Stamped concrete vs. brick pavers


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Old 05-29-03, 10:06 AM
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Stamped concrete vs. brick pavers

Wasn't sure where to post this question - since it is dealing with a patio AND concrete/brick. Please move it if appropriate.

I got an estimate this morning for a patio, of about 360 sq feet, for both brick pavers, which is my preference, and stamped concrete, which I am unfamiliar with. The concrete was about 3K, the pavers, about 5K. Not sure if those estimates are high - any opinions? Well, actually I think they are horribly high, but I am just a lowly mom, so what do I know?

Also, since I had not envisioned anything except pavers out there, what are the advantages/disadvantages of stamped concrete over pavers? I really like the look of pavers, but at that price, I can't justify spending the money.

Thanks for your opinions.
 
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Old 05-30-03, 07:33 AM
Brckman29
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Stamped concrete or paver? Don't know any advantages or disadvantages. I have not seen any long term stamped concrete to see how it weathers. The estimates seem a little high on the masonry side. If you want another option, you might take a look at www.belgardhardscapes.com, the new celtic pavers look great.
They are easy to install, if you want to save a little you could DIY.

Good Luck,
 
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Old 05-30-03, 07:04 PM
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pavers or stamped

I've used both forms. Stamped is much better, and will weather better. It is pure poured in place concrete, the release agent ( a powder) is sprinkled on to help remove the stamp pads. This release agent also has a hardener in it, that increases the psi of the mix. Both you price quotes seem high. Keep checking, never take someones first bid. There is usually room to negoiate.
Stamped concrete survives Michigan winters in our streets, where our cities are replacing brick pavers that, heave, settle, and turn to dust.
 
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Old 06-03-03, 07:28 AM
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...or you can always lay some brick pavers down yourself. just read and understand about prepping the area first and you can proceed with the project. the nice thing is you can do a little each weekend. the only cost is for materials. but when done, you can stand there and say "i did it".
 
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Old 06-03-03, 01:35 PM
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Yeah - I've looked into it and know all the steps involved, and no doubt, I am capable of doing it myself (pavers - not concrete). However, I don't have a way to remove all that dirt that I have to dig up. The amount I have dug so far was used to build up a new shrub bed in the front yard, but I have no where else to use it. What do I do - dump it in the yard (where it kills the grass?) and then call someone to come shovel it into a truck and haul it away? Also, I have a few runs of my in-ground sprinkler system that will be beneath that patio - and I myself have no idea if this will be a problem. Any clue? And what about a drain? This is a pretty large area, and I was thinking that a drain would be neccessary in order to not drown an adjacent bed. Is it reasonable to try and do that myself? I'd LOVE to...but I like to turn on a flashlight before I walk into a cave....so to speak.
 
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Old 06-04-03, 07:39 AM
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you could always get a quote to have someone come in and remove the few inches of top soil you need to have removed. they'll be more than happy to take it, believe me. although they might use a small bob cat which may damage your lawn. secondly, depending on the installation of your sprinkler system, the lines should be deep enough not to pose a problem. just be sure that if someone is going to dig the dirt up they are aware of the location of the lines. you only need about 4" of stone dust to use as a base,(depending on drainage) and maybe an inch of sand to level them. so, theoretically, 5 inches of dirt has to be removed from the area you want to pave. unlike a cemented area, rain will be able to seep into the ground where the bricks are and should not pose a problem for you.
 
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Old 06-04-03, 09:54 AM
YanKee
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I'm not sure about the stamped concrete but out here on Long Island, NY I got estimates for pavers (non-tumbled) between $9 - $10. I feel this itself is high. So I've decided to jump right into it myself. I ordered a ton of books from Amazon and intend to figure it out as I go along.

I did look at Belgard pavers. They are beautiful compared to the others I looked into (nicolok, cambridge, grinnell). Surprisingly Belfgard does not have any dealers/distributor in Long Island. Also comparable was Paventia. It is relatively new and the price of tumbled ones are good IMO.
 
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Old 06-05-03, 01:09 PM
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I like the idea of getting someone ELSE to remove the dirt. Maybe I'll call around, see what I can come up with. They'll have to use a shovel and wheelbarrow though - can't get a bobcat in there because of the fence. But the gate is right next to a city water station driveway, so it's not like they'd have to haul it very far. Heck - I wheeled many loads across the street myself, when we the lot was still vacant.

