In urban and suburban landscaping, pavers are modular units of pre-cast concrete or bricks that fit snugly together to create large areas of hard-surface paving. These interlocking pieces are formed from a mix of fine- and coarsely-grained sand and cement compounds to produce a durable concrete that is then molded into different shapes and designs.
Advantages over conventional paving:
Interlocking concrete pavers can be used for practically any kind of paving requirement. Compared to conventional paving materials, concrete pavers are valued for their attractiveness, low maintenance, and ease of replacement. When used on streets and sidewalks, interlocking concrete pavers are superior in strength and durability compared to poured concrete.
Interlocking concrete pavers can dress up a well-laid out patio or backyard. An extremely diverse range of unit concrete pavers lets you stretch your imagination to come up with a unique design that fits your home. The result is a comfortable place to play, barbecue, or simply relax in the sun and shade.
Concrete pavers can act as a “zipper” in the pavement. When underground repairs are needed, interlocking concrete pavements can easily be removed and replaced. No need for jackhammers on the surface and less construction equipment is required. In addition, no curing means faster repairs with reduced user delays and related costs. The process of reusing the same paving units is called reinstatement.
A variety of applications:
- Pedestrian pavers – for patios, walkways, sidewalks, curb ramps, plazas, tree pits, fountains, swimming pools and roof plaza decks
- Vehicular pavers – for driveways, parking lots, crosswalks, roads, railroad crossings, parking garages, bridge decks, ports and airports
- Permeable interlocking concrete pavements (PICP) – comprised of a layer of concrete pavers separated by joints filled with small stones. This type of paving allows water to flow through an open-graded base such as crushed stone layers with no fine particles. The base filters rainwater, reducing pollutants before releasing the water into the soil substrate.
- Concrete grid pavements or “green parking lots” – use perforated concrete units as pavement. These grids allow grass to grow between paving stones and helps reduce the urban heat island and regulate storm-water runoff from impervious surfaces.
Ease of installation:
Interlocking paving stones are installed over a base of compacted stone and a leveling bed of sand. Instead of pouring grout between the pavers, sand particles are spread over them and tamped down. The sand stabilizes the interlocking pavers, yet allows for some flexibility. This type of flexible installation allows the pavers to shift slightly, allowing the pavement to absorb stresses such as small earthquakes, freezes and thaws, and slight ground erosion. The pavement will not crack or buckle like concrete, although bad weather may cause potholes. The sand does not wash out easily with rain and a sealant can be spread on to further hold the sand.
Care and maintenance:
When properly installed, interlocking concrete pavements are very low maintenance and provide an attractive paved surface for decades. However, as is common to all surfaces, pavers can be exposed to dirt, stains and wear under foot and vehicular traffic.
Care and maintenance of pavers include removal of stains and cleaning, plus joint stabilization or sealing if required. Stains on specific areas should be removed first. A cleaner should then be used to remove any efflorescence and dirt from the entire pavement. This can be an opportune time to apply joint sand stabilizers or seal the newly cleaned pavement.
For more answers to your questions regarding pavers, contact Freedom Restoration at 410-451-7110 or click here.