While resin bound and resin bonded driveways have similar names, it might surprise you to know that they’re very different. Both paving systems use resin and aggregates (stones) to form a fixed surface, but there are plenty more differences than there are similarities.
Resin bound driveways are made from a resin and aggregate mix that is trowelled onto a bitmac or concrete base. It leaves a smooth, flat finish and you won’t find any loose gravel. It’s also a pourous surface, which means that rainwater can pass through into the ground, avoiding pools and flooding.
However, resin bonded driveways involve spreading resin across a base, then scattering aggregate into it. Most of the stones will stick to the resin, but some will stay loose. That means you’ll get the effect of loose gravel without so much to sweep and take care of. Because the stones are scattered onto a complete layer of resin, water can’t pass through it. That means you could end up with water pooling, and it also means that a resin bonded driveway isn’t frost resistant, meaning it could get slippery.
So which is better – a resin bound or resin bonded driveway? The answer depends on a few things. If you have a period property where a smooth, shiny surface might not complement the look of your home, you might want to go for resin bonded. If you need lots of grip, for example if you’re a wheelchair user, resin bonded may also be the way to go – even though resin bound surfaces still offer enough grip for sloped driveways and ramps. But if you want a low-maintenance, weed-free, permeable surface, resin bound driveways are the way to go.