So you think that the sprinkler pipe is okay under the pavers? I tried looking it up on the internet but could not find anything.

Oh - and I re-read the estimate - the actual price was $3800 for concrete, $5200 for pavers. I think the first thing I need to do is get some more estimates. The more people I talk to, the more I hear that this is a very high estimate.

Thanks for your ideas. I am just dying to get this taken care of - I'm tired of the mud (it seems like it has rained for weeks!!)
 
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Old 10-06-07, 05:07 AM
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Stamped Concrete Advantages

Stamped Concrete

The advantages of stamped architectural concrete over traditional pavers or other materials for driveway and patio applications are significant. The end result is a surface that is beautiful, durable, and requires little if any maintenance. Choose from a wide range of surface patterns and molds to give your home a truly custom look that perfectly matches your home.

Advantages of Stamped Concrete

Stamped concrete is permanent
Handles excess water better than pavers
More effective and durable, especially on slopes
No retainer curb necessary, as required on most paver applications
Unlimited selection of colors
Less maintenance required
No weeds or vegetation in joints
If you live in Fire Ant territory, they love the voids in pavers
High-flex structural strength
 
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Old 10-06-07, 03:21 PM
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Stamped concrete vs. brick pavers

Pavers are a DIY project and stamped concrete is not!.

If a contractor does all the work pavers will be more expensive than stamped, exposed aggregate or any type of concrete. There are two different types of pavers - clay pavers and interlocking concrete pavers(which are by far the most common in terms of area).

The amount of pavers being used is increasing at over twice the rate of concrete slabs for good reason - performance, aesthetics, design options, durability and property resale. Pavers are particularly well suited for cold climates, but work just as well in places like Virginia.

Interlocking concrete pavers are over the 8000 psi minimum (most about 9000-10000 psi), while concrete in most areas is 3000-4000 psi.

Interlocking concrete pavers usually are 60mm, 80mm or 100mm thick. They are used for sidewalks, patios, streets, airport taxiways, harbor ship unloading yards for large straddle loaders and industial applications like factories and repair facilities, such as dozer and tracked equipment repair.

Pavers are installed on a road base with the base thickness depending on the sudgrade and the loads (wheelchair or 747). The base must be graded to fit the final grade and the 1" uncompacted sand setting bed should be uniformly screeded to the 1" thickness. Pavers are set and vibrated into place after the edging is installed.
 
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Old 10-06-07, 08:11 PM
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I have to admit that the stamped concrete driveways I've seen looked very nice - but they were fairly new!

My son played hockey with another boy whose dad did stamped concrete for his customers (among other types of construction) after sending a key employee to some outfit in Florida to learn the trade from the "pros". After a few years doing that, he stopped doing it because he was getting too many call-backs!

Stamped concrete, like any other concrete driveway will eventually crack and repairs to that will inevitably mean a very expensive break up and removal of the old concrete.

Interlocking bricks, on the other hand, are very easy to repair when they settle, which is also inevitable. As far as doing the job from scratch, you might reconsider doing that yourself because of the back-breaking work required. But, if you do it yourself you'll likely save at least half of the cost (labor).

In my neck of the woods, interlocking brick is cheaper than any form of concrete by about 10-25% depending on what brick is chosen and how it's installed, provided it's done without stonework (i.e. soldiers course type of installation). So you may want to check prices by calling other contractors for quotes (at least three, more if you have time).
 
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Old 10-07-07, 11:43 AM
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Stamped concrete vs. brick pavers

yardnut -

If you go the paver route, do not use the term "brick" - It could be just a brick shaped unit and not meant for traffic AND may be a clay brick that is not durable.

Look for a "Interlocking Concrete Paver". Some big boxes also pawn off sub-standrd units that do not meet the ASTM requirements, but just look like real pavers.

If you have pavers made by nationally known names like "Belgarde", "Oldcastle", Pavestone", "Borgert" and a few other local names, you should be O.K.

