Concrete Driveways – Do’s and Don’ts of the Exposed Aggregate Look

Ian Mutuli
Updated on
Ian Mutuli

Ian Mutuli

Founder and Managing Editor of Archute. He is also a graduate architect from The University of Nairobi, Kenya.
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When you are choosing between driveway materials, there are several things to consider. The sturdiness and looks are two of the most essential features. You want to be sure the driveway is appealing but will also last a long time.

You might think that you can’t get both durability and aesthetic simultaneously, but that isn’t true. Exposed aggregate offers a beautiful finish that has serious durability. In addition, it can handle harsh conditions and make your home more appealing.

Exposed aggregate is a finish where the top layer is removed to expose the stone and sand underneath. Chemical retardants or a water washing technique are used on the surface.

If you want a gorgeous driveway that lasts, this is the perfect option. However, there are some dos and don’ts that you should be aware of first.

Locations to Use Exposed Aggregate

This material can be used inside and out in both commercial and residential locations. It can be used on al frescos, pathways, pool areas, driveways, and more. Each of these spaces requires excellent performance and striking looks. It’s better to choose aggregate over flooring options that don’t have the same benefits.

There are a few things to be aware of with this material when it comes to parking areas and driveways. First, you want driveways to be highly durable since they will often be used on a regular or even constant basis. Second, floors need to handle the weight of the vehicles parked on them.

Sure, there are many options for driveway flooring, but exposed aggregate is one of the best options. It’s durable, simple to maintain, and doesn’t become slippery to cause accidents and injuries.

Do Expect Great Aesthetics

Think driveways are cold, grey, and dull? That isn’t the case when you use exposed aggregate. You can choose a variety of designs with an array of colours, looks, and textures. Even the shape can be altered based on your preferences.

Even when using identical mixes, you can choose different finishes. That means you could use a polished surface in one area and then swap over to an outdoor finish that is more rugged for lousy weather.

Don’t Think You Can Choose at Random

Some types of aggregate can become damaged quickly. This is especially the case when you use decorative stones. These are liable to break in only a few years since there is consistent and heavy traffic.

When you choose this material for your driveway, make sure you invest in a high-quality version. This makes it less likely that damage will occur from feet and vehicles.

Do Enjoy the Extra Durability

To be cost-effective, you want material that lasts. This makes it worth what was paid for it. Exposed aggregate is highly durable and can last years with minimal maintenance. Unfortunately, this isn’t the case for other types of driveway materials.

You can expect a performance that lasts a lifetime. When you compare it to stone pavers, the exposed aggregate is easier to maintain and less prone to damage.

Do Expect to Save Money

Since there’s little maintenance associated with this kind of driveway, you can save money even after paying for professional installation. Exposed aggregate doesn’t have grout so that it won’t become discoloured. You also don’t need to worry about weeds, gaps, and erosion.

Since no tiles are cut, it’s easy to fit the driveway into any space. In addition, it requires less work so you pay less money to enjoy it at your home.

Don’t Install on Your Own

Unless you have a background in concrete, you shouldn’t attempt to install a driveway on your own. You should always choose a professional who can handle the work. The person you choose should be experienced and aware of Australian Standards to ensure the best results.

Having anyone come in to install the exposed aggregate driveway can lead to a bad job and the need to have repairs done. In the first case, it might need to be taken out and reinstalled completed.

You can avoid this issue by bringing in an exposed aggregate expert like Seamless Concrete. Make sure you check up on their qualifications before you sign a contract. You’ll get a beautiful driveway that you can use as long as you stay at your current home.


Concrete driveways are a durable and visually appealing option for both residential and commercial properties. The exposed aggregate look adds texture and interest to the surface, but it's important to follow the do's and don'ts of installation and maintenance to ensure longevity and prevent damage. Even though, asphalt commercial driveway may be a cheaper alternative, it doesn't provide the same level of customization and longevity as concrete. Ultimately, with proper care and attention, a concrete driveway with an exposed aggregate look can be a valuable investment for any property.

Ian Mutuli

About the author

Ian Mutuli

Founder and Managing Editor of Archute. He is also a graduate architect from The University of Nairobi, Kenya.
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