Your Guide to Do-It-Yourself Paving

Using pavers, you can build a pavement for a walk-way or a driveway by yourself if you have the right tools and materials. DIY paving saves you money and could be a fulfilling and fun activity as well. Here are some points to considerable when doing a DIY paving.

Before you start building, make sure that all the required materials and tools are available. This will save you time as you won't have to go back and forth to the store if the because the material is not enough or you lack some tools. Carefully measuring the area you want to pave will tell exactly how many pavers you will need. A rule of thumb is that a square metre will use 38 pavers. Determine how many metres of area you want to pave and multiply it by 38 and you'll have enough pavers. Be sure to add a few extra pieces for replacement just in case some of the pavers get damaged.

Paving preparations

In preparing the area to do your DIY paving, make sure that it is well-drained. You should compact the area thoroughly and make sure that the surface is even and that there are no soft surfaces. After this is completed, you can proceed with bedding.

Remember to use washed river sand and not sand from the sea. Salty sand can cause white stains on the brick pavers. Use a rake or a shovel to spread the sand evenly across the area. You will need to use a pair of screeding rails and a screen to attain a flat bedding surface. A hand float can be used to fixed any damaged surface after moving the screed rails.

Laying the pavers

Now is the time to lay the pavers. Be sure to choose the appropriate pattern. Basket and running bond patterns can be used for walkways. If you are paving a driveway, the Herringbone pattern is more appropriate as it will respond better to the weight of vehicles. Use strings to make sure the you lay out the bricks in straight lines. Remember to allow spaces of 2-3 mm between pavers to prevent the pavers from being chipped due to contact.

Edging for paved areas

Once you have laid out the pavers, the next step would be to install the edge restraints. Edge restraints keep the pavers and place and must be installed before you proceed with final compacting.

Jointing sand and compacting after paving

You will have to fill the joints with jointing sand and then proceed with compacting. Don't forget to use a rubber mat under the compactor to avoid damaging the pavers. After the first pass, you will have to spread jointing sand again to make sure that the joints are all filled. You can go ahead and run a few more passes of the compactor. Clean up after the last pass and there you have it, you have now successfully finished a DIY paving project. Note that you might need to put jointing sand in the gaps between the pavers over the next few weeks until the sand settles.

Also see: Paving Photos (pavingphotos.com) for paving inspiration: pool paving, driveway paving, slate and sandstone pavers and more.