6 Ways To Prepare Your Exposed Aggregate Driveway For Halloween

Halloween is an exciting time of year for some. Dating back 2000 years to the Celtic people, what we know as Halloween today was originally the festival of Samhain. The Celtics believed that on the 31st of October, when summer ended and harvest began, the barrier between the living world and the dead were blurred and weakened – allowing spirits to pass into the living world.

Today, though, most people just dress up in their favourite horror or pop-culture outfits and go to parties or – more notably – go trick or treating around their neighbourhoods. That’s where your exposed aggregate driveway comes into the mix! Today we’re going to be talking all about how you can spook up your driveway and front yard to get more involved in the festivities.

1.    Cleaning the yard

First and foremost, you’re going to want to get your yard and driveway into tip-top condition. That means mowing the lawn, trimming the hedges and cleaning your driveway. The fantastic thing about an exposed aggregate driveway is its non-slip surface makes it the best option for young trick or treaters to be walking on after dark. That being said, you should still do a sweep of the yard to make sure there are no tripping hazards. Once you’ve sharpened up your yard, it’s time to start with the decorations.

 

2.    Pumpkins

An iconic staple of Halloween all around the world – pumpkins are a fantastic first step in transforming your yard into a Halloween haven. If you’re feeling particularly artsy, then you can carve them out and light candles inside of them to give them a scary effect – or even carve images into them. Consider using battery-operated flames to reduce the risk of any fire hazards. Place them around your yard and driveway to guide the way for trick or treaters.

 

3.    Gravestones

An especially fun and affordable idea is to get some fake grave headstones to place around your lawn. You can put the names of famous horror characters on them for even more detail. If you can get some fresh soil from Bunnings, then you can pile it in front of some of the headstones to make it seem like they were just freshly buried. Decorate the headstones further by sticking white streamers shaped like ghosts around them and on your trees and windows.

 

4.    Light the way

We mentioned that the pumpkins with candles can be placed on your driveway to light the way for the trick or treaters, but you should add more lighting to your repertoire just in case. If you have any outdoor lighting on your porch or in your garden, then take full advantage of them.

Even with daylight savings, there’s no guarantee that people won’t come after the sun sets – so be sure to place lanterns by your doors (again, best to use battery-powered candles if possible) to illuminate the area. This will also advertise to trick or treaters that you are participating in the fun.

 

5.    Fog machine

This is for those people that want to go that extra step further. A fog machine can be a lot of fun and give some great effects when combined with lights in a dimly lit environment. It’s also a lot safer than dry ice whilst still giving a similar effect.

 

6.    Have fun!

Don’t forget to dress up yourself and have that bowl of candy ready for when your guests come past. Be sure to be friendly and enjoy yourself. Halloween isn’t only for children – and with your exposed aggregate driveway complimenting your set-up, you’ll be the most popular street in the neighbourhood.

 

Are you interested in an exposed aggregate driveway?

Here at A Better Driveway, we specialise in exposed aggregate driveways. Our contractors will work with you to find out exactly what you need. With years of experience, our qualified contractors will work around you to ensure that the job gets done in a timely and efficient manner.

Some of the other types of concrete that we specialise in are coloured and textured. Whether you’re after a touch-up or a brand-new driveway – A Better Driveway has you covered.

If you’d like to know more about our exposed aggregate driveways or other services, then please don’t hesitate to give us a call on (03) 9308 6112. You can also fill out the enquiry form found on our website.

4 Attractive Concrete Patio Designs

Entering the second month of spring there’s no doubt that everyone’s enjoying the steady transition into warmer, sunnier weather. You don’t have to go to a park or café to enjoy the nice weather though. Before summer hits, make that patio you’ve always thought about getting a reality. Whether it’s in your back or front yard, there’s a myriad of ideas you can go with. If you’re looking to stand out in Melbourne though, why not consider an exposed aggregate patio? Let’s take a look at four designs that’ll get you excited and inspired.

1.    The multi-levelled patio

This design is quite exciting as it opens up a range of possibilities not just for relaxation, but also for gardening as well. This can be done in two ways. The first is where you place your furnishings and barbeque on the ground level, and then create a few smaller levels going up that can act as raised garden beds with concrete planters.

The other way is the reverse. The top-level is your recreational area and the garden levels are built on a decline. This works especially well if your backyard is on a natural decline already. Mix it up by making each level a different colour with the large selection of colours and aggregates available when choosing exposed aggregate concrete.

