Paving the way!
Believe it or not, there's more to choosing the right paver for your landscaping project than just picking your favourite colour and shape. While the look of your pavers is certainly an important consideration, did you know that their depth - and sometimes even the material they are made out of - can impact what they can be used for? No? That's ok - most people don't.
Read on to learn why, and to see our answers to some of the other frequently asked paving questions we get here at Midland Brick.
Q: Why does the depth of your pavers matter?
A: The depth of your pavers matters when considering the cost of the project and where you are paving. Thinner pavers don’t have the weight-bearing capacity needed for driveways or crossovers – but they can be a cost-effective option for al frescos, pathways and patios. Thicker pavers will be slightly more expensive, but they have the strength to hold the weight of cars, commercial vehicles and trucks; perfect for commercial driveways or high-volume traffic areas.
Q: Do different pavers have different uses?
A: Different colours, sizes and shapes of pavers definitely do have different uses.
If your paving project will be carrying pedestrian traffic only (for example, a backyard patio), 40mm pavers will be a suitable solution. If your project will require the strength to hold light vehicles (i.e. residential, single-dwelling driveways) most 50mm or 60mm pavers will be sufficient for this job. Please take note thought that while many 50mm pavers can be used for residential driveways, most councils require pavers to be at least 60mm or more in depth for the crossover (the bit of driveway between the boundary of your property and the kerb). Our recommendation is to check with your local council before purchasing your pavers if the project will include the crossover. For large commercial works like roads, carparks or commercial buildings (or residential, multi-dwelling driveways), you will need to consider pavers of over 60mm in depth to ensure they can withstand the weight and wear-and-tear that will be placed upon them.
Q: Do you have to use thick pavers for driveways, or is this a myth?
A: It’s not a myth! You usually need at least a 60mm paver (like Colonnade, Heavy Duty or Masterpave Classic 60), especially for the crossover. We recommend speaking to one of our sales team on 13 15 40 if you would like further information about paving crossovers. Also important to note is that many councils require you to have a Crossover Permit or similar before constructing your crossover – so we also recommend that you contact your relevant City, Town or Shire before you commence planning.
Of equal importance is the sub base laid before the pavers. While not always required for foot traffic areas, if your pavers are to be used for a driveway, correctly preparing the site is essential to ensure you do all you can to minimise rutting (sinking), paver movement and other damage.
Q: Are clay or concrete pavers better?
A: There are pros and cons for both types of pavers. The colour in clay pavers is fired in during the production process, so they will not fade and they can be more resilient when it comes to cleaning. However, due to the manufacturing process required, clay pavers are usually only available in smaller formats.
Concrete pavers, on the other hand, are available in a variety of sizes and are able to be manufactured in a variety of colours since oxide is used to achieve coloration, but they may weather more so than clay. At Midland Brick, we recommend you seal concrete pavers; this may not be as necessary for clay.
Q: How do you lay pavers?
A: We explain everything you need to know to laying pavers here!
Q: Can you lay pavers yourself?
A: Absolutely! We walk you through the steps to laying your pavers here.
The basic steps to laying your pavers for a patio are:
- Prepare the ground and compact
- Spread the sand for the final level
- Actually lay the pavers and make sure to blend from your packs
- Complete a final compacting & fill all joints with either sand or Pave-Lok®.
Laying pavers for driveways or irregularly shaped areas can require a few more steps to ensure a quality result. We recommend speaking to one of our Customer Service team on 13 15 40 for more information, or you can view our guide to laying pavers here.
Q: Do I need to use a sealer on my pavers?
A: At Midland Brick, we always recommend sealing your concrete masonry pavers. Sealing is especially recommended for concrete pavers to:
- Increase the vibrancy of colour (especially for honed pavers)
- Protect colour from weathering due to sun exposure
- Help repel stains.
While sealing is not essential for clay pavers, it can help protect them from stains.
TOP TIP: make sure the sealer you select is suitable for use on clay pavers, as some sealers are only recommended for use on concrete products.
Q: How do I maintain my pavers?
A: We talk about paver maintenance here, but our biggest tips are:
- Make sure they’re laid properly in the first place
- Seal your pavers
- Keep your pavers clean with frequent sweeping and the occasional wash with a garden hose
- Top up any paving joints that need a little bit of extra jointing sand to stop weeds or pests pushing through. We recommend the Boral Pave-Lok® bonded jointing sand for this use.
To find out more about Midland Brick pavers, view our range online, call 13 15 40 to speak to a member of our Customer Service team, or visit us in store.