How to Estimate Your Asphalt Projects

Estimating the Costs of Installing Asphalt

Asphalt installation projects is one of the most cost-effective options for your driveway. The national average price to replace an old road for a new one ranges anywhere from around $2,500 to $6,000, depending on the length and timeline of installation. While that may seem expensive, the cost is actually much cheaper than concrete. (Yet, there are plenty of pros and cons to both. Explore our other blog, “The Great Debate: Should You Get an Asphalt or Concrete Driveway?”)

However, that price range is just an average that could fluctuate based on many factors. In this blog, we are going to break down everything that goes into the cost of constructing a typical asphalt driveway. You should always try to estimate yourself before blinding trusting a contractor to bill you for the project. Don’t let yourself get taken advantage of by any so-called “experts”. Knowing is half the battle!

Comparing Costs of DIY Asphalt Installation vs. Professional Asphalt Services in Frederick

First, you don’t have to hire any contractor. If you have the right tools and free time, you can pursue a DIY model. However, we have to caution that this venture is not for everyone. You need a specific set of tools, particularly a roller machine. Depending on the size and scope of the project, you will need to invest a significant amount of energy. Avoid overconfidence and play it safe! By operating complex machinery and dangerous chemicals, you can harm yourself and damage your property.

5 Determining Factors of DIY Asphalt Jobs You Need to Know

1 – Cost-Benefits Analyze

Before you decide to install or replace a driveway, ask yourself the following question: Is it more cost-effective to do it yourself? The scope and type of project you’re undertaking will largely determine whether it’s really worth it. Take some time and list out all the possible expenses over time you’d incur from a DIY approach. You might need to purchase, rent, or borrow materials and tools for the job. Then think about how long it might take by yourself. If the project runs into the winter months, the snow might ruin the installation process.

2 – Special License

Depending on the location, some projects may also require permits for individuals to lay asphalt and a license to operate rollers. It’s a good idea to ask your local municipality regarding any special needs before you make a final decision. The costs of training and taking specific tests to obtain a license and certification is another factor that you should consider in any DIY model.

3 – Special Equipment

Paving an asphalt driveway or a parking lot is no simple task. You’ll need some experience with a range of different tools, some of which will be quite expensive. Then, of course, you’ll need some training in operating all of them safely. You’ll probably want to rent the large paver machines if it’s just a one-time project. If you have several projects lined up on many properties, you could consider buying one.

4 – TImeline for Completion

Typically, for contractor work you need to go through a lot of paperwork in signing contracts. If you don’t want to be tied down in red tape, you might be able to complete the project faster by yourself. Contractor work during business hours throughout workdays. However, as your own DIY manager, you can set your schedule to work whenever you want! Your time is valuable, and you should schedule out every hour of work to make the best use of it.

5 – Commercial vs. Residential Projects

Next, you need to consider the type of project you’re looking to complete, whether commercial or residential. Installing an asphalt project in either your business lot or home driveway each have issues that may affect costs. For example, if you are installing new pavement for the parking lot around your business, you’ll likely have to fewer customers coming in because of less space to park. You might require different permits depending on the purpose of the project. And, if you opt for a DIY model, you would be directly overseeing and participating in the work, not managing your company office.

Calculating the Cost of Asphalt Construction in Frederick MD

Measure Twice Pave Once!

If you want to determine the amount of asphalt you will need for your project, you will need to scope out and measure the area. This is the fun part involving math! You’ll need to apply some basic formulas for area depending on the shape of the project. Some might be straightforward rectangles or half circles, other more complex.

After you measured a rough estimate of the square feet of surface area, you’ll need to research how much tonnage of asphalt will cover the project.
Here’s a simple guide for one ton of asphalt:

  • ½” deep = 1023 Sq ft
  • 1” deep = 517 Sq ft
  • 2” deep = 258 Sq ft
  • 4” deep = 129 Sq ft

Now you can calculate a total estimate of cost by using the price of asphalt per square foot. And, to do that, of course, we need to know the average market price of a ton asphalt.

What’s a Ton Worth?

The exact price of asphalt fluctuates with the market. The Maryland Asphalt Association records a history of data on rates by tonnage in their Asphalt Index. Currently, they estimate the costs at around $398.33 per ton.

You’ll probably want an easy breakdown of that number for reference. Several websites around the web, such as ProMatcher, provide you free estimates for residential driveway installations by the square foot. According to them, the price comes down to around $10.00 per square foot for resurfacing. To tear out and install new asphalt costs about $7.01 per square foot. Then, sealing cost about $0.40 per square foot.

Regardless of the dimensions, if you want to achieve a fully functional and aesthetically pleasing asphalt driveway or a parking lot, leave it to professionals at Limitless Concrete & Paving. The proper installation of asphalt requires experience, specialized equipment, and general expertise. Driveway or a parking lot receives a lot of traffic, requiring them to be durable and last decades.

To get a free, no-obligation paving quote, call us at (301) 327-2226 today!

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