 

2.    The hybrid patio

Whether it’s with grass and concrete or wood and concrete, mixing it up is always great fun. A classic idea is large, rectangular exposed aggregate slabs with well-trimmed grass in between. The steps leading down from the patio would be made of exposed aggregate as well.

Similarly, you can use pebbles or medium-sized stones to fill in the gaps between the concrete slabs. Using exposed aggregate as your patio concrete of choice also gives you the added benefit of a non-slip surface.

Alternatively, you can create a wholly concrete patio and border it with wooden planks – or even flip it around and border a wooden deck with concrete slabs. The dark wood will contrast beautifully with the classic, cool grey of concrete and you’ll end up getting the best of both worlds.

 

3.    The concrete roof patio

This is quite a unique idea. Whatever style of patio you decide to go with on the ground level, you can build a matching – or contrasting – concrete roof above it. This works particularly well for patios that are not directly attached to the exterior of the house.

This can be a basic square roof, or, you can try for a curved or geometrically shaped roof to give your patio a unique personality. The entire patio does not need to be covered either, you can only cover part of the patio and leave the other section bare for those days where you just want to soak up the sun.

 

4.    The haven patio

A haven-styled patio gives off a very European vibe. The prime characteristics of this type of patio are the walls that essentially make it a closed-off little haven. They feature single (or multiple if you prefer) arches that lead to the rest of your yard. If it doesn’t clash too much with the rest of your house and landscape – we recommend painting the concrete walls white.

This little haven is great for a more private outdoor oasis. Dress it up with some potted plants and banana lounges and it’ll be just like relaxing on the Greek islands. Feel free to add some features to the walls with some circular or diamond-shaped holes. This acts both a design aesthetic but will also let a bit more sun in during the early rising and late setting phases.

Interested in exposed aggregate solutions in Melbourne?

Whether you’re looking to have a concrete patio or driveway built, A Better Driveway is the business for you. With years of hands-on experience, our highly trained and qualified contractors can supply you with quality exposed aggregate solutions in Melbourne. We also specialise in textured and coloured concrete services and will take the time to work with you to ensure that the project is exactly how you want it to be before any physical work is started.

So, if you require an exposed aggregate patio or driveway in Melbourne, then please do not hesitate to give us a call on (03) 9308 6112. Alternatively, you may also fill out the enquiry form on our website.

The Ultimate Spring Cleaning Checklist: Outdoor Edition

It’s official: spring has sprung. Now is the time to dust off your outdoor furniture and start preparing for the constant sunshine! It’s also a great time to clean up your backyard and front yard in preparation for entertaining your friends and family. But you may be finding it difficult to decide where to start fixing up the carnage left behind by the harsh winter weather. That’s why we’ve put together this checklist, complete with advice on how to maintain (and upgrade) concrete driveways in Melbourne residences.

Make your windows sparkle

Windows (and more specifically, window screens) often get overlooked on spring cleaning checklists. But it’s one of the areas that can get the most visibly filthy, especially after winter when rain residue tends to build up.

The good news is, cleaning your windows is easy. All you need to do is remove the screens and soak them in lukewarm soapy water. If there is a lot of dust built up on the screens, use an old toothbrush to clean them up. For the windows themselves, all you’ll need is a soft, soapy sponge and a hose before they start to sparkle again.

 

Sort out the shed

Sheds and garages are notorious for becoming clutter havens. But clutter doesn’t just waste space or make it harder to find things – it also makes it unsafe for you and others to pass through. If you’re thinking about a spring clean, then start by removing everything in your shed or garage and sorting them into categories. Purchase and assemble new shelves and storage areas, and ensure you label everything for clarity. Who knows – once you remove the clutter, you may end up with a lot more free space to play around with.

 

Clear away leaves and debris

Set aside a few hours to rake your lawn and remove any debris that may be clogging up your gutters and downspouts. Before cleaning your gutters, ensure you set up your ladder and equipment correctly, wear gloves and prepare to bring a brush to help you clear away the piles of dirt. After you manually clear away debris, wash down your gutters with a hose for several minutes to ensure they’re squeaky clean.

 

Touch up faded paint

Out of all the areas of your home, a paint job is one that stands out. If your paint has taken a hit from the rain, hail and wind, you’ll be able to tell – from the peeling edges to the faded tint. Luckily, it’s relatively easy to roll up your sleeves and give areas of your home a new paint job. And with the constant spring sun on your side, it will dry quickly and easily too.

