How Much Does A Concrete Driveway Cost In Northern Colorado?
Do you want to add a new concrete driveway, or replace an existing driveway in Fort Collins and the surrounding areas? As you research your driveway options you might be asking questions to yourself like:
How much does replacing my driveway cost?
What differences are there with concrete driveway installation contractors and prep work and what are the cost differences?
What maintenance costs are associated with a new driveway?
As a concrete driveway installer that has installed over 500 driveways in the Northern Colorado area, we want to help the community with learning about all the costs and things to know about when deciding whether or not to get a new driveway.
In this article, we will outline the costs associated with concrete driveway pours and replacements, as well as what you need to know to make sure you only have to do this project once.
How Much Does Replacing A Driveway Cost in Windsor and The Surrounding Areas?
In Northern Colorado, a new driveway may cost anywhere between $3,000 and $50,000. That is a large range, but below we will help break this down into what factors determine driveway prices.
- Size– This is the most impactful thing to consider when researching your driveway costs. The concrete industry typically uses what we call cost per square foot. Square foot can be found by multiplying the length and width of your driveway. For smaller driveways (under 600 square foot), a typical range in cost per square foot is between $10 and $13. For larger driveways (Over 600 square feet), a typical cost per square foot is between $8 and $11 per square foot.
- Prep work – Although perp work has a little less to do with costs when building a new driveway, it has everything to do with how long your driveway will last you. If prep work is done correctly, your concrete driveway’s life can be extended up to 2-3 times what it would have been without proper prep. Things that will add to the cost of the driveway, but are well worth it, are things like a strong base, proper compaction, and steel reinforcement. Also if you are replacing a driveway, the cost to remove your existing driveway will be factored in to the cost per square foot. The more prep work you do, the more your total investment will go up, but you may decide that it will be worth it.
- Design – The design is the last thing that will impact your driveway installation cost. One of the first things people notice about your home is the driveway. How do you want it to be perceived? Simple and clean, slight decoration, colored, or even going decorative with stamped concrete (For stamped concrete driveway pricing, please click here). The most common upgrades are adding smooth borders on the sides of your driveway, and changing the control joint patters.
With all that being said, a standard driveway in Northern Colorado (between 600-800 square feet), typically costs between $6,000 and $7,200 on average.
To Get A Customized Quote For Your Driveway, CLICK HERE.
What Are The Differences With Concrete Driveway Installation Prep and Contractors, And What Are The Costs And Benefits Associated?
When it comes to shopping for a new driveway, it can be very intimidating. Most homeowners will only replace a driveway of 1-2 times in their life. This can be a big decision, and there is a lot of information to consider. This section of the article will teach you about the differences in driveways that are built around Loveland and the surrounding areas, and their associated costs and benefits.
- Prep Work – This was mentioned above, but let’s break down the associated costs and benefits of each facet of prep work involved with installing a new concrete driveway.
- Proper Base – Northern Colorado has a wide range of natural soil conditions. To keep it simple, there are a LOT of different soils and they can all have different affects on concrete and how long your new driveway will last. Certain soils are very prone to getting bigger and expanding in the winter because of freezing, or moving over time. Certain soils are compactable and provide a lot of support for concrete, and others don’t. As you can imagine this will have a big impact on well your driveway lasts in the long run. The solution to this problem is by replacing a anywhere from 1-6″ of soil with a compactable base like recycled concrete or roadbase. This is the most important factor for longevity of your new driveway. A Proper base can increase the cost invested per square foot by 1-$3, but if you want your driveway to stay in better shape for longer, this can be looked at as a great investment.
- Concrete Reinforcement – Concrete is one of the most durable building materials that our society uses. However, once concrete cracks there is little you can do to hold everything together. That is where reinforcement comes in. Not only does reinforcement aid in the overall strength of your new driveway, but it also will keep everything together over the long run. If your driveway does get a crack, your reinforcement is designed to not allow separate sections of your driveway to start pulling apart, creating tripping hazards that can also not be very appealing. The best reinforcing options out there range from rebar, wire mesh, and fiber. Costs can range between $.5-$2.00 depending on what type and amount you’d like to use.
- Concrete Depth and Strength Of Concrete Used (PSI Rating) – Most concrete driveways installed in the Northern Colorado area, are done with 4″ depth. In most scenarios this is more than strong enough, but if you plan on parking heavy equipment on your driveway you may want to consider going with thicker concrete. For this it is best to consult your concrete contractor or ready mix supplier on what is best for your scenario. We recommend Loveland Ready Mix if you want to order concrete without the help of a concrete contractor.
- Craftsmanship – Like any other trade, there are contractors who know what they are doing, and others that don’t. The range of quality in concrete contractors in Northern Colorado is very wide. Unlike most building materials that are pre-made like wood, steel, drywall, etc, concrete is a chemical reaction that is done on the job. Because of this concrete has a very limited time (2-5 hours) of working time before things are literally set in stone. The level of expertise and craftsmanship will have an affect on the total investment in your end product. Some contractors will try and cut costs by nor bringing as many highly skilled employees to each jobsite, and the end product may not be as good. It is best to ask hard questions to your concrete contractor to get a feel on how they view this issue. Researching reviews to see if they are reputable is well worth any consumers time, and knowing that certain contractors may be more expensive, does not always mean that is a bad thing
- Service Of The Contractor – Each contractor you work with, will have a different way of running their business. When comparing quotes, you may want to ask your concrete driveway contractor about their policies regarding service. What is their warranty policy? How long have they been in business, and if I need them in the future will they still be around? If I call or email, how long will it take me to hear back? Do I enjoy speaking with and interacting with the company? These are all great questions to consider and each driveway contractor will have different levels of service and because of that some will be cheaper and others will be more expensive.
What Are The Maintenance Costs With A Concrete Driveway?
Some of the maintenance costs you need to consider when installing a concrete driveway are:
- Maintenance sealer
- Caulking cracks
Sealer – The concrete needs to be cleaned with a power washer, and then sealer can be applied with a disposably sprayer or a roller. It is best to seal your new concrete driveway after about 30 days, and then re-seal every 2 years depending on the weather and tear of your concrete. For people who hire a contractor, the cost is roughly $600-$1,000 depending on the size of your driveway. For DIYers who feel comfortable with doing this, the cost is about $250-$500.
- Keeps the top layer of your concrete looking like new
- Adds extra stain resistance
- Protects from harmful roadside chemicals used for de-icing
- Seals smaller hairline concrete cracks
Caulking cracks – Even the best concrete work can crack, and in Colorado concrete is almost guaranteed to crack. Hairline cracks do not need caulking, but if a crack starts to open up it is best to use caulking to keep the area water tight. Have a pro do this will run around $200-$500 per service visit. DIYers can do this for as little as $100.
- Keeps cracks water tight
- In-expensive way to preserve concrete in the long run
Concrete Driveway Examples and Costs
Large concrete driveway with a smooth border design. Replaced existing driveway and made larger. Installed new concrete base and rebar reinforcement. Square footage 1200.
Total Investment Cost – $10,000
Colored concrete driveway with a sealer applied. Replaced existing driveway, added new base, added rebar reinforcement. Square footage – 900
Total Investment Cost – $8,900
Wrap Around Concrete Driveway Installation. New build home with no existing concrete removal. Rebar reinforcement. Square footage 3500
Total Investment – $22,750