One of the problems with stamped concrete is that you really have two different layers of concrete in the slab, and there can be scaling due to exposure. There is little that can be done about cracks that are inherent with concrete. Pavers are a "flexible" pavement that is designed to be able to flex and still carry high loads in severe climates without the cracking.
 
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Old 10-07-07, 01:14 PM
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Originally Posted by Concretemasonry View Post

One of the problems with stamped concrete is that you really have two different layers of concrete in the slab, and there can be scaling due to exposure.
Could you explain that concretemasonry? I have just recently seen about a hundred yards of walkway done. It was just one pour per section.

the 'crete was poured and screeded. then after some time (I don;t do crete so I don;t know what the wait was for), a colorant was thrown onto the surface and the mold was placed and impressed. After it set, it was washed down and it was then sealed with whatever the engineer spec'd. That was it.

No multiple layers of 'crete.
 
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Old 10-07-07, 02:11 PM
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Stamped concrete vs. brick pavers

It started out as one layer when is was poured/placed.

When the pigment was cast on the surface and the surface was stamped, this created a second "layer" that may have different properties when it comes to long term durabiity.

As an example, there is a limit of pigment to be less than 10% of the cement content. This is quite easy to overshoot in places when you have a thin layer you are trying to get a deep, rich color to. Many materials cast on are very strong and pure, so it can be easy to have too much. Some of the pigments are natural pigments, not synthetic or "processed" and refined. - Some colors are even organic, analine or chemical "dyes", which can have a short life.

The use of colored concrete for the entire slab can minimize some of the problems, but it is very costly because of the wash-out costs for the delivery trucks.

If everything is done right, a stamped, pigmented slab can be a real asset. Unfortunately, many people have recently jumped into the business thinking it is much easier that it really is if you want quality and durability. - Many of the newcomers jobs have not been tested by time yet.

Watch out for the guys that just rent stamps. There is nothing wrong with renting stamps to meet a customers requirements, but if you done have the particular stamp available or it is being used elsewhere.

The term "layers" may have been somewhat inaccurate, but it very similiar to the problems seen with over-working or over-finshing a slab. With the pigment and expected appearance adding to the required finished product, stamped concrete requires training and experience.

Dick
 
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Old 10-07-07, 02:28 PM
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that's why I asked an expert.


btw. the folks on my job were telling me that blue dyed concrete was about $400/yd while uncolored was $100 or less/yd (depending on slump, additives, etc.) Blue being one of the more expensive colors.
 
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Old 10-07-07, 03:05 PM
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Blue and green dyes (and acid stains, for that matter) are not recommended for exterior use. They will fade.
 
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Old 10-07-07, 03:08 PM
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Stamped concrete vs. brick pavers

nap -

You are correct about the fact that certain colors are very, very costly.

The most common colors of pigments used are synthetic iron oxides because they are very commonly used in bulk in other products and are refined to a high standard. They can also be blended and used in combinations. It is an very large international industry. These pigments are available in a wide range of colors from yellow, red, tan, brown and even to black. Often, carbon black (not a "true" pigment) is used in cheap mortar and colored concrete.

When you talk about blues and greens, chrome oxides and others are use as pigments at a premium of about 5 to 20 times the cost of iron oxides. That is just the material cost. - There is always the added cost to produce such odd colors in ready-mix concrete where contamination is a factor.

In the case of factory produced concrete products (architectural block, retaining wall block and precast panels) the cost can be identified and controlled accurately and production can be scheduled to minimize the premium for color.

The big pigment suppliers in the past (Bayer Chemical, Pfizer, and others) have invested a lot of money in the use of colored concrete to get it up to the level of other countries, but have not been able to really control the quality of pigmented, poured concrete. This is particulary true with some site applied uses.

Dick
 
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Old 10-12-07, 06:47 PM
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Originally Posted by Concretemasonry View Post
yardnut -

If you go the paver route, do not use the term "brick" - It could be just a brick shaped unit and not meant for traffic AND may be a clay brick that is not durable.

Look for a "Interlocking Concrete Paver". Some big boxes also pawn off sub-standrd units that do not meet the ASTM requirements, but just look like real pavers.