 

Pressure wash your driveway

Autumn and winter can be tough on your driveway. From leaf stains to mud and dirt, you may find that your driveway isn’t as polished as it used to be. Never fear: this is where the all-powerful pressure wash comes in handy. A pressure clean is not only good practice for driveway maintenance, but it’s also handy for raising curb appeal to those who pass by. If your driveway is due for a reseal or has cracks, spring is the time to address these issues before summer arrives.

 

Whip out the BBQ

It’s definitely time for your BBQ to come out of hibernation. But you shouldn’t start using it until you’ve given it a good clean. Make sure you use a degreaser and a wire brush to scrape off all the old charcoal and grease that may have built up from last season. Don’t forget to clean up your entertainment area before you invite everyone over!

 

Give the decking a fresh coat

After three months of rain, cold weather and muddy stains, your decking has probably seen better days. Now that the sun is out, it’s a great time to sweep off the leaves and pressure wash all the dirt off. After you’ve applied some deck clean and given it a good scrub, you’ll be able to apply a fresh stain on your decking.

 

We install the best concrete driveways in Melbourne

If you’ve noticed your concrete driveway could use a facelift, springtime is the perfect time to reinstall a new one that breathes life into your home’s façade.

At A Better Driveway, we have over 20 years of experience in designing and installing concrete driveways in Melbourne. We specialise in creating popular and stylish finishes, including exposed aggregate, coloured concrete and textured concrete. We service both residential and commercial clients, and some of our top clients have included Westfield Shopping Centres and The Melbourne Exhibition Centre.

Want to learn more about the concrete driveways in Melbourne we design and install? Feel free to give us a call on (03) 9308 6112 or fill out an enquiry form online.

6 Fun Ways You Can Transform Your Driveway Into A Spring Oasis

Spring is here. The warmer weather is bringing smiles to people around Melbourne and inviting them outdoors. Spring is the perfect season to start putting your front yard in order and turning it – along with your Melbourne concrete driveway – into a fun little oasis for people to enjoy the sight of. Not only will it look amazing, but it will also be a fun project for you to do. So, without further ado, here are six fun ways you can transform your driveway into a spring oasis – as presented to you by the concrete driveway specialists at A Better Driveway.

1.   Put an arch in

This is one of the best things that you can do to your driveway because there are so many different options. You can commission a large arch made of concrete/stone or just purchase or make a timber or plastic arch. It will feel great driving through it, but it will also look great to your neighbours and people passing by. You can decorate the arch as well with fairy lights or grow vines around it – depending on what style you’ve gone with. Smaller archers may also fit in if you have footpaths in your front lawn.

 

2.   A water feature

Now, the water feature won’t actually go in the middle of the driveway – but beside it. A water feature – such as a water fountain – is always a sure way to attract attention to a yard and give it a bit of character. You can make your own or opt to purchase something a bit fancier. You can never go wrong with a water feature in your yard. You can go one step further and put some fish in the fountain if it’s big enough – just don’t forget to feed them!

 

3.   Make use of that tree

If you have a large, sturdy tree growing in your yard with a strong trunk sticking out then you can attach a small swing to it. Paint the swing a bright, pastel colour like cyan or pink (or even better, something that matches the rest of your house and yard) and tie it to the trunk. Be sure to test the trunk first to make sure it can actually hold someone’s weight.

 

4.   Flowerbed border

Moving back to your Melbourne concrete driveway, hedging the lawn beside the concrete and turning it into a distinctive border is a brilliant idea. You can put a miniature, physical border there or even just turn it into a long flowerbed. There are a variety of small flowers and plants that you can place to act as a colourful and different border.

 

5.   Put in posts

Bordering your driveway with posts is a unique idea and has the potential to be host to many different ideas. For example, you could hang potted plants from them or lamps to guide the way in the evening. Fairy lights could be hung up between the posts to form a colourful web above you – the order in which you hang the lights is entirely up to you.

 

6.   Outdoor furnishings

It’s easy to furnish an outdoor area, but if the only available area to furnish is out in the sun then you might have to opt for something a little different. Try a stone couch or nook that you can add removable cushions too. That way, the prolonged exposure of the sun and rain won’t destroy the fabric furniture. You can put in a large umbrella as well for some shade when you know you’re going to be using it a lot.

