Stamped concrete is often considered as an alternative to concrete pavers as a method of laying hardscapes, such as walkways, patios, and driveways in Saratoga, NY. It’s more ornate than poured concrete as textures, shapes, and details are embossed into its surface onsite; however the installation method is basically the same as it starts off with a poured concrete base. As with poured concrete, stamped concrete has a number of drawbacks that fail to live up to the high standards of aesthetic, durability and strength of Unilock concrete pavers. Let’s see how the two compare.
Stamped concrete driveways may be slightly cheaper initially than concrete pavers; however, the lack of longevity and the tendency of the stamped concrete to require repair and replacement eliminates these savings in the mid to long term. Not only is the price difference small, over time, labor intensive repair or complete replacement must be done with stamped concrete.
Repair and Maintenance
While stamped concrete gives the impression of individual pieces, each piece is part of a single poured concrete surface. As such, individual pieces can’t be replaced, whereas concrete pavers can be replaced individually – saving vast amounts of time and money. Stamped concrete requires patching of cracks and divots, and such repairs are inevitably noticeable.
The Time Factor
Stamped concrete is installed relatively quickly; however, it requires a lengthy cure time of several days. While concrete pavers may take slightly more time on the front end, the back end is non-existent. Your driveway will be functional immediately. Moreover, the time of installation directly depends on the expertise of the installer. Choose a Unilock Authorized Contractor to go with your Unilock materials for a quick, efficient, and convenient installation that will last for ages in comparison to stamped concrete.
The most commonly cited draw factor to stamped concrete is its customizability. While this is true, the wonder of Unilock is the quantity and quality of options. Concrete pavers vary in style, size, and color, making individualizing your custom driveway easy. Whether you prefer a colonial or traditional style inspired by brick, a contemporary aesthetic that embraces lines and ninety-degree angles, or a natural look that is reminiscent of flagstone, Unilock offers multiple options that include Town Hall, Artline, and Richcliff, respectively, among many other options. With a variety of colors and sizes, various layouts are encouraged, including patterns, accents, and borders. With concrete pavers, an incredible degree of complexity and creativity is possible.
The title image features a driveway paved with Town Hall pavers from Unilock.
Aesthetic and Functional Longevity
Knowing that your driveway investment will remain intact for years to come is another concern. Unfortunately, with stamped concrete, one crack can ruin the entire unit. You’ll be forced to replace the entire construction or make do with a visible repair; however, concrete pavers have a high degree of flexural strength – up to four times the strength of poured concrete – meaning that they withstand expansion and contraction, offer low porosity, and can be replaced with individual units rather than as a whole. Unilock concrete pavers are also treated to resist stains and any loss of color despite exposure to the elements. Concrete pavers therefore offer a long-lasting aesthetic and functionality that is simply not possible with stamped concrete.