If you have pavers made by nationally known names like "Belgarde", "Oldcastle", Pavestone", "Borgert" and a few other local names, you should be O.K.
One can hung up on terminology. Bricks come in many forms (interlocking concrete bricks for driveways, patios, etc., clay or concrete bricks for building, etc. etc.) as do pavers (interlocking bricks, 18" X 18", 24" X 24" concrete slabs, etc. etc.)

The important thing to know is who made the bricks/pavers and how well the manufacturers stand behind their product for the intended use (I'd never heard of clay brick being used for anything other than bricking buildings as they are normally more expensive than concrete bricks and better for buildings!). One measure of this is the warranty. Some manufacturers offer a lifetime warranty against brick deterioration. When concrete bricks/pavers are made they can be made with cement containing high alkalinity which will cause the bricks to spall. The cement/granular/water ratio plays a role in determining the strength of the bricks. Unless the manufacturers are reputable and stand behind their products, the bricks may be of questionable quality. The bricks I have on my driveway have a lifetime warranty and only one or two have spalled a little over nearly twenty years!
 
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Old 10-13-07, 05:54 AM
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The reason it is important to distinguish is to make sure the correct product is used for a given application.

Terminology is important.

A "brick" is made of clay. If it is made of concrete, it is a "concrete brick", not a "brick". "Brick" are manufactured for walls, while "pavers" are manufactured for flatwork. A "brick paver" (i.e. clay) has the compressive strength and low absorbtion required for flatwork, while a normal "brick" may not. The same follows for a "concrete paver" compared to a "concrete brick". Pavers, clay or concrete, should also have molded in spacers to provide an interlock when sanded and compacted.
 
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Old 10-13-07, 06:22 PM
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Originally Posted by Tscarborough View Post
The reason it is important to distinguish is to make sure the correct product is used for a given application.

Terminology is important.

A "brick" is made of clay. If it is made of concrete, it is a "concrete brick", not a "brick". "Brick" are manufactured for walls, while "pavers" are manufactured for flatwork. A "brick paver" (i.e. clay) has the compressive strength and low absorbtion required for flatwork, while a normal "brick" may not. The same follows for a "concrete paver" compared to a "concrete brick". Pavers, clay or concrete, should also have molded in spacers to provide an interlock when sanded and compacted.
Must be a regional thing. Although I have no trouble with the term paver, many people in my area would probably look at you strange if you referred to them as pavers. Everyone calls them interlocking bricks here, and they're always concrete and every second driveway uses them !!! No one ever confuses them with building bricks, be they clay or concrete. Oh, and by the way, almost every house is also built with bricks on the walls in this area. I suppose we just know our bricks better LOL.
 
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Old 10-13-07, 06:58 PM
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Overlays are the best results

Pavers in time will settle, shift, and weeds will grow.
Stamped concrete will eventually crack.
Have a basic slab poured wait 28 days and have a overlay system done over it and it will be there for ever with little matience. The sky is the limit with textures and colors. http://www.elitecrete.com/
 
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Old 10-13-07, 07:30 PM
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edited for snippy response

Quickcurernt, your experience is local and limited.
 
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Old 10-13-07, 07:46 PM
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Do not confuse interlocking pavers with the large slabs (usually over 9" in any dimension). Then you go to install them, they are different animals inless you are just dealing with a patio. - Even for a patio, there is a difference in the ability to carry a load or be durable.

Interlocking pavers are high strength concrete (over 8000 psi) and are made to be durable. They can carry very high loads. They should be made to ASTM standards

The larger units (12" to 18" wide/long and 1 5/8" to 3" thick) that are normally sold as pavers are often nothing more than "stepping stones" that are inadequate strength-wise for many applications. Rarely do they meet any recognized standards and the durability is highly variable, especially from big box stores and some unsophisticated, price-oriented, hardscape suppliers. The large units require a much higher grade of support because of the low flexural strength.

Nothing is better in cold climates with frost and loads (driveway) than interlocking concrete pavers. Occasionally, some good clay products get "geographically disoriented"(lost) by unknowing retailers and they get used in climates they are not suited for (severe weathering).

Overlay systems do work in some areas. If pavers are applied over a concrete slab, extra preparation and details are required. Bonded overlays depend on the variable durability of clay brick, the bond to the concrete and the fact that concrete shrinks with time, while brick expands.

