Nothing ties a home together quite like a brick walkway or patio.
Brick and concrete paver outdoor fixtures have a clean and classic look that’s hard to ignore. On top of that, they can boost the resale value of your home while providing you with a functional outdoor space that your family and guests are sure to love.
Best of all, you don’t have to hire out an expensive contractor to create a walkway or patio. Here in Southeast Wisconsin, installing brick or concrete pavers is an easy project you can take on yourself.
Aren’t sure where to start? Here’s everything you need to know about how to install pavers yourself.
How to Install Pavers
While laying brick and pavers can be pretty easy, there is a bit of planning you’ll need to do before you can start. But, once you know what you’re going to do, all that’s left is to gather your tools and start laying brick.
1. Design a Layout
The first step to any home improvement project is to draw up a full plan of attack.
Before you can even start gathering up your equipment, you should figure out where you want your pavers to go and the shape you want to lay them in. You’ll also need to take the measurements of the area so you can calculate the number of pavers you’ll need to get the job done.
2. Stake the Area
Once you have your plan drawn up, you’ll need to stake the area where your paver feature is going to go. Doing this will allow you to do a test run of laying out your pavers so you can get a better idea of how they fit within the space.
3. Dig Out the Foundation
After you have staked out the location of your new patio or walkway, you’ll need to dig out the foundation.
As a general rule of thumb, you want the final hole to be seven inches deep.
4. Create a Gravel Base
With the foundation dug out, you’ll now need to prepare the base of your paver project.
Fill the bottom of the foundation with roughly two inches of 3/4″ crushed stone gravel. Then, compact the gravel with a vibratory plate compactor, or hand tamper. Repeat this process two more times before moving on to the next step.
5. Add a 1″ Layer of Bedding Sand
Sand gives you a soft, moldable area that will make sure your pavers don’t move around while you lay them. All while also helping to lock the units together once they are laid.
To make the sand layer, pour approximately one inch of paver sand over the gravel. You’ll then need to level the sand with a smoothing tool or spare piece of wood used as a screed to make sure the surface is completely even.
6. Lay the Pavers
Laying brick and pavers is a bit like completing a jigsaw puzzle—it’s easier if you already know how the final product looks. Make sure you choose a pattern that works with the size and style of paver you chose for the project.
Set each paver flat into the sand and tap it down with a rubber mallet.
7. Seal Pavers with Sand
Finally, when pavers are fully laid, you need to sweep in joint sand. You can use regular paver sand or, for less maintenance, use polymeric sand.
Pour the sand out over the pavers, and then use a broom to sweep it over the pavers in a back and forth motion until you fill all the gaps between the stones.
Once that’s done, you’ll need to sweep all excess sand from the patio, especially if you’re using polymeric sand since it could stick to the bricks. Make sure to follow the specific directions for the type of polymeric sand you are using, as not all polymeric sands are installed in the same fashion.
Finding the Right Pavers for Your Project
Now that you know how to install pavers, it’s time to get started on your brand new patio. Need some materials to help you out with that project? We can help!