 

Thinking of paving a new concrete driveway in Melbourne?

Whether you’re looking at upgrading or getting something for a new home, A Better Driveway has all your concrete driveway needs for Melbourne sorted. We are highly trained and experienced concrete contractors that specialise in a variety of concreting services including, exposed aggregate, coloured concrete and textured concrete.

Our professional contractors will work with you to ensure that your Melbourne concrete driveway turns out exactly how you want it to. They will work around your schedule to turn your dream into a reality without sacrificing quality or workmanship at all.

If you would like to know more about our Melbourne concrete driveway services, then please don’t hesitate to contact us by calling (03) 9308 6112. Alternatively, you may also fill out the contact form found on our website.

Alternate Uses For Your Exposed Aggregate Driveway

Having an exposed aggregate driveway can be brilliant for a variety of reasons. From the non-slip surface to its durability, exposed aggregate is a widely loved and used concrete style. But let’s go a bit beyond the type of concrete and instead look at the applications of your driveway. The primary application of a driveway is generally as a space to park your vehicles – but there are a variety of other things that you can do on a driveway. Let’s have a look at some of those, shall we?

Yard sale

As explained a couple of blogs ago, a yard sale is a great way to get rid of old stuff you don’t want anymore. It is also ideal for clearing up space in your house and getting the community together. If you’ve followed our blog on creating a balanced front yard, then you won’t need to add a whole lot more to make it appeal to new customers – but there are always new and fun decorations you can temporarily add for such an event.

 

Basketball court

Ok, maybe not an entire court, but you can definitely add a basketball ring to your driveway. You can have a free-standing one that you can wheel around to different positions or install a ring to the top of your garage. This can encourage exercise in a fun way. It’s great for both kids and adults.

Playing sport on an exposed aggregate driveway can also be advantageous as the durable and slip-resistant surface only adds further incentive to the game. However, if you do not have a gated front yard then you should be careful when playing as your driveway will most likely lead to an open street or road.

 

Hosting a party

You don’t need an excuse to throw a party for all your friends, but with Spring coming up, you’ll struggle to find an excuse not to have one. Backyard parties are tried and true, but parties in the front can be just as fun – especially during the weekend. The endless colour and style combinations you can choose from when having your exposed aggregate driveway paved can act as a great party feature as well as a talking point. Decorate your yard and set up some tables and chairs.

 

Start a side business

Whether you’re selling home-made items like sweaters and scarves or your own blend of lemonade, your driveway is a great place to start a side business. This is an especially fantastic and profitable idea if your house is located in a busy neighbourhood that has a lot of foot traffic. You can put up signs around the area and at busy intersections to maximise your customer rate. You can also try promoting your little business online.

Another interesting way to earn some money on the side using your driveway is by renting the space out to the public to use. This is especially handy if you live near a sporting stadium, theatre or event space that regularly holds public events where parking may be scarce.

 

Forging memories

Your driveway can act as a great backdrop and landscape to take photos – whether they be the annual family Christmas photo or the odd extended-family photo. These are photos that will be cherished in your family throughout generations to come. Photos are a great way to also mark milestones such as your child’s first or last day of school – or the school formal. The only way to make these photos better is to have a breathtaking environment to take them in such as your exposed aggregate driveway.

 

Do you need an exposed aggregate driveway?

An exposed aggregate driveway is more than just a reliable and durable driveway, it’s a statement piece, and A Better Driveway is the company you need to bring that statement piece to your home. With years of experience, our highly trained and accommodating concrete contractors will determine exactly what you would like and work around your schedule to get the job done in a timely and professional manner.

Along with exposed aggregate concrete, we also specialise in textured and coloured concrete products and can pave all types of walkways, footpaths and pool decking as well.

If you would like to know more about our services, then please do not hesitate to give us a call on (03) 9308 6112. Alternatively, you can also fill out the enquiry form on our website.

9 Things To Help You Host The Ultimate Backyard Party For Winter

We get some pretty frosty days here during Melbourne’s winter – to the point where some mornings we’re convinced it might even snow. But that shouldn’t stop us from having our friends and family over for a good old-fashioned party in the backyard. There’s plenty of things that you can do to throw a great party in your backyard – even in the winter. If you’ve got an exposed aggregate Melbourne backyard then it’ll make your party even better because of the non-slip surface it creates – keeping it safe for everyone. The following nine points are all designed to help you throw the ultimate backyard party this winter.

