Pavers are an amazing option for homeowners that want to create stunning and sturdy outdoor spaces. Brick pavers can be used for driveways, walkways, paths, and even patios. They can immediately enhance your property, making pavers an ideal option for anyone looking to improve their curb appeal and home value.
The key to creating beautiful and long-lasting outdoor areas using pavers is ensuring a proper and stable installation. If the individual pavers do not stay in place, this greatly detracts from the overall beauty and functionality of the entire paved surface.
As such, you’ll want to take note of these five crucial steps for stabilizing brick and other types of pavers.
Create a Stable Foundation
The first step is to create a strong paver base or foundation. A porous material should be laid down as the base to serve as the preliminary foundation layer. This is necessary to ensure the water drains through the pavers properly.
Porous or permeable materials are used to prevent standing water and other water issues. Standing or collected water underneath the pavers can cause cracks. It can also cause the soil to erode and cause the paver installation to collapse.
A paver installation company will often use sharp or coarse-edged materials. Examples of excellent paver base materials are:
- Crushed stone or rock
- Recycled concrete aggregate
A couple of inches of sand is also added on top of the crushed rock or gravel. All of these materials are then compacted firmly to ensure they stay in place and further strengthen the foundation.
Add Another Sand Bedding
Make sure to add another layer of sand on top of the firm, compacted base. Most Tampa pavers add around an inch more of sand to serve as a bedding for the pavers.
This allows paver installers to securely lay down the pavers without disturbing the solid foundation. Without a second sand bedding, there is a greater risk of making depressions on the compacted sand atop the base.
Moreover, this sand bedding provides another layer of support below the seams and pavers. They help prevent the sand that will later fill in the gaps between pavers from washing away and widening the spaces between each paver.
Fill in the Gaps Between Pavers
The sand used to fill in the gaps between pavers is necessary to lock each individual brick into place. This prevents the interlocking pavers from shifting and ruining the overall look of the paved surface.
Once all the pavers are properly laid out on top of the sand bedding, cover the entire area with more sand. Make sure to properly sweep the sand so that it goes in between the paver joints. Do this until all the paver joints or gaps are all filled with sand.
Many Tampa pavers use the same type of coarse, sharp-grained, and irregular sand they used for the base and bedding as joint fillers. The coarse and irregularly shaped grains of joint sand create friction between the pavers, which help them stay in place.
There are other types of sand that can be used as fillers, aside from joint sand.
Polymeric sand is widely used, as well, especially with new paver installations. This type of sand contains a mix of premium sand and polymeric powder. When polymeric sand comes into contact with water, it activates and starts to harden. This binds the pavers together and helps create optimal stability for the whole installation.
However, for homeowners interested in restoring and further stabilizing existing pavers, joint sand remains the best option. It has a shorter drying period and fewer absorption capabilities, which can improve the speed and efficiency of the restoration process.
Compact the Sand Joint Fillers
After repeatedly spreading and sweeping sand in between the paver joints, it is necessary to compact the whole paved surface again. It is also advised to compact the joint sand and pavers after each sand filling.
Repeatedly running a compacting machine shouldn’t disturb the whole paver installation. Instead, it helps ensure that the sand settles deep into the gaps. Doing so also makes sure that the pavers are securely embedded into the sand.
Seal the Brick Pavers
Once the pavers are all put into place and sufficiently sanded, it’s time to seal in the installation. For paver installations that used polymeric sand, this means using a garden hose and spraying the whole area.
Although only polymeric sand activates and solidifies to bind the pavers, all types of sand benefit from a generous spray of water. Instead of sealing the pavers, though, the water would instead help the sand settle more securely into the gaps. In these cases, allow the pavers to dry and check the gaps to ensure they are still full of sand and holding the pavers securely. If not, repeat the sanding and water sealing process.
If the gaps are properly dried and filled with enough sand, it is safe to use solvent-based sealers to bind the whole installation. Acrylic-based sealers require resealing every two to three years. Meanwhile, polyurethane sealers have a five to six-year lifespan.
Professional Installation for Greater Stability
Creating a stable paver foundation isn’t without its challenges. The same applies to ensuring optimal paver stability in each step of the installation.
For a stable, affordable, and professional paver installation in Tampa, contact us at Paver House today. Our highly experienced and dedicated paver installers can create elegant paver designs that would not only complement your home but last for years to come. If you have any questions, be sure to contact us today.