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The Georgetown Square, downtown Georgetown

GEORGETOWN GRAVEL DRIVEWAY & ROAD INSTALLATION

Havlick Services specializes in gravel driveway, road, and parking lot installation and repair in Georgetown, TX and the surrounding cities. We take pride in building durable, long-lasting surfaces at competitive prices tailored to meet our clients’ individual needs.

THE  INSTALLATION PROCESS 

1. Organic material, large rocks, brush, and topsoil are removed within the driveway path. Topsoil does not provide a stable base for vehicles, especially when wet so ideally as much is removed as possible.

A skid steer removing grass along a path that will be used to build a gravel driveway

2. The subgrade is compacted with a vibratory roller and optional geotextile fabric is laid down over the subgrade. Geotextile fabric helps create a more stable base and stop the permeation of the materials above from sinking down into the soil. 

A Vibratory roller compacting road base for a gravel driveway

3. Limestone road base is laid approximately 4-6" thick depending on vehicle traffic weight. That layer is then compacted extensively with a vibratory roller. Water is added depending on the moisture level of the road base to help achieve a higher level of compaction.

A compacted road base driveway

4. A cosmetic layer of stone is then laid over the road base layer which increases the life span of the driveway by creating a wear layer. It also aids in drainage, reduces dust, and is more cosmetically appealing. 

A skid steer sprinkling a thin layer of limestone to build a gravel driveway

Top Mistakes to Avoid with Gravel Driveway Construction

1. A Poorly Constructed Base- 

  • A well-constructed gravel driveway, road, or parking lot hinges on a solid base layer, ideally at least 4-6 inches deep, made of compacted road base. This layer should rest on stable, native ground devoid of organic matter such as top soil to ensure durability. Geo-textile fabric can be used in areas that have thick layers of top soil or unstable soils to create a more stable base. This fabric acts as a barrier, preventing the mixing of soil with the gravel, and spreading the load onto a wider surface area thus maintaining the integrity and longevity of the driveway.  

2. Poor Drainage -

  • Inadequate drainage, often due to a lack of proper slope or crown, is a common issue that decreases the lifespan of a gravel surface. Effective drainage is achieved by slightly sloping the surface, which directs water away, preventing pooling and erosion. Proper sloping, combined with well-compacted base layers, ensures a stable structure that efficiently manages water, preserving the integrity and extending the lifespan of the gravel surface. 

3.  The Wrong Stone- 

  • Using the wrong gravel type or size can significantly shorten a driveway or road lifespan and performance. Angular stones of varying sizes from 1”-1/4” are ideal, as they lock together, creating a stable surface. Smooth aggregates like pea gravel or river rock, which lack angular edges, fail to interlock, leading to shifting and an unstable surface. Moreover, if the aggregate is too small, it becomes prone to erosion from rain and may be less durable under heavy loads.

4.  Inadequate Thickness- 

  • The thickness of the base material and top layer of aggregate significantly impacts durability. A robust driveway or road typically requires a minimum depth of 4-6 inches once compacted to accommodate light vehicles. Heavy vehicles such as trucks require a thicker base depending on weight. When evaluating contractors, it's important to ask about the proposed final thickness of the driveway or road. Effective compaction can reduce the initial thickness by about one-third drastically reducing the final thickness of the surface.

HOW DOES GEOTEXTILE FABRIC WORK?

Woven geotextile fabrics (not to be confused with weed control fabric) are high strength, synthetic textiles that are placed in between the subgrade and base layers of a road or driveway that sits on soft or fine-grained soils. The high tensile strength of geo-textiles allows the load placed upon it to be distributed across a larger area. This characteristic works similar to how a snowshoe would allow a person to walk across soft snow without sinking in. Geotextiles also stop the permeation or "mixing" of the driveway materials with the soil. Typically, the additional cost of geo-textile fabric outweighs the cost of excavating and removing soft soils or increasing the thickness of the base material layer. 

A diagram that compares how geotextile fabric prevents un even settling of stone aggregates with vehicle traffic on a gravel driveway
A gravel driveway layer diagram
A gravel driveway with green grass on each side
    • The main advantage to building a gravel driveway in comparison to a concrete driveway is cost. Limestone gravel driveways in Georgetown, Texas range in cost from $1.50-2.50 per sq ft depending on aggregate type, thickness, and preparations needs. In comparison, a concrete driveway can cost $5-8 per sq ft.

    • Gravel driveways are relatively easy to install and can be customized in terms of cost, size and shape. 

  • In Georgetown the average total cost for a new limestone gravel driveway can range from $1.25-2.50 per sq ft. Repairs or resurfacing of an existing driveway are significantly cheaper and can range from $.50-$1.00 per sq ft. 

  • Utilizing geotextile fabric is the simplest option available to ensure the driveway remains stable over time. Geotextiles can be omitted on driveways where settling or potholes occurring over time isn't a concern to the property owner, or in areas of Georgetown (West of I-35) that have limestone directly under a thin top soil layer. In these instances the top soil layer can be removed, eliminating the unstable soil and the need for geotextile fabric. The driveway can then be built on the stable limestone or caliche.

  •  The most effective approach to prevent potholes involves the proper construction of a stable and compacted base layer. Constructing a strong base layer includes many components such as removing unstable top soil, utilizing geotextile fabric, and properly compacting each layer.  Potholes often emerge when the gravel used in the driveway construction sinks into poorly compacted soil beneath, or loose materials become dislodged due to traffic. The subsequent formation of low spots leads to water pooling, further exacerbating the problem. 

  • When it comes to building a gravel driveway, determining the appropriate width and thickness is crucial for ensuring a durable and functional driveway. Various factors need to be taken into account, such as vehicle size, the need for two-way traffic, vehicle trailer usage, trailer length and turn radius, as well as vehicle weight. On average most driveways are 10-12' wide and built to withstand a standard passenger car weight. Driveways that must withstand heavy trucks require thicker base layers or may require the installation of geotextile fabric to reduce the settling of the driveway under heavy loads.

FREQUENTLY ASKED

QUESTIONS

SERVICE AREA 

  • Lakeway 

  • Leander 

  • Pflugerville 

  • Round Rock 

  • Shady Hallow 

  • Taylor 

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