1.   Pick a theme

Parties are always more exciting if they have a theme attached to them. Whether it’s a colour, decade or superhero-themed party your guests will love it and most of them will get follow along and get involved.

 

2.   Consider gas heaters

It’s fairly easy to find a gas heater to either purchase or hire just for the party. They’re easy to operate and very reliable. Most important of all though – they’re very warm! They’ll also create points where your friends and family can come together to huddle since they’ll all want a piece of the heater, which will inevitably lead to further mingling and conversation.

 

3.   Look into a fire pit

For a more rustic feel, have a look at a fire pit. You can purchase one or even construct your own if you have the time. Similarly to the gas heater – it will also create a huddle point and also act as a conversational piece. Fire pits will also go great with your exposed aggregate concrete and encourage marshmallow toasting – which is just delicious!

 

4.   Cover up with a tarp

If you have a large, uncovered area then you should consider tarping it up. If done correctly, this will repel water and keep your party dry if some wet weather is forecasted to strike. Even if it doesn’t rain though, it will keep the party warmer and act as a barrier against the wind. We wouldn’t recommend setting up a fire pit in a covered area – but you’ll still be able to use a gas heater underneath a tarp.

 

5.   Set up sections

If you don’t want to – or are unable to – tarp up your whole backyard, then you can create sections and turn them into little stations. Each station can have its own theme – like a horseshoe-throwing area or a darts area. Some of the sections can be outdoors in uncovered areas though. This can also add a dynamic layer to your party – giving it some character.

 

6.   Light it up

You’ll want to make sure your backyard is well lit as well. But, don’t just rely on outdoor lights you already have installed – give your party some sense of style and set up some coloured fairy lights along the edges of your fence or near the different stations you’ve set up. If you can, try suspending them between posts as well.

 

7.   Drink and food stations

As well as game and hang-out stations, the drink and food stations are an absolute must. Lay down a colourful tablecloth – or one that matches the theme of your party – and have one table with food and another with drinks. The drinks table can have an esky full of cooled drinks on the ground beside the table so it’s easier. You can also have two different tables for food – one with snacks and another with more substantial food like pizza or some party pies and sausage rolls.

 

8.   Furnish your yard

Think about where people are going to sit as you don’t want everyone standing for the entire night. If you don’t have any – or enough – outdoor furniture, then consider hiring fold-out chairs and set them up around the heater/fire and along the fence/wall. You don’t want to crowd the central area with chairs so best to position them out of the way initially.

 

9.   Add your own twist

Make a batch of specialty hot chocolates or special desserts for everyone. Prepare in advance and get a friend to help you if you’re expecting a lot of guests. For smaller parties, you could consider cheese or chocolate fondue (or both) over the fire. This will give the party your own personal touch and give your guests something to remember after they go home.

 

Are you considering exposed aggregate in Melbourne?

Parties like these are great for this time in Melbourne, but if you have exposed aggregate concreting in your backyard they can be even better. A Better Driveway specialises in exposed aggregate concreting and can help you choose the right type that will suit your backyard.

If you would like to get in touch with us about exposed aggregate in your Melbourne backyard – or are interested in some of the other services we offer – then please give us a call on (03) 9308 6112 or fill out the enquiry form on our website.

7 Tips On Hosting The Best Garage/Yard Sale

There are many reasons you may consider having a garage/yard sale. One of the main reasons they’re held, though, is to get rid of old things that people no longer want or need. This could be anything from clothes to old DVDs and CDs. Maybe you just enjoy social gatherings and need an excuse to throw a gathering for the neighbourhood. Well, either way, you’re going to want to make a lasting impression and also increase the number of customers you bring to your sale. This blog will help you get started on your Melbourne driveway garage/yard sale to maximise the number of people you attract and also encourage them to hang around and shop.

1.   Deal in cash only

For starters, you should set up your fundamentals. Dealing with cash only is much easier than trying to get electronic payments going and also keeps things simple and stress-free. Carry around a fanny pack to make it easier to sort and handle the money. This also means you can stay on the go and assist your customers wherever they are during the sale – as opposed to having a stationary register. Staying portable essentially streamlines the whole operation.

