How to Install a Paver Patio

Building a paver patio is a great way to create a functional space in your landscape.

If you are thinking of incorporating pavers into your yard, you'll need 1/4" gravel, polymeric sand, 1" steel bars, and, of course, pavers. Alderwood uses and recommends Belgard pavers since they are durable and come in several styles with many color options! While a professional company can easily install pavers, many DIY-ers love the challenge.

If you are considering laying your own paver patio, continue reading to learn how with tips from Alderwood experts!

After outlining your desired patio space, the first step is to dig out the area. Excavate about 7 inches down. Keep in mind that the pavers will sink a little as they settle throughout the process, so be sure to have one to two inches of "cushion" to ensure that the pavers will end up flush against the ground or neighboring concrete.

While you want the pavers to be flat, it is vital that you slightly angle them away from the house. Alderwood crews always ensure the pavers are at a 10% grade to avoid any water or drainage issues.

Next, lay down about a four-inch-thick layer of gravel. Our foremen use 1/4" crushed concrete or basalt gravel. For best results, make sure to compress the rock as you are adding it. Since this forms the foundation for your pavers, this step is vital, as you do not want your pavers to be loose!

Once the gravel is in place, our crews use 1-inch steel bars placed about a foot apart to continue leveling and ensure ultimate precision. This step, according to many experts and DIY blogs, is unnecessary. Alderwood continues to hold this higher standard, however, so that our patios and walkways are well-constructed and built to last. We highly recommend that you take the time and money to complete this extra step!

Once the bars are perfectly placed, and the gravel is level, pour coarse paver sand evenly over the top and use a board to level. Carefully remove the steel bars and fill the gaps with sand.

After verifying everything is flat, you are ready to lay the pavers!

Place them as close to each other as possible, and use a level as you work to ensure a smooth patio. Spike pavers down or use a compactor to vibrate them into place.

Once the border is also cut and positioned, use water or a leaf blower to clean up. Then, seep polymeric sand on and between the pavers, leaving 1/4" layer of sand on top. Use the compactor once again to vibrate the sand into place. Sweep away the excess, and mist down to activate the glue. Alderwood crews recommend repeating this misting process about 2x - 3x, letting it dry completely in between.

Once you have blown away any excess and washed the pavers one last time, the process is complete! Now you can enjoy your gorgeous paver patio!

Want to trust Alderwood with your paver install as a part of your more extensive backyard renovation? Find out if we're the right choice for your project!

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