Resin driveways have become a very popular choice of driveway surface across the UK in recent years, and for good reason. They are highly durable, permeable, affordable and by far one of the easiest to maintain surfacing materials.
Besides these qualities, this driveway type can add a lot of aesthetic value to a property, elevating style and elegance as it comes in different patterns, offering a wide range of design options which can be creatively blended to give a uniquely stunning design.
There are many ways to make a driveway, but one of the most popular is to use a layer of resin. This substance can be spread out over the concrete surface and then smoothed out with a roller. It is important to not use too much resin because this will create problems with the concrete. If you want to add another layer of resin to your driveway, it's best to wait at least 48 hours before smoothing it out again.
There are different types of resin compounds - ranging from naturally occurring viscous plant compounds to artificially synthesized resins - including polyethylene resin, polyester resin, phenolic resin, polycarbonate resin, silicone resin, to name a few. However, generally, there are two major resin materials used by professionals for driveway installation. These include;
Epoxy Resin - Which isn’t very common today is made up of epoxides and characterized by strong adhesion properties, tough resistance to heat and chemicals. But unfortunately does not offer much in terms of load–bearing resistance.
Polyurethane Resin - Polyurethane resin on the other hand is more dominant and a top choice in the market. Some of its benefits include great bonding properties, and high resistance to heavy loads, abrasion and can withstand scuffing, chemical damage and more.
There are different types of resin that have different properties. The most common type of resin is uv stable resin and non-uv stable resin. Uv stable resin is the type that doesn't fade when exposed to sunlight, whereas non-uv stable resin does fade when exposed to sunlight.
Let’s distinguished between UV-stable vs Non-UV Stable Resin:
|UV stable resin||Non-UV stable resin|
|More expensive option than non-UV resin.||More cheaper option to buy than UV Stable resin|
|Can cure within minutes. Requires a UV lamp for curing which translates into more cost.||Takes longer time to cure by letting it sit for the required time and does not need UV light to cure.|
|Highly durable and not susceptible to cracking.||Prone to cracks and can become brittle in extremely hot temperatures|
|Resistant to moisture, cold and heat and does not change color||Highly unstable and can change colour under prolonged UV exposure.|
A resin driveways is a flexible and permeable surfacing material made of resin and aggregate stones, which makes it resistant to cracking. It is a premium, yet cost-effective alternative to concrete, block paving, loose gravel and tarmac.
Resin Bound: Resin bound is the best option for driveway installation. It usually involves coating the solids in polyurethane resin. The solids vary from aggregate, crushed marble, recycled plastic and lots more. The mixture lays on a firm base, creating a smooth upper surface.
The resin–bound mixture provides a rainwater permeable layer so puddles don’t form - which means drainage is never a problem. For resin bound driveways, the thickness of the layer varies depending on the size of aggregate, the type of stone used and whether you are making a driveway or resin patio etc. The resin covers all the solids, so there is not a chance of anything working loose.
Resin Bonded: The resin bonded has a layer of resin on a sub-surface. The solids are then scattered and pressed into the layer in order to cover the resin. Because the stone is on top of the resin, the stone is exposed and there is a chance it will work loose. The layer is non-permeable and is only one stone layer thick. In terms of cost, resin bonded is a cheaper option which may cost an average of £26 per m2 compared to resin bound driveways that cost £40 per m2.
The durability and versatility of resin surfaces makes them ideal for residential and commercial applications including:
Resin is a clear choice for many modern-day homeowners; with a wide range of colour options, low maintenance, and seamless finish, resin driveway is just what you need. Let us discuss a few more reasons why you install a resin bound driveway.
Durability and Longevity: Resin bound driveways can last for decades as a result of their durability and hardwearing property. When maintained adequately, they remain immaculate for more than 20 years. As long as the installation was done properly and the base solid, the driveway will not sink, cave in or swell.
Easy Installation: The installation of concrete or gravel can take days. Meanwhile, one of the best attributes of resin bound driveways is that they can be installed in under a few hours if you hire skilled and experienced professionals for the job.