 

2.   Price everything as you find it

When you’re looking for stuff you can sell, try to put price tags on them as you find them. That way you don’t have to sort through everything a second time later on. Keep the prices simple – solid dollar prices. You can get little stickers to write the prices on from your local newsagent or two-dollar store and attach them to the item. You can also use this stage to sort the items into categories.

 

3.   Colour coordinate your sale

Pick a theme for your sale! You should try and make sure there is some form of consistency in the layout as people generally enjoy aesthetically pleasing designs and recurring patterns. Whether you go for a monochromatic design or use some colours that may match your Melbourne driveway, the options are almost limitless.

 

4.   Advertise in advance

You should be advertising for your garage/yard sale at least two weeks in advance. Put up colourful signs – or signs that will match the theme you’ve chosen – around your street and around your block with clear instructions and details. Utilise social media as well if you want to bring in a larger audience. But if you’d prefer not to put your address up on social media then just keep it the neighbourhood.

 

5.   Laying it all out

Don’t just put everything out on your lawn or garage, plan where you’re going to put things. Sketch the layout beforehand and make sure there’s room for people to walk around and browse freely. Arrange the clothes on racks by size – cut paper plates and attach them to the rack to use as size dividers. Put bargain bins at the front for the very cheap items. Don’t forget to put up signs explaining what each section is – such as the bargain bin(s). You should also keep in mind that sometimes less is better. If you have an excess of a particular type of item, maybe don’t bring it all out at first. Sometimes limited items sell better than items with plenty of stock.

 

6.   Offer refreshments

Have snacks and drinks handy to encourage people to linger and enjoy the atmosphere or shop around further. This can be anything from doughnuts or just packets of biscuits. You can make some home-made lemonade or iced tea and bake some desserts for a more authentic feeling as well. This is something you may or may not want to do depending on how much you want people to hang around or if you want it to be more of a social gathering.

 

7.   Partner up with another family

If you partner up with another family, then you could potentially double the number of items in your sale. This could also give your potential buyers more of a variety to choose from. The other positive that comes out of this is a shared workload on the day. Sometimes it can be overwhelming to handle everyone – and if you can’t bring along a friend who’s willing to help – having that extra family along for the ride can be good. You can then choose how to divide the profits – whether you’ll split it down the middle or just go by whose items were sold.

 

Thinking of utilising your Melbourne driveway?

A Better Driveway is a Melbourne driveway business that specialises in exposed aggregate, coloured and textured concrete driveways. We use highly trained and experienced contractors that will turn your dream driveway into a reality so you can host your perfect garage/yard sale.

If you would like to get in contact with our Melbourne driveway company, then please give us a call on 03 9308 6112 or fill out the form on our website.

Selecting The Right Garage For Your Melbourne Concrete Driveway

A garage is a feature that carries with it a large number of benefits. Obviously, it can be used to store your car – which gives your driveway a break as well from the pressure of the car. But it’s much more than that. Some people don’t even use their garages to store their cars, but simply as a storage space or external room where they can hang out. For today’s blog, we’re going to show you the different types of garages that you can pick to complement your Melbourne concrete driveway.

Attached garage

The most common type of garage seen is the one that’s attached to your home. This simply means that it is connected to your house in some way. These garages are handy if your concrete driveway in Melbourne leads to the side of your home – or if you’re planning for it to.

These tend to have doorways on the inside that allow you to go from your house to your garage without having to go outside first. If you use these types as storage units then they can be especially handy as you won’t have to travel far when moving stuff around. This type of garage can have as many doors as you like and can also be multi-levelled.

 

Detached garage

The opposite of the attached garage, this is a stand-alone building that can act as a car space, storage room or even as a hang-out area (or all of the above depending on the size). This type of garage works especially well on larger properties where perhaps the driveway leads away from the house. Sometimes the detached garage is still next to the house even – but just not connected.

Something you can do if it is a distance away from your house though is build a covered walkway for the rainier seasons so you can travel from your garage to your home with ease. Adding such a feature also opens up a variety of options for decorations – both with the actual walkway and the surrounds of it. For example, you can border the walkway with a long flower patch or put up some wooden crossed fencing and have vines weave through the openings.

 

Multi-door garages

Garages don’t have to be restricted to a single door. You’re essentially limited by the size of your property as there are garages that exist with more than six doors. The size of the garage door can vary as well depending on what type of vehicle you have. So, if you have two cars you can purchase a garage with one large door or two smaller ones – depending on what you personally prefer.

