Deciding what materials to use when constructing a walkway on your property presents you with a few options—one of them being brick pavers. Since you want something that’s durable, accessible, and easy to work with (and, of course, something that's aesthetically pleasing) brick pavers are the perfect choice. Today, we’re touching on what this material is, their pros and cons, and how to lay your own walkway or patio with them.
What Are Brick Pavers Made From?
Brick pavers are made from clay, which is formed into a rectangular shape and then cured when it’s baked in a kiln, much like a piece of pottery. When you're shopping for your pavers, it’s important to pay attention to the materials they're made of. Many claim to be “bricks,” however, that term is frequently used just to describe their shape. Always ensure that you’re selecting bricks made of clay rather than concrete when you’re purchasing your materials.
What Are the Advantages of Brick Pavers?
There are several advantages to using brick pavers for your perfect outdoor walkway:
First, brick pavers are likely to retain their color better than concrete, even after years of wear and tear. This is because their clay is naturally colored during the mixing process and the material is able to stand up better to UV rays.
When you put the time and money into a DIY project, you want to know it’ll be a worthy investment! One of the great benefits of brick pavers is their lifespan. Even if they chip or slightly crack over the years, they will still stand up to the test of time. This is in contrast to concrete pavers, which have the tendency to erode and fade as time goes on with exposure to the elements.
This material requires virtually no maintenance or cleaning since it resists stains, which is a huge plus!
Brick pavers create a classic style in your landscape and, especially given the fact that they age well, they’ll always look charming! This is another way that they differ from concrete pavers, which tend to look worn out once they become chipped or eroded.
What Are the Disadvantages of Brick Pavers?
When you’re weighing your options for a project, there are a few disadvantages associated with brick pavers that you’ll want to consider.
Because of the way brick pavers are created, they may vary slightly in size and dimension, which makes them more difficult to install.
Limited Color Choices
Due to the fact that bricks are naturally colored with clay, they are not as versatile when it comes to color choices.
Brick pavers tend to be more expensive than that of concrete, typically by 15 to 20 percent.
How to Lay Brick Pavers
Whether you’re creating a charming walkway or an elegant patio, it’s easy to incorporate brick pavers as an addition to your yard or landscaping. They are always attractive and add curb appeal, so it’s a no-brainer. We’ve included a set of simple instructions in the tutorial below.
Step 1 - Mark the Area
First, you’ll want to mark and outline the area that you'll be paving. Set stakes at the corners, driving them about eight inches into the ground.
Step 2 - Prepare the Base
Next, you must prepare the base that will lay under the pavers. Spread gravel over the area and rake it so that it’s even and smooth. Tamp down the gravel using a hand or power tamper.
Step 3 - Install Edging
Once the base is ready, you need to install edging before laying the bricks. Measure and cut the plastic paver edging and lay it along the outside of the space. Using 12-inch spikes, secure the edging to the ground.
Step 4 - Add Sand
Sand should be poured over the entirety of the area all the way up to the edging so that it's about an inch deep. Using a rake and a horizontal 2x4, smooth out the sand so that it's even and level.
Step 5 - Lay the Pavers
Lay the bricks one by one, starting at the edges and working inward. Use a rubber mallet to tap each brick into place. Continue this until the space is completely filled. If you come across any irregular openings, use a hammer and cold chisel to break pavers to the appropriate size so that the entirety of the space is filled.
Step 6 - Fill the Joints
The last step is to fill the joints between the pavers to make your patio or walkway seamless. Spread a thin layer of sand over the area, using a broom to gently work the sand into the joints. Use a garden hose to soak the area with water, which will help to push the sand into the joints and allow it to settle. Repeat this process as needed until sand fills all the gaps and then run a tamper over the area so that the pavers are adequately set.
As you’ve now learned, brick pavers are not only easy to install, but they’re a great way to make a statement in your yard! Their classic charm and beauty means that they’re worth the investment, and we guarantee that you’ll love the way they look surrounding your home.