Concrete or Asphalt? Which Is the Superior Building Material?

Concrete Vs Asphalt

At Derk Harmsen Construction, Inc., we specialize in concrete and asphalt installation, concrete repair and maintenance, and asphalt patching and paver repair. These materials are often used for driveways, sidewalks, and parking lots, and each has its own advantages. The best choice often comes down to climate and budget. These comparisons and others below are intended to help you find the most superior building material for your application.


For asphalt surfaces, the cost of installation is around $2 to $5 per square foot. This can change as oil prices fluctuate, as asphalt is made from petroleum products. Concrete can cost between $3 and $10 per square foot while finishing and other additional installation requirements can drive the cost higher. A fully customized concrete driveway can run up to $25 per square foot.1

Short Term vs. Long Term

Longevity makes up for concrete’s higher up-front installation cost. Asphalt generally lasts around 20 years, but with good upkeep, concrete can hold up for 30 to 50 years or longer. Maintenance and repairs are eventually needed for both, although asphalt must be sealed 6 months to a year after installation (then again every 3 to 5 years). Concrete can be sealed for protection and aesthetics but doesn’t require it as much; with adequate protection, it is a much more durable, cost-effective solution.

Which Is Best in Texas’ Hot Climate

In very hot weather, asphalt softens up and can stick to shoes and tires. Texas has long, hot summers, so the constant softening and hardening cycles eventually cause asphalt surfaces to crack and sag. Concrete performs better in heat. However, it isn’t superior in colder climates. If concrete isn’t properly winterized, it can crack, buckle, and heave while salt can leave permanent stains and pits.

Aesthetic Variability

To install, asphalt requires rolling and compression. Although some sealants have tints and colors, the options are generally limited as the installation process doesn’t support stamping, etching, and other finishing processes. Concrete, on the other hand, can be stained and tinted to enhance its gray color. Patterns can be stamped into it or a textured finish can be created to complement your home’s design.


Both concrete and asphalt are versatile building materials. Asphalt can be more easily repaired while resealing can protect it and help the surface last longer. Recent advances allow it to be mixed with coloring agents or for color tints to be added to sealants. Concrete is suited for just about any paving application, can be patched if cold weather causes cracks, and be engraved with any type of design.

Hire a Professional Asphalt or Concrete Contractor

Derk Harmsen Construction, Inc., specializes in pavement installation and concrete and asphalt patching and paving repair in the Houston area. Located in Deer Park, TX, we can help you find the best option for your driveway, sidewalk, landscape, road, or parking lot. To learn more about our installation and construction services, and receive a free estimate, call 281-479-3400 or contact our team online.