PATIO PAVERS – KNOW YOUR OPTIONS
With fall approaching, it’s time to say goodbye to scorching sunny days and hello to cool, refreshing evenings. Backyard barbeques, bonfires, roasting marshmallows, watching the leaves change color, and enjoying the nice weather with family and friends are just a few of the joys of outdoor living. Patios and fire pits make for the perfect space to experience the changing season. As this long, hot summer comes to an end, now is the perfect time to prepare for fall fun.
Patio pavers are incredibly versatile and allow for many design and layout options. They can be used for steps, pathways, patios, driveways, or to surround pools. Patio pavers are typically made from concrete, clay, or stone. With so many options, it’s beneficial to know all the choices before starting the design process.
Concrete pavers can look like concrete or be dyed and molded to look like cobblestone, flagstone, bricks, etc. Concrete allows for endless designs, since it can be poured into any shape. Some use concrete pavers to create geometric or abstract shapes rather than typical rectangles. Concrete is usually one of the cheaper options when it comes to patios. It is durable and will hold up through most weather conditions, although it is subject to cracking due to freeze-thaw cycles.
Stone pavers can be made from a multitude of stones, such as marble, travertine, limestone, granite, bluestone, and more. After being quarried, the stone is cut to standard sizes and thickness. Stone pavers come in earthy colors, as they cannot be dyed.
For a natural stone look, flagstone is usually the way to go. Flagstone is sedimentary rock, typically sandstone, that is cut into flat, irregular pieces. Since it’s not altered after being quarried, the earthy colors vary depending on where it’s from and what substances formed it. While the finished product is stunning, flagstone is heavy and hard to work with. Patios made of this material require adequate drainage because the stone is subject to erosion and splitting.
Clay brick patios give a traditional and symmetrical feel. Bricks come in several different colors, the most popular being red. They hold their color very well over time. Installing brick patios is easy due to their size. While designs are usually symmetrical, many layout options can be achieved.
Composite pavers are made by reusing scraps of plastic and rubber. When being manufactured, they use less energy and release less carbon. Another benefit is that composite pavers are substantially lighter than concrete pavers.