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    • kippers
    • By kippers 4th Oct 17, 11:42 AM
    • 1,939Posts
    • 5,915Thanks
    New driveway ...How to prevent cowboys?
    • #1
    • 4th Oct 17, 11:42 AM
    New driveway ...How to prevent cowboys? 4th Oct 17 at 11:42 AM
    We have just had a reasonable quote from our council to drop the curb outside our semidetached house (without a garage) provided we use permeable surfacing which we would want anyway. Our driveway is small but will be able to fit two cars on when its finished.

    My question is....we are not builders and havent got a clue what we need to ask o r what we really need, so how do we prevent cowboys who do a rubbish job? What on earth do we ask and if they gave us an answer how do we know if its right or not?

    We have bben looking at various companies on line which all look great...(but so did the website of the builder tha did our kitchen and the bodges are just coming to light now 5 years later).

    I know people say go and see some work that the companie do, but we also did this with our kitchen and now we realise they only send you to the very best house that could even be people they know for all we know.

    So in a nutshell any help / tips would be gratefully recd, thankyou
Page 1
    • andrewf75
    • By andrewf75 4th Oct 17, 12:19 PM
    • 7,986 Posts
    • 13,794 Thanks
    • #2
    • 4th Oct 17, 12:19 PM
    • #2
    • 4th Oct 17, 12:19 PM
    search online to find reviews of the company including social media eg facebook. yes they may have a load of fake reviews from their mates, but you can get a good idea I think.
    Another possibility is look out for a house with a new driveway like you want and knock on the door.
    • pollypenny
    • By pollypenny 4th Oct 17, 12:20 PM
    • 24,049 Posts
    • 62,670 Thanks
    • #3
    • 4th Oct 17, 12:20 PM
    • #3
    • 4th Oct 17, 12:20 PM
    Don't you know anyone to give you a personal recommendation?
    Member #14 of SKI-ers club

    Words, words, they're all we have to go by!.

    (Pity they are mangled by this autocorrect!)
    • EssexExile
    • By EssexExile 4th Oct 17, 12:44 PM
    • 2,869 Posts
    • 1,998 Thanks
    • #4
    • 4th Oct 17, 12:44 PM
    • #4
    • 4th Oct 17, 12:44 PM
    Another possibility is look out for a house with a new driveway like you want and knock on the door.
    Originally posted by andrewf75
    I've done this, it has worked well for me.
    Tall, dark & handsome. Well two out of three ain't bad.
    • Slinky
    • By Slinky 4th Oct 17, 12:48 PM
    • 5,241 Posts
    • 24,218 Thanks
    • #5
    • 4th Oct 17, 12:48 PM
    • #5
    • 4th Oct 17, 12:48 PM
    Another possibility is look out for a house with a new driveway like you want and knock on the door.
    Originally posted by andrewf75
    We did this. In the end used the builder who did our extension but we did at least find out what the block type was the other house has used.

    Take a look at the drive after it's rained. Somebody in the neighbouring street to us has just had an enormous front garden paved over. Looks OK, but I walked past last week after we had rain, the builders muggered up the fall and they've got an enormous shallow pond in their front garden now.
    • d0nkeyk0ng
    • By d0nkeyk0ng 4th Oct 17, 5:34 PM
    • 564 Posts
    • 211 Thanks
    • #6
    • 4th Oct 17, 5:34 PM
    • #6
    • 4th Oct 17, 5:34 PM
    We had our driveway done recently. Finding someone reputable was hard. The first chap who quoted us seemed to pluck a figure out of the air. Then again it may just be down to experience since they've done a lot of the driveways locally.

    The second chap took measurements, showed me pics of before, during and after work, as well as a folder with letters from satisfied customers. He had done a few driveways on the route to work which is a relatively affluent area. He sent me a quote which included an itemised list of work to be done.

    The third guy took measurements and gave me a quote there and then. It was 25% higher than the other two but couldn't start for another four months because they were booked up until then.