 

Multi-level garages

These types of garages can be quite technical, especially if you’re installing things like car lifts. They are – as the name suggests – garages with multiple levels. Whether you use both levels for different cars or just use the bottom level for your car and the top as a storage area or hang-out room is up to you, but they can be very useful.

These types of garages are especially suited to the detached sort that stand alone as their own building. If you are going to attach a multi-level garage to your home, then it may go better with a two-storey home.

 

Integrated garages

Whilst you may think this is basically the same as an attached garage, it is actually quite different. An attached garage can be built after the home has been built and just attaches on to the side of the home. An integrated garage is actually part of the house’s structure and will usually have part of the house build above it. For example, the house would be above the garage instead of just the roof of the garage. These can sometimes be limited in their space but also bring the benefits of a seamless looking building.

 

Are you interested in a Melbourne concrete driveway?

The best way to compliment a garage is to have an amazing looking Melbourne concrete driveway accompanying it. This is why A Better Driveway is the perfect company for you. We specialise in top quality exposed aggregate, textured and coloured concrete driveways. Our qualified and experienced contractors will work with you to ensure that your Melbourne concrete driveway is exactly how you envisioned it to be.

If you would like to find out more about our Melbourne concrete driveway services, then please give us a call on (03) 9308 6112 or head to our website and fill out the form to get in touch with us.

Our Guide To Maintaining Your Driveway During Winter

Winters in Melbourne can get pretty cold, and in such cold weather it can be hard to leave your home for social events – let alone actually doing work. But, it’s important to remember that whilst your Melbourne concrete driveway is built to last a long time, it is not invincible. In today’s blog, we’re going to run through some things that you can do to help your Melbourne concrete driveway maintain its durability and survive the harsh winter elements.

Cleaning

Before the colder parts of the season start to settle in you should consider cleaning your driveway of any debris it might’ve gathered. Also, keep an eye out for stains from oil or other types of liquid that could get worse over time if not properly attended to. If the colder parts of the season come around and your driveway is dirty, then there could be some permanent damage when combined with the cold weather. If you live in a particularly icy area, then your driveway may begin to crack – as well as become slippery and dangerous for people to walk on.

 

Check for cracks

Whether it’s from the icy weather specifically or not, you should check for cracks every couple of weeks on your driveway. A simple visual inspection should suffice. Be sure not to store heavy equipment or vehicles on your driveway regularly as it will not be able to handle the pressure over prolonged periods of time.

For winter, however, this is especially important to look out for as if there are cracks in your driveway, then water can get in. If it’s cold enough, the water will freeze overnight in the cracks, forcing them to expand. Be sure to also keep an eye on the spacers between concrete slabs – if this applies to the type of Melbourne concrete driveway you have – as they can be the most vulnerable parts.

 

Resealing

To avoid cracks expanding, you should consider resealing your driveway. No matter what style of concrete you’ve used for your driveway, it will last for a long time. But the sealants will eventually wear off, which is wear the resealing comes in. Do not reseal a driveway during the winter as the cold weather will make it very difficult for the resealing process to be completed.

Try to aim to have your driveway resealed before the winter or – if you can afford to – afterwards. Sealants typically last for around two years – depending on the amount of wear and use the driveway endures in that time. The resealing process can take a few days as it must be thoroughly cleaned first and left to dry for 48-hours before the actual resealing can commence.

 

Do not use harmful chemicals

Chemicals such as de-icers are harmful to driveways because their chemical composition can cause the concrete to destabilise. De-icers – as the name suggests – are chemicals used to remove ice from surfaces. This process has a higher rate of destabilising concrete in a colder climate – which is the most likely time you’d be using de-icers. Magnesium chloride and potassium acetate are two chemicals to watch out for as they will cause scaling and spalling within your concrete driveway.

 

Check your gutters

Gutters become blocked. Whether it’s because of fallen leaves or other things, it’s something that happens. When this occurs, water will overflow off the side and it could end up running down your driveway. If your property has good drainage, then it’ll run right down your driveway and onto the street gutters.

However, what you don’t want to happen is for excess water to pool up over your driveway in a cold climate as this could spell trouble – especially if it freezes over. Even if you do have good drainage you still want as little water on your driveway as possible. Clean your gutters and make sure they’re flowing properly to avoid extra, unwanted water.

