Crumbling Asphalt Driveway Edges? Causes and Repair Options


Do you have crumbling asphalt driveway edges? The good news is that a crumbling asphalt edge on your driveway is predominantly an appearance issue and doesn't usually affect the structural integrity of your driveway. Regardless, you likely don't want to leave it alone since it can be quite unsightly. Fortunately, the edges are repairable. Further, by understanding why the edges crumbled, you can avoid the problem from occurring a second time.


Asphalt edges can crumble for a variety of causes, but the result is always the same — a weakened edge that is both unsightly and unsound.

Thin Pour

A thinly poured edge, particularly if it is exposed and extends beyond the compacted gravel base, is more likely to crumble from use and weathering. When properly poured, the edge of your asphalt drive should taper down gradually to the ground, meeting the surface just shy of the edge of the gravel base. Then, a bit of soil and perhaps the local turf is allowed to cover the thinnest edge, which provides protection from crumbling.

Mechanical Damage

Mechanical damage can be the result of driving on the very edge of the driveway. The weight of the vehicle, over time, causes the asphalt to crumble. Constant pressure from heavy vehicles can also flatten the edge over time so that it extends beyond the gravel base, thus leading to a thinner edge and pronounced crumbling.


The very edge of the asphalt and gravel base shouldn't have exposure to the elements, which is why the soil is usually pulled over it. Exposure typically occurs due to over-edging the lawn along the verge of the drive. Once exposed, water runoff along the driveway's edge can wash out the gravel base so that the asphalt overhangs the soil, thus leading to crumbling if any pressure is placed on the paving.

Repair Options

Fortunately, you have no need to replace the entire driveway simply because the edge is weak. In most cases, crumbling edges can be repaired successfully. You have two main repair options. The one you choose depends upon personal aesthetics.


One of the simplest fixes is edging along the sides of the driveway, either from poured concrete or decorative bricks and pavers. First, your repair technician cuts away the crumbling asphalt strip along the driveway edge. They then prepare the edging trench and install a firm base inside of it.

The final step is either pouring the concrete edging or laying the bricks to create a border on either side of the driveway. A flexible grout seal, often from a polymer compound, may go between the edging and the asphalt to allow for thermal expansion. Otherwise, a small space is left between the edging and the asphalt so that neither material will crack as it expands or contracts due to temperature changes.

Base Extension

If you prefer to maintain a clean asphalt edge, then you may need to extend the base. This process also requires that the damaged edges are first cut away. Then, add fresh gravel that is then compacted to extend the driveway base as much as necessary to prevent future crumbling. The repair technician will mechanically heat the edge of your driveway so it can bond with the patch. Finally, they will pour new hot asphalt to create a new edge.

The main issue with base extension is that the new edge may be darker in color compared to the older asphalt. Seal coating or resurfacing the rest of the driveway can help camouflage the edge patches so your driveway still looks nice.

Contact Star Paving Company for more information on repairing your damaged driveway.