Do you want to install a basketball court in your backyard? If you and your family love sports, a custom basketball court can be the perfect way to spend time together and enjoy the outdoors. A custom court can also offer more room than a driveway provides, giving you a more realistic game-like experience. One of your biggest decisions will be what type of surface you want to use. You have a few different options, but you'll likely want something that can withstand the elements, will provide a smooth playing experienced, and fits in your budget. Here are four popular surfaces for outdoor basketball courts:
Hard-packed gravel. This may be the least expensive option, but it's also going to provide the least consistent playing experience. Hard-packed gravel is made of small pebbles and rocks that are tightly packed together to mimic a hard surface. It will stand up well to the elements, although you may need add new gravel every couple of years because some of the gravel could wash away in the rain. The biggest problem is that the surface isn't completely smooth. The ball could take unexpected bounces, which may make the game frustrating at times.
Concrete. This is a very popular options. If you go with concrete, your court will very much resemble a concrete driveway or sidewalk. However, the court is likely to receive much less stress or pressure than a driveway, so you should expect it to last longer. Concrete can chip and crack if it's regularly exposed to water, so that is one possible risk. Also, your concrete will have expander joints and seams running through it. It is possible that the ball could take a funny bounce if it hits those seams.
One big benefit of concrete is that it fits in well with almost any aesthetic. Also, you can have the concrete pre-mixed with colors to give your court a custom appearance.
Asphalt. This is another common surface for outdoor basketball courts. Asphalt is inexpensive, easy to install, and it stands up well to the elements. You can't get asphalt in custom colors. However, you can paint it in any style you'd like. Another major benefit of using asphalt is that it will likely provide the smoothest playing surface. There are no seams, joints, or loose stones, so you'll be able to dribble with a consistent feel.
Brick pavers. Although not a common surface for basketball courts, this could give your court a unique appearance. The surface will be slightly uneven as there will be small gaps between each paver. You also wouldn't be able to paint the court because the paint would be very uneven. However, you could get different colored pavers and lay them out in a way to mimic a three-point line and other court elements.
Talk to a paving contractor (such as one from http://www.phend-brown.com) about your options. They can recommend the best surface solution for your goals and budget.