    I ended up going with the second guy. The work was done within five days. There was a slight bit of pooling of water at the front where the pavement dipped a little and the edging pavers followed this dip. They came the following day to rectify it by lifting up the pavers a few mm.

    Yet to see how the drive is as I haven't parked on it yet. I was advised to leave the tarmac for three days before parking and I decided to be extra cautious and leave it for an additional two days.
    • Jonesya
    • By Jonesya 4th Oct 17, 8:19 PM
    • 1,445 Posts
    • 887 Thanks
    • #7
    • 4th Oct 17, 8:19 PM
    • #7
    • 4th Oct 17, 8:19 PM
    Best advice I'd give is to read up on paving so you're an informed buyer, then not only can you decide what type of drive you'd want but also the things to look out for in the quote and questions to ask.

    The site below is a truly excellent resource on paving - it covers everything and gives examples of many of the possible problems you can get. Well worth spending an hour or two reading through it all:

    Main issues I've seen, which happened on a relative's drive - the contractor didn't remove enough soil so the final level was too high, and was too close to the damp proof layer on the house wall. It didn't bridge it, but it wasn't ideal. The higher level also resulted in the final level being slightly higher than the garage floor, again far from ideal if you want to keep water out! Also, drainage plumbing was undersized, they used small household waste pipe rather than proper soil pipe.
    • Ainsley1
    • By Ainsley1 5th Oct 17, 1:12 PM
    • 396 Posts
    • 181 Thanks
    • #8
    • 5th Oct 17, 1:12 PM
    • #8
    • 5th Oct 17, 1:12 PM
    Good advice to gen up on the subject first!

    Looking at recent work can only give you a guide. If it looks good it is good is not always reliable especially when you cannot see important aspects such as foundations! Many a block or tarmac drive ends up with dips and troughs a few years down the line!
    • PhilE
    • By PhilE 6th Oct 17, 1:21 AM
    • 332 Posts
    • 211 Thanks
    • #9
    • 6th Oct 17, 1:21 AM
    • #9
    • 6th Oct 17, 1:21 AM
    Have a look up your road, see what drives look appealing and maybe ask the owners.

    Bear in mind correct drainage, you dont want rain water collecting anywhere near your house or pooling on the drive. Some companies don't bear this in mind, a house on my street had to have their foundations underpinned because of rain water building up underneath their house, due to not having drainage channels in their drive.

    Another had a shared drive done last year. They installed drainage channels to one house but neglected the other.
    • d0nkeyk0ng
    • By d0nkeyk0ng 6th Oct 17, 9:31 AM
    • 564 Posts
    • 211 Thanks
    Completely agree with above wrt drainage. Our council allows new driveways to be built as long as there's either enough greenery to soak up rainwater, or there's drainage to soakaway. Any rainwater falling onto the driveway must not drain onto the pavement or road.

    We had aco drains installed along the front width of the house so that all rain water flows into the drain.
    • betsie
    • By betsie 6th Oct 17, 10:35 PM
    • 424 Posts
    • 417 Thanks
    If you look up Brett Martin ( one of the main paving manufacturers) they will give you details of paving companies they recommend in your area who they have approved.
    They only approve the companies that do a high standard of work and send questionnaires out after all jobs have been completed to make sure standards are still high.
    Also look on trust a trader once you have a couple of companies you might go with to see what the reviews are like.
    • glasgowdan
    • By glasgowdan 7th Oct 17, 7:43 AM
    • 2,895 Posts
    • 3,247 Thanks
    I'd always look at neighbour's drives and ask recommendations.

    Ps, it's K.E.R.B, not curb
    • no1catman
    • By no1catman 7th Oct 17, 10:12 PM
    • 2,684 Posts
    • 2,049 Thanks
    Go on the Marshalls Paving website - they have a list of contractors (by area) that they have checked their work.
    Only trouble - there may be so busy with customers, you may have to wait a bit - but is that so bad.
    Good luck.
    I used to work for Tesco - now retired - speciality Clubcard
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