 

Are you looking for a concrete driveway in Melbourne?

If you need your Melbourne concrete driveway resealed just before the coldest parts of winter hits – or are simply just looking to install a new driveway – then why not consider A Better Driveway. Here at A Better Driveway, we use professional and fully qualified contractors to ensure your Melbourne concrete driveway is crafted to your liking and to your schedule. Whether you’re after an exposed aggregate, textured or coloured concrete driveway in Melbourne, our contractors will look after you and see that your driveway dreams come true.

If you would like to know more about getting a Melbourne concrete driveway, then please give us a call on (03) 9308 6112 or fill out the form on our website.

How Composting Can Help Your Garden

Composting is a fantastic tool that can not only improve your garden and the food you grow in it – but also helps the environment in a huge way. In today’s blog, we’re going to be having a look at what exactly composting is, as well as the various way it can help improve your garden and your impact on the environment. It’s always fantastic when the garden next to your Melbourne concrete driveway is in tip-top condition.

What is composting?

Composting is the practice of taking decaying organic material and essentially recycling it in a way where it helps soil and plant life to grow. As the organic matter decomposes, it feeds the soil – giving it rich nutrients. Composting speeds up the decomposition of compost because of the conditions that you’ve placed them in. The primary reasoning behind this is due to microorganisms.

Microorganisms need ideal climates to survive in. Things like heat, plenty of oxygen, nutrients and moisture are all necessary for microorganisms to successfully thrive in and do their part in the composting procedure. The two different types of microorganisms are called aerobes and anaerobes.

Aerobes are bacteria that need a minimum of 5% oxygen levels to survive. The aerobes consume the compost and expel chemicals such as magnesium, phosphorus and nitrogen. These are all nutrients that plants need to thrive and survive. Aerobes are the most effective and efficient types of microorganisms when it comes to composting.

Anaerobes, on the other hand, are not so efficient bacteria. These are the types of microorganisms that tend to thrive when there is not enough oxygen for aerobes – as anaerobes do not require oxygen to survive. They actually release chemicals which can be toxic to plants – such as hydrogen sulphide – and gives them a very bad smell.

 

What can be used as compost?

There is a large variety of organic materials that can be used as compost. Some of these include:

  • Tea bags
  • Grass, leaves and branches
  • Hay and straw
  • Eggshells
  • Fruit and vegetables
  • Hair and fur
  • Coffee grounds and coffee filters
  • Sawdust and woodchips

Simply place these on your soil and the composting process will begin. It’s important to have a good mixture of green and brown compost. Green compost – such as vegetables – is high in nitrogen whereas brown compost – such as dead leaves – is high in carbon. A near-perfect balance of these two is essential when composting because if the balance tips in one direction it can ruin the process.

For example, a carbon-rich compost pile will result in a significantly slower decomposition rate. But if your compost pile has too much brown compost, then the increased levels of nitrogen can turn the compost acidic – resulting in a toxic environment that can harm the soil and particular species of microorganisms.

Below are some examples of things that you should not compost:

  • Pet waste
  • Yard trimmings that have been treated by pesticides
  • Dairy products, fats and oils
  • Coal
  • Diseased plants

 

The environmental impact of composting

When you compost, you’re inadvertently sending less garbage to the landfill. In Australia, 3% of our greenhouse emissions are caused by compost in landfills. Because they’re buried under other garbage, they’re not getting enough oxygen and the anaerobes can thrive. These microorganisms end up decomposing the compost in such a way that it actually releases methane gas into our atmosphere – which is one of the most potent greenhouse gasses.

Some of the other environmental benefits include the fact that compost acts as a suppressor for pests and plant diseases. This means you don’t have to waste money on chemical fertilisers – which are also harmful to the environment and your soil/plants because of the chemicals within them. When you use compost, there’s also less chance of runoff occurring. This means that there are fewer bodies of water being contaminated and eroded.

 

Do you need a concrete driveway in Melbourne?

Composting is great for your garden, but to compliment your garden you’ll need a fabulous Melbourne concrete driveway. A Better Driveway can help you with that. We have years of experience and use fully qualified contractors that will work around your schedule to meet your requirements. We specialise in textured, coloured and exposed aggregate Melbourne concrete driveway options.

If you would like to get in touch with us about getting a concrete driveway in Melbourne, then please give us a call on (03) 9308 6112 or send us a message through our website here for a quote.