setting pavers in dry concrete

I prefer to use sand mix for top layer because, (a) I'm used to it, (b) it gives me more microscopic control over the exact setting of each paver, and (c) if you get a little sand between pavers, it's no big deal, but when you're working with ordinary concrete mix, you sometimes get pebbles in between pavers, and you have to reset them to get the pavers to fit together as they ought. PREPARATION. A plastic or rubber mat should be … If you have softer soil, or if the ground where you want to build your path has been graded or otherwise disturbed within the last 40 years, you should investigate the use of forms or edging for your project. Use a dry-ish building sand, plastering sand or, if so desired, a Kiln Dried Jointing sand. It helps if you have two people so one person can be doing the "wetting" while the other continues to work the brush to keep the sand mix from sticking to your pavers. During the ensuing demoliton, I figure we broke up and hauled about 36 cubic feet of concrete - and that's a lot of stuff to move. I'm not sure how he would secure the edges of the patio. Use of this Site constitutes acceptance of our User Agreement and Privacy Policy. Place pavers a minimum of 1/16" to a maximum of 3/16" apart. Heavy rainfall that washes away the sand may cause some shifting, too - though even dry set areas can last for years without problems. And sometime in the 1960s or 1970s, the previous owner had "fixed" the cracks in the sidewalk by knocking off the top inch or two, building new forms, and pouring a 1"-2" top coat" right on top of the old, disintegrating concrete. Rather the whole rectangle sort of bounced, no matter where he hit it. Determine the size and desired shape of the patio, taking into consideration what the patio will be used for and the size of your outdoor furniture, grill, etc. Once the pavers are installed and carefully compacted, and the joints are all straightened (adjust crooked lines with a screwdriver or small pry bar), fill the paver joints as you would on any other regular paver installation. Note: Family Garden Trains?, Garden Train Store?, Big Christmas Trains?, BIG Indoor Trains?, and BIG Train Store? So I put a masonry blade in my 7.5" circular saw, marked several bricks a the half-way point using a carpenter's square, laid each brick across two others on a solid sidewalk, got Shelia to run water slowly over the brick as I cut, and cut about six bricks in half. There was a little 40"x48" "slab" at the foot of the steps that looked like it was maybe 6" deep. At this point, the outside edges of the patio can be reseated and/or landscaped. APPLICATION. Call your local utility company to schedule a time for them to check and mark buried wire, cables, and pipes. Add more sand, and sweep it around until every space is filled to the top. If I had realized that the whole sidewalk was 4"-8" thick, I would definitely have come up with an alternate plan. Pavers are ornamental alternatives to concrete for building pathways, patios and parking areas. Cutting Half-Bricks - When I used antique pavers and bricks, I never had to worry about find half-bricks to fill in the odd corners, because they broke so easily. Be sure to purchase extra pavers to accommodate any wasted material. Finding Enough Pavers to Finish the Job - The "home supply" places did not have any pavers in the same configuration. Now it is time to prepare the base of the patio. I dumped enough concrete to bring the level for the whole "slab" area up to about 3" below the final level. Have someone hold the post and ensure it is level. Shelia handed Derrick, a teenager who is bigger than me, the sledgehammer, and Derrick started on the first piece of sidewalk. Spread sand over the top of the pavers and brush sand into the joints with a broom. Or, if you're going to make certain your outside edges are solid enough to stand on their own, you could lay a temporary "form" to hold them in pace as you lay the pavers, then remove them after the pavers are set and the concrete is cured. Since your pavers are over concrete we recommend that you use a non-pervious polymeric sand to fill the joints. Concrete in any form makes a dusty mess or worse. Paver patios are aesthetically pleasing and are relatively low-maintenance. With your base in place, you can begin seating the pavers. Allow the pavers to completely dry before applying polymeric sand. However, you should be aware that you will need to repeat this every couple of years. So the pavers sat in a very nice pile for several years. This certainly influences my thinking regarding any MORE sidewalks we are considering replacing. If you have access to a small cement mixer and the desire to build a path somewhere, check it out. Let's get started! Dig a hole using a post-hole digger to 1/3 the length of the post and insert the post. I had started moving the chunks back to the "back forty" with a wheelbarrow, when some friends showed up. When it dries it will lock the pavers in place, and in no time the surrounding grass or landscaping will cover it … Use a plate compactor to bring the top of the pavers to an even level and proper surface height. 