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Darren Skillen and the team at Superior Driveways are regional and nationwide specialists in pattern imprinted concrete. Much of our work takes place close to home in the Greater Manchester area. In addition to covering our home town of Bury, we also lay imprinted concrete driveways in Preston, Stockport, Wigan and all surrounding locations.
On this page, we provide a full and detailed insight into the driveway installation process. Darren is personally available to discuss any further enquiries you may have about pattern imprinted patios and driveways or the techniques we use as a company.
Mechanical diggers and hand-held hydraulic equipment are used to remove the surface of existing driveways at your Great Manchester property. We collect rubble immediately on the vast majority of projects. Superior Driveways work closely with Browns Site Management, who will dispatch a grab hire vehicle to remove the waste we create.
It is very rare that we will use skips to collect waste but if we do, we can arrange for a permit from your local authority in Preston, Stockport, Wigan or elsewhere.
On installations of less than 250m², fine grading work and levelling is completed on the same day as excavation. This is something Superior Driveways take immense pride in. Our team uses the natural direction of the land to allow for drainage and soakaways, ensuring the finished surface will never pool water. This is essential for maintaining safe conditions.
The installation of steps and edging can be incorporated at this stage.
Some driveways will sit over existing manholes and these need to be set accurately. They must also be easily accessible for other contractors and utility workers. Specialist trays are used at your Greater Manchester property, set at the correct level, to disguise unsightly manhole covers. Work around manholes is handled solely by Superior Driveways.
In most cases, the placement of concrete at your Preston, Stockport, Wigan or Greater Manchester home will take place on a different day to excavation and levelling. During the warmer summer months, and on small installations, we can often have concrete poured and left to set on the same day. Superior Driveways only use prescription ready-mix concrete.
Our choice of concrete sets us apart from competing companies because it ideal for all sizes, weathers and styles. This is where Darren’s expertise is so essential, and we will never use volumetric concrete because of ongoing doubts over the material’s validity and reliability.
Once concrete has been poured into the levelled area at your Greater Manchester property, Superior Driveways use specialist tools to work the wet ready-mix concrete. Tamping tools ensure levels are set correctly and the ‘fat’ of the concrete is brought to the top. Ultimately, it is the fat which assists with pigment distribution and improves absorption qualities.
Prior to tamping, a ‘roller-bug’ tool is used to help prepare for the next stage.
The application of pigment for driveways in Preston, Stockport, Wigan and the surrounding Manchester area is something which requires critical skills. Only a skilled, time-served tradesperson can apply pigmentation, in your preferred choice of bespoke colour, and in a solid, even and sufficient manner. This is something of an art form for Darren and his team.
This is a process which allows for the most minor of levelling adjustments. It is also essential in helping pigmentation to absorb through to the concrete surface of our driveways, and provides more uniform colour consistency and distribution. This is another time-served skill and our own installers spend an average 2 to 3 years learning this particular craft.
Superior Driveways have the largest range of rubber-moulded mats in the whole of the Greater Manchester area. This gives our customers an almost limitless choice when it comes to printed designs for their driveways. These mats are specifically used to introduce the preferred pattern to a concrete surface which has been suitably primed and repaired.
Once more, the timing and skill required for this phase of the job are essential. Our award-wining company has individual skills levels of between 10 to 19 years per person.
Superior Driveways use release powders during the printing phase which stop the rubber-moulded mats sticking to the surfaces of new pattern imprinted concrete driveways. These are washed off once the initial curing period has passed. Based on the size of the installation at your Preston, Stockport, Wigan or Greater Manchester property, and dependent on the exposure and weather conditions, this happens 1 to 2 days later.
When we attend to complete this phase, we will need access to your water supply. This is so the team at Superior Driveways can operate our high-pressure jet washing equipment.
During the cleaning phase, our personnel insert expansion cuts into the surface of the installation. This complies with guidelines issued by the Concrete Society. Inserted at specified widths, the cut joints reduce the potential for hairline fractures and allow for natural microscopic expansion and contraction throughout all four seasons.
No ‘work’ actually happens during this phase. Instead, Superior Driveways will allow the product to cure naturally for between 3 to 7 days and this will be dependent on the installation size, exposure, climate and prescribed mix. Customers in Greater Manchester will be advised not to park on the surface but they will be able to walk on it.
Parking is prohibited for this period to protect against stains from oil and marks from tyres.
Our final visit to your Preston, Stockport or Wigan property, or elsewhere in the area, is made to apply an acrylic sealant. Our suppliers, PICS UK Ltd, are national and international industry leaders with the best available products for new driveways in our sector. The sealant we use, in addition to protecting the surface, also enhances colour and contrast.
Any finishing touches which might be required are made at this stage and we leave sealed driveways to set for 48 hours. After this period, your installation can be used normally with the peace of mind that it is suitable for purpose and of a truly superior finish.