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Does anyone have any experience with a gravel stabilizing product? I'll say, somehow I've never seen this before, but it looks genius; especially if you could create a reasonable driveway out of this stuff that wouldn't buckle under a car's load. What are your opinions on it? Is it worth buying to use for regular pathways as well or is it best just dealing with slight shifting? If I were to use something like this, I'd probably create a secondary parking area and/or a new walkway to our back porch. (with stone edging, it could look nice for just about any project).

Does it work? Does the gravel shift much or show the grid? What are the ups or downs of a system like this?

Gravel stabilizing product

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Is that product in the picture plastic? – DMoore Mar 4 at 22:00
    
@DMoore I'm not sure, I think so. I just found a picture that shows off the product well. – TFK Mar 4 at 22:06
    
I would smack it with a hammer, if it breaks I would assume my car/tools would eventually cause similar harm. I have never used them. I could see use if your house had a 400 foot muddy driveway currently. – DMoore Mar 4 at 22:09
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@DMoore We have no issues with rainwater or mud. I'm just seeing it as possibly a cheaper version of paving/pouring out a place to park on. Typically gravel will give to cars, walking, etc. and leave tracks creating an uneven surface. I'm just wondering if this holds the gravel together like it says it does. – TFK Mar 4 at 22:15
    
Will perform better if packed right. Also the biggest part of the equation in the picture above is the edging. These pavers keep the gravel in but to me could easily be knock over too - so makes a good picture but not sure about functionality unless driveway was so wide you wouldn't hit it. Now gravel driveways at all - for the most part in my area they reduce the price of a home vs just dirt - as I need to get rid of said gravel before pouring. Do you want to spend money on something that reduces home's value? Depends on years you will spend there. – DMoore Mar 4 at 22:19
up vote 8 down vote accepted

Yes, it is used in construction somewhat commonly. There are a couple of different situations where I have personally be involved with its use:

  • Soil stabilization for large fills - In areas where the ground is soft and heavy construction equipment needs to move (e.g. access roads) it can be placed in layers and filled with soil to help distribute the weight of the equipment without forming ruts.
  • Gravel parking lots - Similar situations involving parking lots and gravel are used to provide natural water infiltration while still providing a surface that is less likely to rut.
  • "Invisible" roads - The fill material can be modified slightly to support grass growth. This has been used to provide lawn areas that can support fire trucks for emergency access in all conditions while not having to pave a road up to a building.

All of these situations are similar in that they provide for a distribution of wheel loads on soft or wet soil.

In summary, these types of products are used in construction, so they are equally applicable home use.

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But what about for gravel? Will it help create more of a solid stable walking/driving surface out of gravel? – TFK Mar 4 at 22:17
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@TFK Yes, that is bullet 2. Really, the fill material doesn't matter much. – hazzey Mar 4 at 22:20

There was an episode of This Old House where they used it to make a patch of grass that could be driven over. They filled the holes with soil, and then put sod over the top. I'm not sure if this is the same product, but it looks very similar to what they used on the show.

According to the website of one of the manufacturers, it can support up to 65 tonnes of weight. That should be strong enough to support just about any kind of vehicle. Here is a link to the website.

It appears that the best application is to be used on paths that have light vehicle traffic, and/or grassy areas that can be occasionally driven over. Here is a link to their installation guide.

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I've seen pictures of that as well when looking them up online. It makes sense too. – TFK Mar 4 at 20:10

I haven't used it & only saw it here or there, but a whopping 1-minute of familiarization showed it has some pretty awesome claims. However, it would seem to be mostly for water management. If you need that then yeah go for it & I don't see why you wouldn't be able to plow snow off of it.

But, the problem I see is if you envision keeping the grid covered & unseen, you won't be successful even with an edge retainer. There's no place for the gravel to lock-in, so it will travel freely. The grid's use seems to intend that the grid remains visible.

One major flaw I imagine is ground settlement. If the ground washes away or you have large freeze heaving stones, the grid will rise or fall with its base. You'll no longer have something flat, & due to the grid you won't be able to keep a filling topper in place & high spots would require trimming the grid itself down.

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