Tar and chip is becoming an increasingly popular surface option in the UK thanks to its hardwearing nature and low-effort maintenance. Available in a selection of colours, this anti-slip surface is perfect for Driveways, Farm Roads, Commercial Driveways and Car Parks, as well as other large open spaces. 

At Driveline Surfacing, we have many years of experience in laying new surfaces including tar and chip dressing. Read on to find out more about this adaptive and cost-efficient surface…

The Ultimate Guide to Tar & Chip

Tar & Chip FAQs

What is tar and chipping?

Tar and chipping, also known as Tar and Chip is the process of pressing stone aggregate into hot bitumen (asphalt) and creating a flat, even surface which can be used for driveways and other large areas. Other names for tar and chipping include tar and stone, tar bond, and chip and seal.

How do you install tar-and-chip on a driveway?

Once the preparation is complete, a hot K-170 polymer-reinforced bitumen is sprayed onto the surface which seals it. Then, the aggregate is laid onto the bitumen and compacted using a heavy roller.

Can you lay tar-and-chip in the rain?

Tar and chip can be installed in light rain, however, during heavy precipitation or where there is standing water, it is not advised to lay a new surface.

How thick is a tar-and-chip driveway?

Tar and chip surfaces including driveways are approximately ⅜” thick including the asphalt and crushed stones. 

Does tar-and-chip last longer than asphalt?

While tar and chip can last around 7-15 years, making it a very economical choice, it may not last as long as asphalt. Asphalt surfaces require regular seal coatings to protect them from UV, chemicals and the weather. Due to this, asphalt may have more longevity than tar and chip surfaces. 

How long does chip and seal driveway last?

Due to the nature of the crushed-stone topping, it wears down a little easier and will last between 7-15 years depending on the level of use and care. Our tar and chip surfaces come with a 5 year guarantee.

How long does it take for tar-and-chip to dry?

Avoid walking on your new tar and chip driveway for at least 24 hours as it gives the material time to cure and garden. It is recommended to leave up to 48 hours where possible before driving on it, however.

Is tar and chip cheaper than tarmac?

During its lifetime, tar and chip is the more economical choice as it requires little to no maintenance and can even self-repair small holes in the surface. 

Is tar and chip cheaper than concrete?

Although tar and chip is more expensive than a gravel driveway, it is still cheaper than laying a concrete driveway. 

Can you tar-and-chip over gravel?

While you can install tar and chip over gravel it is important that the foundations are strong and secure. We make sure that the gravel surface is clear of any debris and fill in any potholes before laying the new tar and chip surface. 

Can you tar-and-chip over concrete?

As concrete is often stable and provides a great compaction surface, it is easy to tar and chip over many existing concrete surfaces.

How do you clean a tar-and-chip driveway?

Tar and chip surfaces are easily cleaned using a broom to sweep away debris and any loose stones. A gentle powerwash can also remove any ground-in dirt to restore your surface to its original colour. Tar and chip driveways are naturally resistant to weed growth! 

Learn More About Improving Your Surfaces

To get the most value from your property, whether domestic or commercial, contact us to find out more about upgrading your driveway or open space. Our experts at Driveline Surfacing Ltd will be happy to provide you with a free assessment and no-obligation quote.