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Can a Concrete Truck Drive on My Driveway? 6 Factors to Consider

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HMC Team
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Last updated: Sep 12, 2023
Can a Concrete Truck Drive on My Driveway? 6 Factors to Consider
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If you've ever needed a concrete delivery for projects like pouring a new driveway, patio or foundation, you were likely faced with the question - can the heavy concrete truck actually drive on my driveway without damaging it? These mixer trucks can haul over 10 cubic yards of concrete weighing well over 60,000 lbs when fully loaded. That's a lot of weight pressing down on your residential driveway!

Understandably, many homeowners are hesitant to have a massive concrete truck drive right up onto their driveway to deliver its payload. Cracks, crumbling pavement or even collapsed sections can appear once the heavy truck rolls back out. The repairs and replacement for such damage to your driveway or private road can be costly.

The good news is there are ways to minimize the risks and assess if your driveway can accommodate a concrete truck safely. In this article, we'll look at the key factors to consider and provide guidance on working with concrete contractors to get your delivery completed without lasting damage.

Factors to Consider When Allowing Concrete Trucks on Your Driveway

The main elements that will determine if your driveway can stand up to a concrete truck include:

Age and Existing Condition

Older driveways that are weathered or already deteriorated are much more prone to further damage from heavy vehicles. Inspect your driveway carefully and take note of any cracks, crumbling sections, potholes, or uneven sinking or rising that's already occurred. The presence of such flaws indicates the driveway will have a harder time supporting a concrete truck without suffering further degradation.

Material Type  

The material your driveway is constructed from is a major consideration. High quality concrete driveways are usually the best equipped to handle heavy loads without issue. Asphalt driveways are much more prone to getting deeply rutted, cracked or buckled by heavy trucks. And gravel or dirt driveways can really suffer from sinking, compaction and ruts as the truck's weight presses down.

Thickness

The thickness of the driveway matters when it comes to bearing heavy weight loads. Thin asphalt or concrete is more likely to crack under the concrete truck. Check the depth if possible - recommended thickness for concrete driveways is at least 4-6 inches for residential use. Well-constructed driveways are commonly 6 inches thick and thus better able to handle trucks.

Drainage and Soil Quality

The soil, drainage and underground conditions of your driveway's base also impact its strength. Soil that retains a lot of moisture is prone to shifting under heavy weight. Signs like standing water, mud or erosion around or under the driveway indicate the ground may sink when the concrete truck drives over. Make sure water drains well away from the driveway along its borders as well.

Truck's Load Weight 

Ask the concrete company how much the truck will weigh when fully loaded with the concrete you ordered. A typical 10 yard load on a large mixer truck can exceed 60,000 lbs. Larger volume orders mean more weight pressing down. Have the company bring the minimum necessary while still finishing your project.

Turning Motions

Pay attention to any turning or maneuvering the concrete truck has to perform on your driveway. Their tight turning radius applies immense lateral stress that can crack rigid concrete or rut asphalt driveways. Have the truck drive straight in and straight back out if the space allows for minimizing turning motions.

Recommendations for Allowing Concrete Trucks on Your Driveway

Here are some key tips for getting ready for the concrete truck and minimizing damage:

Inspect Closely

Walk the driveway and inspect for any current damage, cracks, soft spots or uneven areas. Take photos to document the original conditions if needed for insurance claims later. Have any major flaws repaired beforehand.

Check Thickness 

For concrete driveways, use a soil probe or small shovel in a few areas to determine its depth. Contact the original installer if unsure. For asphalt, check public permits or ask the company installing it. 

Discuss with Concrete Company

When ordering concrete, inquire about the anticipated fully-loaded truck weight and volume. See if a smaller truck is available if concerns arise. Discuss the best approach route and pouring site access point.

Request No Turning

Ask the drivers to enter and exit your property in straight paths as much as possible. Have them avoid turning around or making tight turns which add more side stresses.

Stay Centered

Keep the truck centered on the driveway over the thickest, most supported areas. Allow plenty of clearance for the truck's width and length when entering. Have a spotter help guide if needed.

Consider Alternate Delivery

Instead of a truck, see if concrete can be pumped or conveyed from the street to your pouring site instead. This avoids driveway use altogether but may incur additional costs for the extra equipment and labor. 

Reinforce Soft Areas

For soft ground or at-risk spots, use wood planks or steel plates underneath to distribute the truck's weight over a larger area and firm up the surface.

Make Repairs

Check for any new cracks or damage after the work is completed. Patch and repair impacted areas promptly to prevent further deterioration. Document damage clearly for insurance claims.

Conclusion

Having a heavy concrete truck pull up onto your residential driveway can certainly be nerve-wracking. But in most cases, with proper planning and care taken during access and delivery, you can complete your concrete work successfully without damaging effects. Inspect the driveway fully, note any risks or flaws, discuss with the concrete provider, and take preventative measures like reinforcing for soft spots ahead of time. Be sure to document original conditions and make any needed repairs promptly afterward as well. With some due diligence and care taken during the process, even driveways and private roads in moderate condition can accommodate necessary concrete trucks without lasting damage.