A paver driveway is made from blocks of bricks or stone in a pattern. This technique can create a unique driveway that resembles a cobblestone or interlocked brick street. The strength of this type of driveway depends mainly on the base preparation of gravel and sand, correct installation, and material used.
Quite likely, the most significant portion of the paver driveway expense, beyond labor, is the preparation, which will include a substantial amount of labor as well. This is, of course, dependent on the soil condition where you will place the driveway.
Tearing out an old driveway, removing trees, boulders, and landscaping will increase your labor costs accordingly.
To discover how much paver base you need for your driveway, check our paver base calculator For a standard two vehicle paver driveway we will use sixteen feet width by 40-foot length, or 640 square feet. If you only want room for one car, change the width to eight or ten feet. The same is true for a shorter driveway.
Use the formula width x length to come up with the square footage needed. It’s almost the same as the base calculator, except the depth of the paver bricks are standard. However, you will need to calculate the pattern layout to avoid waste.
Depending on your pattern, you might want to consider ordering 10-15 percent more pavers than the 640, say 700 sq. ft. However, be careful ordering too much overage, especially with cobblestone if the dealer will not accept returns. At $35 – $70/ sq. ft., that overage could cost $2,100 – $4,200.
Concrete pavers cost about $15 – $20/sq. ft., brick pavers about $15 – $30/sq. ft., and as mentioned, cobblestone $35 – $70. You can safely consider 200 man-hours for labor depending on the level of experience of the workers. Usually, the contractor will charge a flat fee for labor.
Therefore, a ballpark figure for concrete pavers would be $12,800, brick pavers, $19,200, and cobblestone around $40,000.
After all the trees, boulders, and landscaping are out of the way, and the area is leveled, allowing for a gentle pitch for rain run-off, if desired. It is not usually necessary since water will drain down through the spaces and gravel.
Once you or your contractor have gathered the materials and equipment, you will need to lay the gravel base, place your plastic or metal edge, level or even out the gravel base, add an inch or two of sand evenly, lay the pavers, fill the spaces, and seal the surface if desired. The steps are about the same as for a patio, so check our paver cost planner.
Other Driveway Types
There are several different types of driveways you might want to consider as an alternative to a paver driveway.
A gravel driveway can work just as well for you as a brick paver at thousands less. For our 16’ x 40’ x 8” gravel driveway, you can figure about 163 yards of gravel or 22 tons. The low figure for pea gravel is $35 per metric ton, so about $775 – $800. Then, you will need to add equipment rental, man-hours, and preparation. Use our gravel driveway calculator to estimate costs.
An asphalt driveway is a great-looking alternative and will last for years when sealed and maintained. You can use our convenient asphalt driveway calculator to determine how much it will cost. The average is about $3 – $6/sq. ft. without the base or sealer added. Therefore, our 16’ x 40’ driveway is about $5,000.
Concrete driveways look better and stay cooler than asphalt in areas with scorching temperatures. The drawback is that concrete will show every oil or grease stain, although proper sealing will lessen the effect and make it easier to clean with a pressure washer. You can use our concrete driveway calculator to approximate the cost.
Stamped concrete typically costs twice as much as plain concrete. However, if you had your heart set on a paver driveway and couldn’t afford it, stamped concrete can be made to mimic paver brick for possibly half the price. Although stamped concrete is not as durable as pavers, the price difference could make it worthwhile, especially when you add a thicker base of gravel.
The stamped concrete is rated at 9K psi, while the brick pavers are rated at 12K. Therefore, either is capable of supporting even a large SUV, which generally weighs around 4,800 pounds. Stamped concrete will cost about $10 – $16/sq. ft., so our 640 sq. ft. driveway is about $6,400-10,500.
Get Estimates for Your Paver Driveway
After you have developed your driveway plans, it’s time to get some estimates. You should get three estimates from reputable driveway pavers in your area and ask them to include two or three options. That way, if you change your mind about a method you already have the price for the others. Good luck and enjoy your driveway.