Permeable Patio Pavers - Laying The Pavers - Buddha Builders

How To Prepare And Install Your Permeable Paver Patio

A paved area, when done correctly is a long-lasting and hard-wearing solution for flooring, especially outdoors. It can withstand the elements and hold up under far more weight than concrete.

Permeable pavers drain water, so your patio won’t flood in the wet seasons and they don’t attract as much dust too. Plus, it’s more aesthetically pleasing than plain concrete.

However, there are a few things to consider before installing pavers, because if they are not done correctly, you lose out on the benefits of a paved patio.

Follow These Steps To Prep And Install Permeable Pavers For Your Patio

Step 1: Prepare the Ground

It seems fairly obvious, but you don’t want to miss out on this step. First things first, you have to scope out the area. Make sure you and your builders have the area for the permeable paver patio demarcated and planned out before doing anything.

heavy equipment on project

Once you’ve marked off the area, it’s important to square the corners and make sure the lines are straight (there’s nothing worse than having an oddly shaped paved patio)

Next, the patio builders will clear all roots and rubble from the sand sub-base. They will dampen and slightly level the ground before going in with the big guns – a compactor that is. If the area is going to be a high-traffic area, it’s best to go in with a mechanical compactor. If not, the ground can be leveled manually.

Pro Tip: the sub-base should be at least 2 inches thick for the best results.

Step 2: Prepare the Sand

Your ground has been compacted, now it’s time to finish off the sand. It’s essential to level the sand properly at this stage.

The best way to do this is to lay two boards, either timber or metal (must be flat and square). Then, your builders should run a screed board with a spirit level across the sand to make sure everything is absolutely level.

Step 3: Laying the Pavers

Finally, it’s time to lay the pavers! It’s a good idea to start at a fixed edge and work outwards from there. It’s better to start this way as it’s much easier to control the pattern.

permeable paver patio

Here, you can be a bit creative and choose to lay a pattern – it doesn’t have to be plain and simple. If you’re at a loss for ideas, feel free to contact us at Buddha Builders for ideas and advice on different paver patterns and styles.

When laying down each paver, an important step is to give them a light tap with a wooden mallet to set them in properly. There should also be equal gaps of about 2mm between each paver, which will be filled with sand later on.

Another pro tip: don’t walk on screed sand, rather walk on the already paved area.

Step 4: Compacting and Joining

Once all the pavers are laid out, it’s time to compact and join it all. Having a low amplitude plate compactor to do this is incredibly useful, especially if it’s one that covers a large area. It saves time and gets the job done!

Interlocking Permeable Pavers - Buddha Builders

Before compacting, the builders will add a thin layer of jointing sand to the area and spread it out. This will go between each paver and act like the glue that holds everything together.

The builders will then cover the base of the compactor plate with a thick rubber carpet or a thin sheet of plywood, to protect the pavers. Then, they will go ahead with compacting the area.

The next step is to add white-washed or darker sand into all the joints. This is more for aesthetics – it gives the paving a great finish. If you’ve gone with light-colored pavers, darker sand will go well with it and vice versa.

permeable paver patio - sweeping sand into joints - Buddha Builders

Once they’ve covered the entire area,it’s time to clear away the excess sand. Your patio is now paved and joined!

Step 5: Restrain Edges

Last but not least, the builders will finish the edging around the paved patio. If your patio is not right up against any walls or perhaps there’s a section that ends in the middle of your backyard, it’ll need restraining. This prevents the pavers from spreading out due to load.

The best way to do this is with concrete as it’s strong enough to hold in the sub-base and the pavers.

Final Thoughts

Paving can be an elegant and functional flooring solution for so many different areas of your property. From your driveway and garage down to your backyard and patio, permeable paving is such a great solution that’s versatile and extremely hard-wearing. While you can install your permeable paver patio DIY-style, there are several steps that might be better left up to a professional builder. So, if you’re looking to install a beautiful permeable paver patio be sure to contact Buddha Builders today. We can help you design.

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Sealing Pavers - Luxury Outdoor Living Space - Buddha Builders

Sealing Your Permeable Paver Outdoor Oasis

sealing pavers

Once Buddha Builders has installed your beautiful new  drivewayretaining wall, or backyard oasis, you will want to keep it looking beautiful for many years to come. The first thing clients ask is how to keep it as beautiful as the day it was installed. The short answer is to seal it. Applying a paver sealer is the best way to protect a new, or old, installation looking good for years to come.One of the ways to do that is to apply a paver sealer.

Benefits of Sealing Your Pavers

One of the main benefits of sealing pavers is to reduce maintenance by slowing the growth of moss or mildew in damp areas and inhibit weeds to keep your pavers looking new. It will also prevent stains from oil, food and drink spills, BBQ grease, dirt, leaves and pet messes. With the sealer, stains will stay on top of the sealant and not penetrate into the paver pores.

When To Seal Permeable Pavers

Paver sealer should be applied 60-90 days after installation is complete. That time will allow for a full weather cycle on your installation and enable your pavers to reach their optimal joint stabilization. It will also allow for the naturally occurring efflorescence to emanate from your pavers. In all concrete jobs, salts migrate to the surface in the first few months causing a whitish coating. Buddha Builders will clean and seal your pavers to keep our installations looking beautiful.

What Else You Should Know About Sealing Pavers?

