Lambert Bros. Paving

residental asphalt driveway

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"We were happy with the job and will call Lambert Bros. Paving again."

Trevor Ash
H. Ash and Associates
Cochrane, Alberta


Tips on Selelecting a Contractor

Lambert Bros. Paving (Calgary)'s goal is to promote and raise the professional standards in the paving industry to benefit customers and the community through sound and ethical business practices.

On relatively small paving jobs such as residential driveways, parking lots, or condo units it is very important that a reputable, competent contractor be chosen. And, since private homeowners generally do not have the experience or technical expertise that many larger contractors have at their disposal to control the project, these tips may be helpful toward selecting a reliable paving company and obtaining the best possible work.

Start asking the tough questions of contractors and improve your chances of choosing a reputable contractor who will perform a quality job the first time.

The following is to be used as a reference tool for anyone responsible for making maintenance decisions

1. Select a contractor known for high-quality work and that has an established reputation in the community.

As a customer, you should be assured of the following basics requirements in order to know the contractors are reputable:

  • Listing in the phone book
  • Insurance Certificate
  • Job pictures and locations
  • Warranty/Guarantee
  • Testimonials

As a customer, these are great but not enough. Almost any contractor today can produce these items. The mark of the good versus the best is found by asking more probing questions. Consider for example:

  • Training of company personnel on application of product - look for evidence that workers are experienced - ask how employees are trained or selected.
  • Definition of quality for all products and services they offer. Do you know what to look for to determine what makes one job better than another?
  • Knowledgeable sales personnel that provide clear options and benefits of different approaches to repairs.
  • Communication process with client.
  • Customer Service.
  • Traffic control process.
  • Look for an established company that's been in business for awhile.
  • Check the Better Business Bureau (
  • Find out if the company stays abreast of new techniques and developments.
  • See if the company provides any value-added client services. What can you expect before and/or after the job?

2. Obtain proposals from more than one contractor and ensure that all are bidding on the same type and quantity of asphalt mix. This way you can make a fair comparison.

  • Do bids clearly identify the same type of product/service to be used?
  • What is estimated time frame to complete the work (e.g. will it take one firm longer and cause greater disturbance to your company)?
  • Type of equipment used on the job? (E.g. for the type of asphalt that is made in Calgary, does the contractor use proper rollers, i.e. rubber tires, vibratory, 2 tons minimum for 2".
  • Scrutinize the lowest bid very carefully. When it comes to materials and workmanship, you often get what you pay for.

3. Be sure that the thickness of the asphalt agreed upon is the compacted thickness. Asphalt is first laid by a paving machine (ex. 2.5 inches) and then compacted by a roller (2 inches).

4. Ask for the contractor's WCB account number, then call to confirm that it is up to date. If they do not have one and someone gets hurt, guess who's responsible.

5. Visit other paving sites by the paving company and talk with the owners of the projects. The pavement surface should look uniform, smooth, and not have puddles.

6. Insist on a written contract or agreement, in addition to any guarantee offered by the paving contractor. If possible, make provision to retain some portion of the payment due the contractor until there is complete satisfaction with the quality of the finished driveway.

It is no secret that some contractors may resort to unscrupulous methods to insure that work is awarded to them.

Make no mistake, it is happening! We do a lot of maintenance work around Calgary and see first hand some of the paving transgression committed in our industry. For example:

  • Quoting unnecessary work
  • Quoting work that is not cost-effective
  • Quoting or completing work below the acceptable standards set by the pavement industry
  • Completing work below the agreed upon specifications
  • Applying inferior materials
  • Poor workmanship

Remember that it is up to you to make sure that the contractor is actually complying to work specifications. Every contractor will claim they will/are, however, to ensure that you get what you pay for, it is recommended that all work be inspected and monitored as it is being performed.

There are many excellent paving contractors in Calgary, and we would like to thank you for taking the time to consider Lambert Bros. Paving.


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