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Thread: Crushed concrete vs limestone for driveway

  1. #1
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    Crushed concrete vs limestone for driveway

    Hi all.
    My 500 foot long driveway needs some work prior to winter. It has previously been covered with larger (probably 1" or 1 1/2") limestone which I hate. It doesn't smooth out well and with our drive having a couple of curves, the car tires tend to kick these larger rocks out the the edge.
    I believe the answer is smaller material. Our old place had smaller rock chips which were packed tightly and didn't move around much. I have found two local suppliers that can provide 3/4- minus material. One place does limestone, the other crushed concrete. The crushed concrete will run my about $5/ton less. With an estimated need of 45-50 tons, thats a pretty significant savings.
    I have a double drum roller which I plan to use to pack the new material into the existing drive to help smooth it and form a solid base.
    Does anyone have experience with the crushed concrete? Will that do what I want?

    Thanks!

  2. #2
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    Imca, i have no experience in Limestone but do with Concrete. It has been my experience with the concrete when crushed down to 3/4 inch tends to accept moisture very easily. Once this moisture soak's in it starts to degrade the concrete.
    After a good soaking rain you can see a yellow stream of water running away from the material.

    After about two years in place you can definatly see the degregation. I also wonder about the downstream runoff. It can't be good for the environment. Just my opinion. Gramps.
    I treat everybody the same...... I give em all grief.

  3. #3
    Super Moderator CM1995's Avatar
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    Well I don't have any experience with crushed concrete since I live in the land of abundant limestone, where there is a quarry on every corner it seems like.

    Another thing to consider is the cleanliness of the material. The limestone is a virgin product and will be clean. What I have read about using recycled concrete is how clean does the supplier get it. Bits of plastics from vapor barriers, rebar, wire, etc can all find their into the finished product - or at least that's what the C&D recycling magazines say.

    I would go with limestone since you are only using 50 tons and there is only a $5 difference per ton. That's just 2 tri-axles around these parts,
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  4. #4
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    Both products have their upside, both have their downside.

    Depending on your recylcer, you can have a dirty product, full of wood and steel in most cases. Around here some of the crushers will accept any concrete, some will not take demo concrete. The guys that wont take any concrete from building demolition usually have a much cleaner product. You will always have some iron in the crushed concrete. The very nature of crushed concrete will allow some weather degradation. It tends to have a bunch of air space in the "stones." This does have the possibility to collect water, and then freeze, breaking the material down. This very downside leads to a big upside when it comes coverage. There is more volume in a cubic yard of crushed concrete than there is of a ton of limestone. You will experience more coverage and a little more cost savings. We have used crushed concrete for a long time in MI. It is a good product, and used the right applications it works well. A while ago MDOT stopped allowing crushed brick mixed in with the crushed concrete. Since a lot brick is clay, it does not help on the freezing end of things.

    Limestone is a good product, if you have deep pockets. It tends to be rather expensive in my area, as we have none around. You have to go a long ways to get ahold of stone. Chances are, when you get to the stone, it has already traveled 200 miles.

    I to am in your shoes. I am getting ready to do some driveway work around my place. A large chunk of which will have a concrete drive poured on it eventually. At the end of the planned pour, I will end up needing more stone for another section of drive. So my plan is as follows. I will put down 6 inches of crushed concrete. Grade and compact that. This will provide a good base. Then I will cap that with 4-6 inches of limestone. This will help protect the crushed concrete from surface water, and with a little bit of drain tile, I can keep water away from underneath. The limestone will cap the steel tire wreckers that cant be avoided with crushed concrete. Lastly, this gives me the material I need for the next section of drive. Push the limestone off, use it to build the next section, and pour concrete on all of it.

  5. #5
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    I have used recycled crushed concrete with great results on small driveways with great results.Sure,there's some ''foreign material'',such as an occasional piece of rebar or a blacktop piece but big deal,it will all be fine.By me the aggregate is limestone,so when it goes through a few wet/dry cycles,it starts looking like well-- concrete.
    Just remember when the old lady laughs at your expense for trying to sell what she thinks is a worthless piece of garbage"There is an a** for every toilet seat ever made"
    Formerly Skull-Finder-{found the skull to the famous mastodon in Hyde Park,NY in 2000

  6. #6
    Member deerefan's Avatar
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    I have experience using both, I would suggest either using 1/2 minus crushed limestone, or milled (recycled) asphalt. I would lay down 4 to 6 inches of either and then compact, both will pack very nice however imo limestone looks a little more high end

  7. #7
    Senior Member heavylift's Avatar
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    crushed concrete = flat tires

    wire and such... depends on the plant... also may get a lot of dirt...

    one here has a asphalt and concrete mix now... so now they have three low quaility product... bad ... more bad and more worse than the baddest

  8. #8
    Senior Member diggerdave1958's Avatar
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    Well where i live in Michigan we have both avaible Limestone and crushed concrete i use them both on a new driveway i would use about 4-6" of crushed concrete and top with 2" of 22A limestone and always use limestone to top gravel driveways. I like crushed concrete for a base as long as it topped with limestone and there is always problems with the wire in the crushed concrete. There is also some crushed Asphalt around but it is kinda pricey and very limited in the amounts they have.

  9. #9
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    i have only found one supplier that sells a good quality crush concrete. the rest of the crushed concrete is junk, it will not lock together when rolled, water turns it into soup, and takes for ever to dry out. i would vote for the lime stone. my question is how thick do you plan on putting it in at? i would recomend 2 to 3 inches thick. this alows it to bond together and stay. our driveway is about the same lenght and i averaged 3 inches and used about 100 tons. it took me two years to do it. the driveway has not moved in two years just a few small pot holes are showing up and i plan on filling them soon. with a job in paving i have an idea what works and what dosen't

  10. #10
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    Thanks for all of the replies!

    In the end, I decided to spring for the limestone. Per the recommendation of the supplier, I went with 3/4" minus. This is somewhat smaller thatn the material that I used to have on the drive. I initially told him I figured I'd need 3 straight truck loads (15-17 tons per load).
    Much to my amazement, he covered the entire drive with the first load. He brought a second load and basically covered everything about 3" deep and I have a small stockpile left over. We hit it for a couple of hours with my double drum roller, but we really need a little moisture now to help work it in for the winter.
    It was a pleasant surprise that we got by with 34 tons vs 48-50 tons.

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