Sandstone pavers are often ideal for patios because they are pretty much climate resistant. The fact is that these pavers are much easier to work with i.e. cutting and coloring is very easy. However, many people don’t know how to use sandstone in their backyard which is why it either does not look as good or it starts to break.
The below tips are intended to provide a number of ways in which sandstone pavers can be laid out correctly and which will ensure that they last a pretty long time.
Tip no. 1: Lay down the sandstone pavers on your grass or cleared ground
Before you can lay down your pavers permanently you need to plan how it should be laid out. This will require that you lay down the pavers on grass or clear ground prior to building the base. Choose identical pavers or perhaps choose ones which are of different sizes.
The idea is to finalize something prior to laying things out permanently. Once you have what looks good just take a few pictures from your cell phone just so that you have a record of how you arranged the pavers.
Tip no. 2: Start laying sandstone pavers from the patio’s border
You should lay down and then fasten the sandstone pavers around the borders first. Then start working towards the center from there. The advantage of doing this is that you’ll be able to control the way the pavers are laid out.
Tip no. 3: Always use slightly dry cement as your base
Add around 2/3 parts of water to Portland cement and place the mixture under every sandstone paver. This type of slightly dry cement will help to form a much more durable bond with the sandstone as opposed to purely wet or liquid cement.
However, getting the consistency right takes a bit of practice. Ideally, you don’t want it to be too dry or too wet, if it’s too dry when the bond will obviously not form if it’s too went then it will not be as durable. In some parts of the world it’s possible to find premixed concrete meant for sandstone pavers which works just as well.
Tip no. 4: Allow for the cement and sandstone to thoroughly dry
Ideally you will want the sandstone pavers to stand overnight for around 16 hours for the bond to dry. Any less means that it will not form a good bond. There is also the chance that it may start to crack when put under pressure. In winter its recommend to give the pavers a whole 24 hours to dry thoroughly.
Tip no. 5: Fill in the gaps properly
Once everything dries it’s time to fill the gaps. This will require mixing up a batch of a slightly drier cement blend as compared to the above which will serve as the grout between each of the pavers lined up. Then you need to press this very firmly into the gaps. Once done wipe off all the excess from the surface using a damp cloth. If a premixed grout formula is available in a store near you then that too should do the job quite well.
Tip no. 6: Check the pavers
Once everything is dry you may want to use a stick and tap around on all the paves you have just installed. This is to find if any one of them is loose or not properly set. Some experts recommend running your car over the paves just to compress them when they around 8 hours into the drying process. However, unless the pavers are meant to be driven on it may crack them.
Tip no. 7: Always lay down the same type of sandstone pavers
Using different quality and types of sandstone pavers is never a good idea. According to experts like Australia based Artmar it is best to buy the high quality pavers and used them throughout your project. This will ensure that the integrity across them is the same. Also, sandstone pavers you use for your patio may be slightly different from those that you use for your driveway. Always consult an expert when in doubt or you are confused.
Mark is one of the leading experts on sandstone pavers in Australia. His business deals in all types of pavers including those of sandstone. In his opinion some of the most beautiful pavers are made from sandstone which is why they are the pavers of choice in Australia. He is also an active contributor to various blogs.