Product Installation Guide
The best method to use when installing our brick pavers is to place them on a bed of gravel, covered over with a layer of tamped sand. There is no concrete necessary in the process. Arrange the pavers in a pattern of your choice. After the pavers are fit tightly together, fine-grained masons sand is swept into the joints to serve as a cushion between bricks and compensate for any irregularities in the underlying bed.
1. Planning and Layout: The first step is to plan your paved area and make sure that the correct amount of floor space is allocated. Decide where the pavers will go and make sure there is sufficient space. Outline the area with wood or string, then mark or spray paint your outline approximately 8 inches outside of the first border. Also remember that the area should have a slight gradient or slope to allow for water runoff and to avoid pooling.
2. Calculate Pavers Needed: First, measure the width and length of the area that is about to be paved. Multiply these values together and this will give you the area, either in square meters or square feet. It is recommended that you add 5% to this area to compensate for pavers that will be cut to fit curves or odd spaces. If you think that you may be cutting a lot of pavers, it would be wise to add 10%. Now you know how many square feet or square meters of pavers you will need to complete the project.
3. Excavation: Determine the height that the pavers should reach and not exceed. Do this by adding the height of the brick paver with the height of gravel needed (about 4 inches), and the height of the sand (1-2 inches). Place stakes around the perimeter and mark them accordingly with the decline of the slope. If you are against a house, the slab should slope downwards and away from the house to allow proper water drainage. For every 4 feet of pavers, you should go down one inch in depth. Tie strings tightly to those stakes to indicate the height levels. Now it is time to dig out the ground to this depth, removing all grass, sod, roots, and large rocks. It is then helpful to compact the remaining ground with a compacting machine.
4. Base Material: Once the excavation is finished, it is time to start laying the base material. If the soil is naturally well drained and stable, you may be able to place the sand bed directly on top of it without a layer of gravel. Otherwise, a gravel drainage base should be used. The thickness of the gravel needed is dependent upon the strength of the underlying soil. For common walkways, patios, and driveways with light traffic, use a 4-inch bed of gravel or crushed stone. It is best to then compact this layer.
5. Edge Restraints: Edging is very important in maintaining your paved area. If Edging is not installed, your brick pavers may move or separate. Edge restraints can be made of plastic, pre-cast concrete, steel, or aluminum.
6. Sand Bedding: Now it is time for the sand to be laid over the base material. Spread a layer of sand between 1 and 2 inches thick. Tamp or compact the sand to a level that will allow the paver surface to be approximately 1 inch above ground level.
Optional: to prevent weeds from growing between the joints of the pavers, you can install a landscaping fabric between the gravel and sand bedding layers. This will also help keep the sand from settling into the gravel.
7. Laying the Pavers: Place the brick pavers tightly together on top of the layer of tamped sand, then tap them into place using a rubber mallet. Use the string line to make sure the bricks are straight and following the original design. If pavers need to be cut to size, use a saw or mechanical splitter along with safety glasses. If you have to make contact with the sand bed to lay the first bricks, kneel on a piece of ½-inch plywood to avoid making holes in the sand. After laying a couple rows, place the plywood on top of the pavers and continue. Once all the pavers are in place, use a mechanical compactor to ensure that they are snuggly placed in the sand.
8. Sand Joints: The final step is filling the joints with fine-grained sand. Fine-grained sand will compact much better and fill up the joints faster than coarse sand. Sweep the sand into the joints using a broom and then lightly spray the surface with water to pack down the sand and wash it off the surface. Allow some time to dry and then repeat this step until all joints are completely filled with sand. Sealing the brick pavers is not neccessary, your project is complete!