Build a Patio with Brick Pavers Build a Patio with Brick Pavers

Installing patio brick pavers can be a tough job that requires a large amount of physical effort in order to get it done right.  But if you’re the type of person who likes getting their hands dirty and playing with dirt then you can tackle this project with great results.

Equipment and Materials Required:

  • Landscape Fabric
  • Shovel (Garden Spade and Flat-Bladed)
  • Garden Rake
  • Wheelbarrow
  • Masons String
  • Level
  • Tape Measure
  • Hammer
  • Sand
  • Top Soil
  • Patio/Paver Base
  • 1 inch PVC pipe
  • 12 feet or longer 2x4
  • Wet Saw (rental tool)
  • Vibrating Plate Compactor (rental tool)
  • Plastic retaining edge
  • Spikes
  • Work Gloves
  • Safety Glasses

Step 1 – Install the Foundation

The first and most important step in working with patio brick pavers is to make sure you have a solid and level foundation. After determining your layout, begin excavating by using the garden spade to dig into the grass and soil.  Next use the flat bladed shovel to remove the grass in clumps so you can use it to patch in the area around the patio. The depth of the excavation is determined by adding 6 inches to the width of the paver. It’s important to remember to slope the sub base to ensure proper drainage and a good rule of thumb is 1 inch per 4 feet. You can use your tape measure to check the depth relative to the grade of the adjacent area. After you’ve reached the desire depth, run over the area with the plate compactor to level the sub surface. 

The next step in installing the foundation for a patio is the base which is gravel. This gives the patio brick pavers a solid layer to support them over the years and keep them from sagging. Lay the landscape fabric and just spread the material around with a garden rake until there is a level 4 inches of material in your excavated area. Then wet the gravel lightly with a garden hose and use the compactor to level off the material. You’ll notice it will get clumpy when moist and the compactor helps pack it all together.  

Finally, begin laying the last 2 of inches of sand using the PVC piping to create 12 foot sections. Allow the top of the piping to be exposed in the sand and use the 2x4 to level off the material. This process is called screeding and will give you a level surface to lock the pavers in place.

Step 2 - Install the Patio Brick Pavers

Lay the patio brick pavers starting in one corner and working your way outward. Use the wet saw for any cuts taking care to use proper safety precautions. Lay the level across various sections of the patio to intermittently check for level. You can use the hammer to lightly tap on the stone to adjust its depth.

Step 3 – Installing Retaining Edge

After you’ve installed all the patio brick pavers you need to secure the edge. This step consists of laying the plastic retaining edge along the outer edge of the patio brick pavers. Secure the retaining edge in place with the spikes provided.

Step 4 – Top Coat the Patio with Sand

Dump fine sand all over the top of the patio using a push broom to spread it around and a corn cob broom to work the sand into the joints of the patio brick pavers. Then sweep off the excess sand and you’re done.

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