How to Install Patio Pavers
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Knowing how to install patio pavers is a great way to transform your exterior spaces. An outdoor space made with patio pavers can withstand heavy foot traffic and needs little maintenance. You can choose stone, travertine, brick or concrete pavers for your patio. They are also a good choice for a walkway, pool deck or other outdoor space.
Use this guide to learn how to install pavers for a beautiful, useful addition to your yard.
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Prepare the Patio Area
Laying pavers is a DIY project that takes about one weekend to complete. For your patio paver installation project, you'll make layers using these materials:
Use a tape measure to find the square footage of the area where you'll lay the patio. That will help you figure out how many stone patio pavers and how much paver base and paver sand you'll need. For example, for an area that measures 60 square feet, you’ll need about 60 12-inch x 12-inch paver stones.
You'll be using 4 inches of gravel, which is 1/3 of a yard, for a paver base. To figure out how many cubic feet of gravel you will need, multiply your square footage by 1/3. In this example, you'd need about 20 cubic feet of gravel, or 3/4 cubic yards. You may want more in case you spill some. You will also need a 1-inch thick layer of paver leveling sand. As a rule of thumb, you'll need about 1/3 as much sand as gravel, measured in cubic volume.
Check your calculations with our simple-to-use paver calculator.
Clear Out Grass and Soil
To get started on your paver installation, mark the perimeter of the patio area with marking paint. Drive garden stakes using a sledgehammer into the ground just outside the perimeter markings and attach a mason's line.
When figuring out how high to make the patio, work from the house outward. The pavers should slope away from the house with a drop-off of about 1 inch every 8 feet, so water can drain away. Mark the height on the stakes and adjust the mason's line.
Tip: Before you dig, remember that you will be adding 4 inches of gravel base and about 1 inch of paver sand before you add the DIY patio pavers.
Add Paver Base
Use a garden hose to lightly wet the paver base to make it more solid. Save time when you're working with a large area by using a plate compactor, a machine that compresses gravel and different kinds of soils.
Add and Level the Paver Sand
Place a length of electrical conduit on top of the base. The conduit will form “tracks” to help guide you when you level the paver sand.
Take out the conduit and fill the spaces with more paver sand. Level these areas before moving on. Continue this process until the entire patio area is covered with level paver sand.
Stay aware of your work area when you're leveling. If you step into an already level area, you'll have to rework that spot. Make sure you don't work yourself into a corner.
Place the Paver Stones
The next step in paver installation is laying pavers. Starting at a patio corner, lay out the paver stones one by one. Work as if you're starting at the tip of a triangle and working out.
When setting the stones, place them straight down into the sand and fit them together snugly. Make sure you're not dragging the pavers across the sand and never stomp a paver into place. Continue until all the pavers are in place.
Add Edging Stones or Paver Edging
Finish the Patio
Spread a light layer of paver sand over the entire area. Use a push broom to sweep the sand into the gaps between the pavers and run the plate compactor across the patio surface.
Add another thin layer of sand and use the push broom to spread it across the patio. Run the plate compactor over the area one last time.
Now that you know how to install pavers, you'll be able to complete similar projects in no time. Simply begin building a patio by measuring your outdoor space. Calculate how many pavers you'll need and dig up the soil. Compact your gravel, level your paver base and lay the pavers. Finish the job by using paver sand to fill any cracks.
If you plan on installing pavers for a patio just once, consider rental to get the job done. Use the tools once, then bring them back. Download The Home Depot Mobile App to find the tools you need.
Instead of taking on complex DIY projects yourself, prioritize efficiency and safety by seeking help from a Pro. Our experts possess the experience and tools necessary to complete your project on time, while ensuring all precautions are followed. Ready to have patio pavers installed? Get peace of mind from start to finish with a Pro Referral. Click here: Pro Referral
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