Precast Paver Patio

Add a touch of class to your landscaping with a precast paver patio.

Intro

Precast concrete pavers fall into three categories: rectangular, multiweave, and keyed. Almost all concrete pavers are cast with lugs that space them for a sand-set installation. Most manufacturers sell half pavers so you won't have to cut your own. They cost more but are worth the time saved.

Rectangular pavers install the same way bricks do. Multiweave and keyed pavers require different techniques.

Multiweave pavers have sinuous edges that fit against one another. For many patterns, they make installation easier, though the edges are hard to square with a straightedge. Any pattern that works for rectangular pavers works for multiweave pavers. The sinuous edges imply a more intricate pattern.

You can install multiweave pavers using the open-field method: Install edging on two adjacent sides and lay the pavers to either meet or go past your layout lines on the opposite sides. Snap lines on the pavers and cut them before installing edging.

Checklist

Time
At least 2 days to lay out, excavate, and lay pavers for a 10x10-foot patio

Tools
Round-nose shovel, rototiller, spade, garden rake, 2x4 lumber, small sledgehammer, power tamper, rubber mallet, brick set, soft broom, garden hose, carpenter's pencil, wet saw

Skills
Cutting stone, laying stone, laying out square lines

Prep
Prepare site

Materials
Pavers, bedding sand, mason's sand, gravel, landscape fabric

Step 1

Lay out the site and excavate it so the final paver height will be about an inch above grade. Prepare the sand bed. Install edge restraints on two adjacent sides only.

Step 2

Starting in the corner, lay border pavers or other border material of your choice. Lay the border against the edge restraints. Cut two octagonal pavers and set them next to each other in the corner, with their keys pointing in opposite directions.

Step 3

Cut the key of the third paver and install it. Then install the fourth cut paver and set it. What you are doing is creating a second border of cut pavers and filling in diagonally across the surface with full pavers. Continue laying cut pavers and full pavers diagonally between them, with alternating keys in opposite directions.

Step 4

Continue laying pavers until you have filled the site. Snap chalk lines on the surface of the pavers at the other sides. Remove each marked paver, cut it with a wet saw, and reinstall it. Install the border on these edges and the edging, then sweep the surface with sand.


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