Constructing a driveway with pavers or installing patio pavers can enhance the look of your home and landscaping. Natural stone pavers are available in a variety of styles and colors to suit any design need.
When installing your patio or driveway pavers, it is important to begin with a good base material to keep your pavers appropriately supported and reduce risk of cracking or spreading apart of your pavers.
Here are three types of paver base options available:
- Sand Paver Base
A thick layer of sand beneath your pavers will provide flexible padding while enabling water to move pass through with ease – which is especially important in Florida’s often wet climate. Ideally, you should have a 4- to 6-inch layer of sand under your pavers for walkways and driveways or 8” to 12” for driveways. The sand should also be coarse and granular. Commonly, concrete sand or mason sand is used under outdoor pavers to prevent erosion or movement but when it comes to filling your outdoor paver joints, polymeric sand is best.
- Crushed Stone Paver Base
Generally crushed stone makes a strong foundation for pavers that will undergo heavy use and can support the weight of heavy outdoor furniture or grills. Your outdoor paver base should be about 10 inches below the surface and laid evenly and compacted. It is also recommended to used crushed stone as a paver base in coordination with polymeric sand. This combination will keep out weeds, reduce the risk of shifting or settling, and allow rain and moisture to pass through and soak into the ground (preventing erosion or the need to grade an incline).
- Compacted Soil Paver Base
Although this is not the most common of paver bases, laying outdoor pavers in dirt can be done, so long as special attention is taking to reduce the risk of shifting or sinking of the pavers. The area must be cleared of all grass and root systems and should be well compacted. If the soil base is dry or rather sandy, construction experts recommend mixing cement powder to firm the base and then compact it. A polymeric sand should be used in the joints of the pavers to keep the pavers from separating.