Paver sealers can be broken into two categories; water-based and solvent-based. Both water-based and solvent-based sealers will provide long lasting protection to newly installed, or older concrete surfaces. They are designed to protect your pavers from wear and tear and as the paver’s primary means of stain resistance by preventing stains from penetrating into the concrete.

While water-based sealers do not have the strong solvent order and are easier to clean up, with Buddha Builders doing the job, the only difference between the two is the appearance.  Solvent -based sealers will “wet out” and penetrate concrete surfaces well. The result is a glossier finish that enhances the color of underlying concrete. If you like the look of pavers after it rains, this is the preferred choice. Water-based sealers will appear milky white when applied, but will cure to provide a lower-gloss, matte finish.

Sealing pavers is not an absolute necessity. Unsealed concrete won’t immediately deteriorate, pavers will still last a long time. They just require more maintenance. Any stains must be immediately cleaned up, before they can penetrate the pore of the concrete.

Pavers are a long-term investment, and without sealing, they won’t maintain their new look for more than a few years. Sealants are designed to protect pavers not just from stains, but from the elements. Western Washington has all four seasons, and sealing will protect pavers from sun, rain, snow and ice. Sealing creates an invisible layer that protects your pavers from the elements and anything foreign, like leaves and moss, that might drop or try to grow between them and repels water, oil and spills.

Depending on your expectations, concrete will look good and not fade right away. Eventually, UV breakdown will cause unsealed pavers to fade and lose their color. Paver sealers also contain an additive that will harden joint sand, making it less likely to have joint loss through settling or shifting sands. While not required, sealing is highly recommended.

Full disclosure; it is possible to seal your own pavers. But there are a few things that can go wrong with a DIY sealant project. Improper preparation will make it almost impossible to get a good seal and will not protect the pavers, compromising their visual longevity. Improper cleaning before sealing will trap stains under the seal, resulting in the pavers looking worse than they did before they were sealed.

A common problem is improper application of sealant, causing “hazing” from a white film trapped under the sealer. That will require stripping the sealer and starting the project all over again. Some home owners believe that is some is good; more is better and over apply their sealer which will create a haze and diminish the look of their urban landscape.

In the end, with rental of a pressure washer, purchasing paver cleaner, efflorescence remover, new sand and the time it will take for a DIY sealer project, it is more cost effective to let Buddha Builders, with our work guarantee, to do it for you.

Paver sealant is an important maintenance tool to keep paver patios, walkways, driveways and pool decks looking as beautiful as they day they were installed. And, as they say, there is no time like the present. The ideal conditions are 75 degrees and sunny, a narrow window for Washington summers. Generally, pavers will dry and seal anywhere between 50-90 degrees, but temperature can affect dry times.  In warmer weather, pavers are dry in a few hours, in cooler temperatures and shady areas they may require up to 24 hours. solvent-based sealants evaporate faster, so lower temperatures are better for application.

Ready build your outdoor living space oasis?

Whatever you choose, adding a sealing service to your permeable paver installation will keep your outdoor oasis protected, low maintenance and looking good for years to come. Invest in your Zen and schedule a sealing service today.

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Paver Saw

Cutting Pavers: Dust Free Innovation

When we find ways to contribute to the health of our team and the health of the environment, we research and adapt. Making strides and allowing us to progress in our commitment to health and longevity is IQ Power Tools. Innovators in their field, they have created the world’s first dust free line of power tools. After acquiring, experiencing and working with the saw you see above, we want to highlight why this new tool is beneficial, shedding some light on the necessity of its creation. We could not be happier having this tool in our arsenal and truly believe in its ability. To keep it simple, when cutting concrete pavers with a regular saw, silica dust is released into the air, either finding its way to the ground or into the lungs of workers. It takes time to clean up once cutting is complete, requiring both manpower and chemicals. It unfortunately can potentially cause a lung disease, Silicosis, which over 2 million US workers currently are susceptible to while at work. This new dust control power cutter allows us to cut pavers dry (which increases their overall precision cut) while at the same time drawing the dust into a reservoir inside of the tool. Buddha Builders has taken this innovation to a creative level, recycling the dust collected and dispersing it into future concrete mixtures. Using this tool allows us to work safer and smarter, which is a beautiful thing.

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interlocking paver pattern

The Benefits Of Permeable Pavers

Permeable pavers are making it easier than ever to reduce the amount of rain that turns into stormwater and are gaining popularity as a sustainable alternative to concrete and asphalt, showing up in both residential and commercial areas.  Durable and able to take on the weight of traffic, permeable pavers are chosen for driveways, walkways, patios and city spaces.

     So how does it work?  Permeable pavers are installed over a gradient bed of aggregate, with aggregate filling the joints between each paver.  When it rains, instead of water running into the street and into storm drains as it does with concrete and asphalt, rain water drains directly into the joints between the pavers and makes its way into the soil.  This reduces the amount of run-off, manages storm water and lowers the risk of flooding. The aggregate within the joints of the pavers additionally act as a percolator, filtering out pollutants before they reach the gradient bed of aggregate and the soil below.  With over 3 million gallons of “untreated sewage” dumped into the Puget Sound just this weekend, the importance of reducing the amount of pollutants that reach our waste management systems is far too clear.

     Permeable interlocking concrete pavement (PICP) is a great choice when looking to go green.  The options available through our favorite paver supplier can be combined in many ways and allow an array of options that fit the style of your home.  In some areas you may even qualify for rebates when you choose to add permeable pavers to your home.

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