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Installing Patio Pavers

Pavers are basically pre-cast pieces of concrete or brick that are used for exterior landscaping. When these are installed on your patio, they give a completely different look. Here are some instructions for the installation process.
Gardenerdy Staff
Last Updated: Aug 16, 2018
Pavers Leading Right
A paver is a pre-cast piece of concrete or brick. Generally, it is used for exterior landscaping. When installed over a compact stone sub-base and a leveling bed of sand, these concrete paving stones can be used in walkways, patios, pool decks, driveways, and so on. These can enhance the look of your patio.
Installation
Using a mallet to set paver
  • First things first, a plan is very important for projects like these. A clear and good plan will go a long way in making such an endeavor a success.

  • After gathering the required materials, you will need to outline the concerned area. Don't forget to get some extra pavers.
  • Outline the area using a string or garden hose. Drive stakes for holding the outline firmly in its place and for making clean corners.

  • For avoiding water pooling, they need to be slightly above the surface of the ground.
  • While you plan the slope, start with the tentatively highest point. That point would most probably be the closest to your house.

  • If the project area is uneven, then you would have to even it out.

  • Spaces which only have foot traffic, require 4 to 6 inch base material.
  • After consulting a building supply store, anticipate how deep the base needs to be and add 1.5 inch for the sand layer. The total depth of the base, the sand, and the pavers will determine the depth of the excavation area.

  • Measure the depth of the area using the string used to track the slope.
  • Now, lay the base which will comprise coarse, crushed stones. Do not add more than two inches at a time.

  • Flatten and compact it by using a hand tamper or a plate compactor. Repeat this and the earlier step until you get the desired base depth.

  • If you make a base outside the boundary of the projected area, it will add stability.
  • After you are done with this, set up the edge restraints, which will hold the shape of the project for a long period of time. These are mostly made of plastic, steel, or aluminum.

  • Follow it up by laying a layer of sand. Sand acts as a glue to hold the pavers in place. Spread the sand smoothly and uniformly over the depth of 1 inch or 1½ inches.
  • In case the area is large, you would need to lay down 1 inch screed pipes and then pour the sand between them. Screed the sand in sections of 50 to 100 feet each. After removing the pipes, fill the gap with more sand.

  • Lay the pavers properly in the sand. Never slide them along the ground or kick them into place, as that would disturb the sand.
  • Generally, between two pavers, you would need to leave a symmetrical gap.

  • Keep a check on the level of the pavers.

  • Use a plate compactor and run it over them, once the task of installation is complete. This will ensure that they are snugly placed into the sand.
  • Now, use a slightly finer sand and fill the joints between them. Simply pour and sweep them in the cracks till they are totally filled. This locks them in place and so make sure that the sand is dry.

  • Finally, seal the pavers with a sealant that will prevent the growth of weed.
Garden
Though the task of installation seems to be difficult or time-consuming, it can certainly enhance the exteriors of your home.