How to Repair Settling Brick Pavers
Brick pavers can be used to create patios, sidewalks and driveways, and they can be placed in any number of intricate designs. If brick pavers are properly installed, they will most likely remain seated and level for years to come. This is not always the case, though, as sometimes the brick pavers can sink down, creating an uneven surface. It seems harder than it actually is to correct this problem as only a few minutes are needed to get it done. The article that follows will show you how.
Step 1 – Dislodge the Brick Pavers
Fortunately you do not install brick pavers using mortar or concrete as either of these materials would make it virtually impossible to remove the brick. Sand is used instead. It is wet down and packed along the edges, and once the sand dries it is nearly as hard as concrete. Even though it is that hard, you can still reconstitute it and remove the brick pavers. To do this you will need to soak the brick pavers for several minutes using the garden hose. Make sure you soak the edges of the pavers in order to soften the compacted sand. After about 4 minutes, the sand should be soft enough to work with.
Step 2 – Remove the Brick Pavers
Once the sand is soaked, it becomes loose and loses its grip on the edges of the brick pavers. Removing the brick pavers can take some time, depending on how large they are and how deep they have sunk down. Use the handle of one of the forks to begin scraping the sand out from between the bricks, exposing all 4 sides of the one to be removed. This is the only way that you can pry the pavers from the ground. If you cannot get a grip on the underside of the brick, the sand below will continue to hold it in place. Once the sand is removed from the edges, insert each fork at the sides of the brick paver. You will be able to feel the bottom of the brick. Once you do, close the forks tightly on the sides and lift it straight out of the hole.
Step 3 – Reseat the Pavers
Remove all the pavers that have begun to sink. Once they have been, removed pour an inch of sand in the hole and tamp it down with the wood block. Add more sand if you think it’s needed, then replace the brick. The goal is to have the brick slightly above the other bricks to start. Then you gently tap it down with the rubber mallet until it is even. When ready, pour more sand over the brick pavers, and then even it out with the broom. This also packs the sand into the spaces. Water down the area as you did previously using the broom to push in and compact loose sand. Repeat this process until the sand is packed and flush with the top of the brick pavers.