grade Asphalt Will Be Used

An estimate should also detail the materials that will be used. In driveway paving, this primarily consists of the grade of asphalt that will be applied. There are three grades of asphalt:

  • I-2 (base asphalt)
  • I-5 (top grade asphalt)
  • I-4 (commercial top grade asphalt)

Many homeowners use I-5 grade asphalt, as it's more durable than I-2 and more affordable than I-4.

Whatever grade you select should be listed in any estimate you receive. This will ensure you know exactly what type of material will be used to pave your driveway. It also may explain a price difference between two estimates, if one has a lower-grade asphalt than the other.

How Thick the Asphalt Will Be Applied

In addition to listing the materials used, an estimate should also explain how the work will be done. Specifically, a driveway paving estimate ought to note how thick the asphalt will be applied.

For most homes, a thickness of 2 to 3 inches of asphalt is sufficient. There's a chance your paving contractor recommends a slightly different thickness if there are drainage issues, you have heavy machinery on your driveway, or you want an extra durable driveway.

After you agree on a thickness with a paving contractor, that thickness should be clearly listed in the estimate the contractor provides. Having it listed will ensure your home's driveway is paved to the agreed-upon specifications.

What Warranty Is Provided

Many paving contractors back up their work with a warranty. Any warranty a contractor provides should be listed with their estimate.

The warranty may not be included on the same paper as the estimate because estimates are customized for individual customers but warranties remain the same. A paper detailing the warranty that the work comes with should be given along with the estimate itself. In the warranty, you should find:

  • How long the materials used are under warranty for
  • How long the labor provided is under warranty for
  • What company backs the warranty

A warranty may be backed by a paving contractor, the manufacturer of the asphalt they use or a third-party company. Sometimes, different parts of a warranty will be backed by different companies. For instance, a paving contractor might cover labor while the asphalt they use may be covered by the manufacturer.

Whether There Are Factors That Will Affect the Price

Finally, the estimate should make clear whether the cost provided is a fixed estimate or could change. If it might change as the work is done, what factors could affect the price of the job should be outlined.

Contact a company like R Williams Paving LLC to start the paving estimate process today.

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