TS is right about using the correct terminology. - The use of the term "interlocking bricks" is a very regional and incorrect term, especially when it comes to zoning, codes and product identification. Only in a few small areas in the U.S. is it used, while the rest of the world uses the term interlocking concrete pavers.

Dick
 
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Old 10-15-07, 10:13 AM
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I'm sure yours extends beyond your county, doesn't it Tscarborough? LMAO. Good for you.

Concretemasonry, thanks to you, everyone reading this thread is now much more educated on pavers and bricks. Thanks for sharing. To me and people around here they're still interlocking bricks, and no we don't have crooks running around trying to pawn off clay bricks for driveways/patios. Again, I have no problem with the term pavers, although the dictionary this site uses seems to - keeps underlining in red the word paver! Different regions use different terms for things, I have seem my share. Have a fag while you shag, LOL. By the way are you a member of the "Dicks of America"?
 
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Old 10-15-07, 10:22 AM
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Originally Posted by pxt74 View Post
Pavers in time will settle, shift, and weeds will grow.
Stamped concrete will eventually crack.
Have a basic slab poured wait 28 days and have a overlay system done over it and it will be there for ever with little matience. The sky is the limit with textures and colors. http://www.elitecrete.com/
Th Romans used to sweep salt into their patio cracks to control vegetation. It's a very cheap solution to the weed and ant problems. A couple of pounds of salt twice a year will keep those pesky things from making your driveway/patio look like an abandoned place. Any settlement is relatively easy to re-adjust with pavers for any DIYer. Try that with that large concrete slab!
 
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Old 10-15-07, 11:58 AM
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Stamped concrete vs. brick pavers

The dictionary this site uses is totally outdated. Just refer to ASTM, NCMA and the ICPI (the organization that certifies paving contractors).

People that sell clay pavers are notreally crooks - they are just selling a product that may not be durable in much of the U.S. and Europe. - They just do not know what they are doing for that area. Some clay units are durable in freeze-thaw climates and some are not. The same applies for brick in walls and there are standards for different locations.

Salt was used by the Romans to kill vegitation AND to absorb moisture that provided stability for the gap graded base. They also did not have the climate we have in the U.S. In the U.S., with either clay or concrete pavers, salt would just cause stains and shorten the life. Unfortunately, the Romans did not have accurately sized pavers that produced very tight joints. - We have Roundup once a year for patios, driveway cracks and sidewalks.

For paths and "green" patios there are many fine applications with very wide joints between stones that are filled with grass and moss. - Just don't expect them to be strong or stable with any amount of heavy use.

There are products for most applications if you use the right words to find them.
 
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Old 10-15-07, 12:20 PM
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If by "local", you mean the Brick Institute of America, I guess you would be correct:

Page 1, paragraph one, line one of the Guide to Brick Construction: "Brick is made of clay or shale, formed, dried, and fired into a durable ceramic product".

Tech Note 9A, Manufacturing, Classification of brick, gives the various classifications, if you are interested.


We are using terminology, which is specific to the trade, not the locality. What you call it locally may work for you, but that does not make it correct. Since this is not a local forum, it makes more sense to use the correct terminology, not your local jargon.
 
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Old 10-15-07, 05:37 PM
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All of that aside, here is how I see paver VS concrete:

Stamped concrete:
Pros:
Is often cheaper, and the color and pattern can done to suit.
Cons:
It will crack.
Poorly done stamped concrete looks like crap, and it is very expensive to re-do.
Is often sealed, which becomes a maintenance issue.

Pavers:
Pros:
All cracks are pre-engineered.
Repairs can be done somewhat simply and inexpensively.
Denser than concrete, thus not requiring sealer.
Cons:
Cost.
Can settle (which is a plus as well).
Requires maintenance for weeds and ants.
 
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Old 10-15-07, 06:48 PM
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Ok, you two ladies, I didn't come here to argue over the kind of crap you've brought up. I'm done with this thread as further love notes will serve no valuable purpose to anybody and I haven't got time for that. Cheers.
 
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Old 10-15-07, 06:55 PM
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No offense meant and no hard feelings. We are all here to learn and assist.
 
 

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