Visual Appeal: This is another important factor for homeowners; while you always want quality, the aesthetic and decorative appeal is key. There are a wide range of patterns, colours, and textures that make it suitable for every property, no matter its style.
Crack and Frost Resistant: Another outstanding property of driveways made with resin is that they are frost resistant which make them able to withstand several freeze/thaw cycles without being damaged nor weak.
Furthermore, resin driveways have an open matrix which makes the surface porous and promotes easy absorption of water and drainage thus avoiding flooding. This porous ability of resin bound surfaces also helps to greatly reduce the damaging action of freeze/thaw cycles.
Permeability: The installation of resin bond driveways involves a process that ensures every stone particle is covered in resin. This process also creates small voids which allows rainwater to get through to the natural ground. With a permeable resin driveway, you do not have to worry about your driveway getting waterlogged.
Planning Permission is not Required: Resin bound driveways satisfy the requirements of sustainable urban drainage systems (SUDs) and are designed to help prevent the threat of flooding. As a result, the government allows homeowners who have chosen to install resin driveways to go ahead without seeking planning permission.
|Property||Resin Bound Driveway||Tarmac||Concrete||Block paving|
|Ease of maintenance||Yes||Yes||No||Yes|
This is a very important part of the entire project. Any mistake made at this point will jeopardize the success and durability of the driveway. Therefore, extra care must be taken to avoid having an irregular base which increases the likelihood of swelling, caving in or cracking of the driveway over time.
Here are some of the activities that comes under preparation of base:
Remove existing surface if it is not suitable to carry new driveway
Fixing of cracks or infills of existing base
Evacuate the intended driveway area to a depth of 220mm.
Install perimeter edging for the driveway
Lay the hardcore base at a minimum depth of 150mm. Ideally, a MoT type 3 base layer is recommended.
Lay the sand bedding layer and then lay a solid base.
The following are recommended depth for the different types of solid base:
Tarmac – more than 50mm depth
Concrete – more than 80mm depth
For the X-Grid- fill the grid with chippings not more than 20 mm in diameter. To know how much gravel you need for the job, multiply the installation area by 72.
Ensure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions on how to mix the resin and aggregates. It is very important to get the ratio of aggregate to resin in the right proportion, as too little resin will lead to a weak and chewy surface and too much resin will cause white stains.
To combine the mixed resin with the aggregates, you need a Forced Action Mixer.
Carry the mix to the installation area and then use a trowel to spread the mix evenly on the driveway surface.
Allow the setup to cure thereafter. The mixture will take about 4 hours at 20oC to cure. You may also add an accelerator in the resin mix to hasten the curing process
Maintaining a resin bound driveway is not difficult. When installed properly, there will hardly be any growth of weeds on the surface. You also do not have to worry about shoveling stones back onto the driveway since the aggregate stones used are bound to the resin.
With a stiff brush, you can easily clean the surface while an occasional jet wash (twice a year) is also recommended to keep your driveway in top condition.
If you are considering a new surfacing or driveway for your home and would like to work with contractors, we can help. We work with trusted external resin contractors, who have the skills and experience when it comes to driveway installation - including resin pathways and resin patios. We cover London, Leeds and Manchester Area.
Feel free to call us today on our helplines 08082737505 to request a free quote or sign up for your next driveway project.
Weed killers are used to treat resin before the driveway is installed, so weeds will not grow through the surface. However, due to animal droppings or the weather, seedlings may grow on the surface. If this happens, you can use a diluted weed killer or remove the weed from its root by hand.
A resin bound driveway takes about 4 hours at 20oC to completely cure. This curing time can however be reduced by the addition of an accelerator.
After installation, resin surfaces are typically ready to use within 6-12 hours. However, we recommend that you avoid driving on the surface for a minimum of 24 hours after installation.
Generally, a resin surface does not need much after care. A resin bound driveway for instance, needs only a stiff brush to get rid of dirt and any weed that must have found its way onto the surface.
Occasionally, a power wash (jet wash) is also necessary to keep the driveway in good condition.
Yes. Small parts of a resin bound surface can be repaired if it becomes damaged. The damaged area can be chiseled out using an aggregate mix, like the original.