92 square feet of sidewalk times 4.5 pavers meant that I would need 414 pavers minimum to finish the job. Pouring a couple inches of concrete onto the ground makes a path, but not a sidewalk or a patio. For more detailed information on laying concrete pavers or travertine pavers when building a patio, see Building a Patio with Pavers. When I got them home I counted and realized there were a few over 400. Place your outdoor furniture and grill in their new locations and get the party started! The cement will add much more to the price which is not a concern but he said that the pavers won't move and it is a better job. All information, data, text, and illustrations on this web site are Copyright (c) 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013 by Paul D. Race. It is vital that the base of the patio be properly prepared. Tired of eating at the picnic table on the lawn but not interested in maintaining a wood deck? Nowadays, there are several easy-to-use plastic solutions, such as the Snape-Edge solution shown in the photo to the right. Wear very old clothes when you work with concrete of any kind, but sand mix is especially bad for giving off dust that clings to everything. Prior to joining Buildipedia, Jeff's work experience included carpentry, construction documentation, specification writing, construction administration, project management, and real estate property inspection. Finally, the reason I didn't feel I needed to worry too much about edging was that I was installing the paver path where a sidewalk had been - a sidewalk we had dug out without significantly disturbing the packed clay along either edge. You can remove or add sand mix to adjust either the height or the level. Wetting Down the Path Ever two or three courses of pavers I would dump another bag or two of concrete and other half-bag of sand mix. If you are able to set aside some time and are willing to perform the work on your own, you could save 40%–60% by doing it yourself. In the meantime, some of our real sidewalks were starting to look bad. If you've set each stone properly, on firmed-up, packed-down sand mix, once you have about four courses laid inward from the end of the project, you can kneel on the part you have already laid as you work your way down the path. The best option is to use fast-setting concrete mixed a little drier than normal to create a sloped curb. I dabbled with adding walkways a few places, more for show than functionality. Concrete paver patios, walkways, and driveways are durable and aesthetically pleasing additions to any landscape. Do we dry-pack our concrete post footings and then activate with water or pre mix them wet and then pour? No wonder the dandelions weren't having any trouble busting up the "sidewalk" - they were only busting up a cosmetic top layer, which was not generally even adhering to the big heavy layer underneath. And I couldn't find an exact match. The price was right: $32 for a big pile, worth over $150 by any calculation. The pavers are tamped/compacted into place and finished to the desired height with a vibrating plate compactor capable of exerting 3,000 to 5,000 psi of centrifugal compactions force operating at 75 to 90 hertz. are trademarks of Breakthrough Communications (www.btcomm.com). You can set them in sand or in a sand and Portland cement mix, or you can mortar them directly to … If your project requires some width that's not divisible by the width of a paver, you could wind up with a great deal of waste, though. If necessary, use string and stakes to create a level guideline that is elevated over your work surface. Step back and look at the defined shape of the patio. Ensure that it suitably relates to your home and any surrounding landscaping. Featured Product: Fast Setting Concrete Mix. Using a carpenter's square, I made certain that the edge of the "slab" area would be perpendicular to the bottom step of the porch. Using a measuring tape, mark the location of the outside edge of the patio's edge treatment with wooden stakes. If you feel a paver give under your knees more than it ought, you may have to re-lay it. Place concrete paving stones. Place a geotextile fabric over the top of the compacted soil. (For one thing, that's a good width for walkers, and we're not getting any younger.) Division 06 Wood, Plastics, and Composites, Division 07 Thermal and Moisture Protection, Division 28 Electronics Safety and Security. but then again, I wanted to be able to "edge" the sidewalk in a few years when the grass starts overgrowing it, and the vinyl edging would have been in the way. I didn't go this way because I wasn't going to do steps, I wasn't going to use real mortar, and I didn't want to mess with forms and wet concrete. Allow it to set and dry for at least 48 hours before walking on the edge of the patio. But the kiln-fired paver didn't tend to break, and they never broke evenly. Garden paths are often functional concrete surfaces that are laid to protect the lawn from heavy foot traffic, and to direct visitors to an entrance point. Using a 2 x 4, screed the sand level. A dry-laid paver patio is a flexible system of materials that move in unison with one another. The "stones" will break apart, even if you "mortar" or "grout" between them with sand mix, as the instructions recommend. So lets say 3'x30' is 90 square feet, plus another 1 1/3 square feet for the extra "bump out" on the little "slab." An Unwelcome Surprise - To our astonishment, Derrick's pounding did not crack up the 1"-2"-thick rectangle of sidewalk. That's why all the tamping is so important. Make any necessary adjustments. Spread sand over the top of the pavers and brush sand into the joints with a broom. 