If you are interested in constructing a driveway of paving in your home, one of the options you can consider trying out is the use of concrete pavers to get the job done. In a nutshell, concrete pavers are concrete blocks that are designed in such a manner that they can interlock with each other. Installing them is usually easy, since it only involves arranging the pavers in the correct manner and then using coarse sand to create friction between each of them so that they don’t come apart.
When you witness the installation of concrete paving, you may not be confident about how well it can hold up since it usually looks like simply placing the blocks on the ground. However, one of the major benefits of such paving is the fact that they last very long, and can bear huge weights as well. It’s also easy to repair them as well. For instance, if one of the blocks becomes damaged, you can simply remove that one block and then replace it with another one.
The simple concept behind installation of concrete pavers often hides the fact that there is a strategy that one would need to use when installing them. This is why you should always insist on using the services of a qualified contractor to install them. The steps that are usually needed in the construction of concrete pavers include:
Demolition of the current driveway or paving
The first step in installation is creating room for the paving. This is done by getting rid of the current paving, or clearing the area you want to install the paving in. Typically, it is recommended that you do the demolition of the depth of around 7 inches to make enough room for the paving blocks. There are times when this process will be difficult, such as when the initial driveway or paving was made of stone. It’s much easier to consult a professional for the removal, since they usually have the tools and expertise to get this done more easily.
Compaction of the base
One of the most important factors determining the quality of the end product is the quality of the base you put it on. Once the area has been cleared, you will need to compact the ground to make it firm enough to withstand the weight of the paving as well as any other objects that might be above it such as a car. If the base is not strong enough, some areas might end up sinking, and this means that the aesthetic effect will be compromised. In addition to that, the presence of such areas will also lead to accumulation of water, which may end up damaging the paving if left stagnant for long.
Once the bas has been compacted, the surface is then prepared for the placing of the concrete blocks. Installation of the base is normally done by use of various sizes of gravel. It is important to use certified base when doing this, since this offers the best support for the paving. If you use only gravel that has large particles in it, it might end up moving about when subjected to too much force from above.
Once the base is in place, it is covered with an inch of fine sand. This is the actual surface on which the blocks will be placed.
Installation of restraints
It’s important to remember that such pavers are essentially held together by friction and nothing else. If you arrange the blocks in the manner described above and leave the sides unrestrained, they are likely to fall out of place easily. The last step in the installation process therefore involves installing the restraints around the paving to avoid this. There are many types of restraints you can use depending on your circumstances, including wood, plastic and concrete ones.
The next step after this would be to compact the pavers. Sand is forced between each of the pavers to ensure that the contact between each of them is tight. This is a process that has to be carried out using specialized equipment. A vibrating plate compactor is the most commonly used machine for this.
These are just some of the steps that need to be carried out during the installation of concrete paver. It’s important that each process be taken seriously, and that the right skill and tools are used to carry it out. This way, the end result will not only be more aesthetically pleasing, but it will also last much longer without having to require major maintenance.
The only way to ensure that this gets done is by consulting a high quality contractor who has enough experience in using the pavers. Not only will they have the skill to pull it off, but will also have the right equipment as well.