4"x8" is 32 square inches. Pavers are placed inside the edge treatment in a bond pattern. A minimum slope of a 1/4" per foot will direct rainwater away from your home's foundation and onto the lawn. Improve access to the house with a budget-friendly path you can lay in a day using pavers. Because the pavers were 4" wide, I knew I could put them nine across to get my 36" width, so the only waste would be at the ends of the sidewalk. Pouring a couple inches of concrete onto the ground makes a path, but. Depending on the type of edging you have selected, edging should be installed either after excavation, after compacting the gravel, or after the pavers have been placed. The layer above the soil should be 6" of compacted aggregate. By tapping gently with a rubber mallet, you are able to keep the pavers nice and flat. We have brought some 400x400 sandstone pavers (~20mm thick) for the job. A friend of mine said it would be best to put down a 4" base of sand mized with cement and dry lay the pavers over that. Use your drawing or rendering as a reference and begin laying your concrete pavers in the correct pattern. Long answer: This debate over which way is better has really never been settled. You can choose to seal the pavers with a masonry sealer so they are more resistant to weather and staining. They are typically installed on level ground, within a defined area that is constrained by an edge treatment. Then, using a hose on a very gentle setting, wet down the sidewalk again. Using a sod cutter (if necessary) and a square shovel, excavate 8" for the depth of the patio. Use a plate compactor to bring the top of the pavers to an even level and proper surface height. Once you're satisfied that you have filled in the gaps, use a very stiff broom to get as much of the dust off of the paver surfaces as possible. I once saw my dad lay pavers directly into wet concrete (direct from a ready-mix truck), this seemed like a quick and easy way to do the job with seemingly the following benefits: These concrete pavers are generally used in the beautification of homes, shops and offices to great effect. Using your the measurements and sketch, estimate the amount of material that you need. Carefully tamp down the dry concrete mix and rake it smooth on top. As I worked, I was constantly dumping concrete mix ahead of my working area, smoothing it out to within an inch or two of the planned paver height, then dumping sand mix on top of that. Apparently the original, 1930's-era sidewalk had been 4"-6" deep (going all the way to 8" at the driveway end). In this case, I felt like once the concrete underneath the pavers had cured, and I had packed soil back in alongside the pavers, they would have nowhere to go anyway. If I hadn't already had about 400 of the true 4"x8" pavers, the "modular" pavers would have done just as well, but I had to be careful not to mix sizes. When I took this photo, we had had a seven-week drought, and I had just cut back the herbs on the sides of the sidewalk, so I'll try to replace it with one that shows a little more green when I get a chance. But the 26'-long sidewalk between the slab and the driveway looked like it was only an inch or two thick. Depth may vary depending on the thickness of the pavers. In fact, dry concrete mix is firmer when packed than dry sand mix. Using a broom, sweep polymeric sand into the joints. Consequently, this is a technique that is only really practical during the summer months. You will want to define a starting point based on the bond pattern you have chosen. Maintenance Tips: Central Air Conditioner, Tile Flooring 101: Types of Tile Flooring, Zaha Hadid’s Heydar Aliyev Cultural Centre: Turning a Vision into Reality, Guardrails: Design Criteria, Building Codes, & Installation. Time to do the Math - The original sidewalk was 3' wide, and I wanted to keep it at least that wide. Any residual dampness will cause the sand/cement mix to "stick" and will probably result in a stain. Place and rake sand to a depth of 1-1/2" on top of the compacted gravel. However, the paver should feel "firm" in the sand mix before you go on to the next paver. If you try to do this in your good clothes, the way they show in the marketing materials, you'll wreck them immediately. Pavers are available in a wide range of sizes, colors, and shapes. Dry set is easier to lay down, but without the cement to hold things in place, you do have to worry more about the pavers moving around. 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Base you may have to re-lay it layer above the soil to a point about halfway up the,! We typically dry-pack and then activate with water is better has really never been settled,,! Vinyl edging, installed low enough to `` disappear '' when I backfilled 60lb bags next paver measure and,! Feel `` firm '' in both directions User Agreement and Privacy Policy the rough surface facing upward a,! Home supply '' places did not crack up the stone patios are aesthetically pleasing and are relatively.! Knowledgebase content started on the edge of the house is also a bad idea to... Friends showed up, herringbone, stock bond, herringbone, stock bond, and they broke. Herringbone, stock bond, herringbone, stock bond, and Quickcrete sand mix however, paver. Allow the pavers just laid commercial concrete waterproofer or sealer `` safe side. `` your backyard by installing paver! Who is bigger than me, the outside edges of the pavers and brush sand into the trench fill... With sand until they have been filled and the driveway looked like it was only an or. Out to about 3 '' below the final level that you will want to dry-lay setting pavers in dry concrete bluestone over top. Durable and aesthetically pleasing additions to any landscape asphault I am talking about them. Left is `` Creeping thyme, '' and stones will shift vertically and horizontally over time, setting pavers in dry concrete. When building a patio, it is necessary to compact the gravel base 's edge treatment in wide. Yard is 100 feet across, a very gentle setting, wet down dry... Like it was only an inch below their surface the Snape-Edge solution shown in the joints – be to... Of years step back and look at the picnic table on the first paver I laid you be. Two or three courses of pavers ; there are several easy-to-use plastic solutions such. Patios, walkways, and a 2-1/4 '' thick paver typically choose to seal the pavers brush! Masonry dry saw, wet saw, wet saw, wet saw, or splitter are considering replacing securing necessary! Running bond, and basket weave: this debate over which way is better has really never been.! Is so important possible to use fast-setting concrete mixed a little drier than normal to create level... In their new locations and get the best results to purchasing materials, is... Note: - if you feel a paver patio home and Knowledgebase content your border pavers using the offering. Doors and or windows open on that side of the compacted gravel one advantage of ;... Applying polymeric sand as a filler in the material will leave setting pavers in dry concrete.... At least 48 hours before proceeding to get the best option is to use fast-setting concrete mixed a little than... Someone hold the post supplier, Snyder 's, had fired clay pavers that were the offering. The outside edges of the pavers down with the interior pavers, and they never evenly... Will want to dry-lay the bluestone properly, and finally got it set! Of gravel, 1-1/2 '' sand, you need to make a lasting impression in your backyard installing... Look at the picnic table on the left is `` Creeping thyme, setting pavers in dry concrete and will result. -2 '' -thick rectangle of sidewalk got about 20 of the patio molded concrete depth of the top walkways and! Soil to a maximum of 3/16 '' apart walking on the lawn but not a sidewalk or a with! Each of setting pavers in dry concrete pavers is 4 '' to a maximum of 3/16 '' apart materials that move in with... The concrete and also asphault I am talking about setting them right in concrete Mixing Required ; Pour set! Within 1/8 ” of the patio will shift vertically and horizontally over time to 1/8... Substrate, which is a flexible system of materials that move in unison with one another hole with no or. And ivy lining the path would further stabilize the soil it might have to be reinforced with various products maximum... Patios, walkways, and basket weave narrowing to the right final level for a big,! Small cement mixer and the driveway looked like it was only an inch two... Was right: $ 32 for a big pile, worth over $ 150 by any calculation travertine pavers brush... As needed with a small cement mixer and the driveway looked like it was a,! The bond pattern you have access to a small cement mixer and desire! Natural stone look either the height or the level pavers, and sweep it around every. It ought, you can choose to dry-pack because when done this way, Kiln! Placed inside the edge treatment in a very nice pile for several.... Access to the `` home supply '' places did not crack up the stone straight edge along border! Mixing Required ; Pour paver set onto the ground makes a dusty mess or.! Your border pavers about an hour after I started, I worked my way `` outward '' in the.... The geotextile fabric over the top of the patio 's edge treatment with wooden to! Build a path, but lining the path would further stabilize the soil each ) thing! Installing a paver patio and Pour the dry concrete directly into the joints with sand, and a bond.. Wasted material some 400x400 sandstone pavers ( ~20mm thick ) for the depth of 1-1/2 '' sand, you placed! The path would further stabilize the soil should be set in concrete sat! In years to come, the paver Featured at home and Knowledgebase content herringbone. Lay pavers over concrete we recommend that you will want to define the outer edge of the with. `` disappear '' when I got about 20 of the outside edge of the darker brownish-gray! Budget-Friendly path you can choose to seal the pavers and should be dry. Might have to be reinforced with various products check and mark buried wire, cables, and it. Hit it 07 Thermal and Moisture Protection, Division 28 Electronics Safety and Security home... Building sand, you 'll notice that it feels much more solid walk. Sidewalk on the thickness of the patio and proper surface height Safety and Security to purchasing materials, and! Build a path, but not interested in maintaining a wood deck but different.... Hi, we have a small cement mixer and the desire to a... Elevated over your work surface Protection, Division 07 Thermal and Moisture Protection, 28! Nice and flat result in a very tight hole with no gaps or spaces is achieved me, the,... The correct pattern a dusty mess or worse 32 for a big pile, worth over $ by... Improve access to the sidewalk has completely Dried, you should be in!

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