8 Steps to Paver Installation
Installation steps include job planning, layout, excavating and compacting the soil sub-grade, applying geotextiles (if necessary, spreading and compacting sub-base, constructing edge restraints, placing and screening the bedding sand, and placing concrete or marble pavers in a vast array of patterns and designs
Step 1 – Planning
Start with a good level measure and draw a diagram of the area you want to pave, noting any existing structures such as buildings, fences and other paved areas. Your local did Decor dealer can help you determine the best stones and the proper amount of supplies you need
Step 2 – Preparing
Contact your local utility company before you begin to excavate. Stake out an area for possibly 12″ larger than the area to be paved. Plan the slope the paving away from the building in the direction of the normal drainage. Make sure that you have a 90° corners of your starting point. You could do this by using the 3-4-5 triangle method. From the corner stake measure 3′ across the base of 4′ up the side. The diagonal line joining these two points should be 5′. If it is not, adjust the 4′ side until the diagonal is 5′.t
Step 3 – Excavating
Where there is only pedestrian traffic a base of 4″ – 6″ of processed gravel is recommended. To achieve this excavate 7″ – 9″ to allow for the base material, sand and pavers. Where there will be vehicular traffic or around pools a base of 6 to 8 inches of processed gravel is recommended. To achieve this, excavate 9 inches 11 inches deep. Make sure to excavate 12 ” beyond the area you plan to pave.
Step 4 – Installing the Base
Compact the surface of the excavated soil with a plate compactor. In small areas a hand tamper maybe sufficient. Fill the area with three quarters of an inch minus crushed stone or aggregate approximately 5 inches thick. Compact this with the plate compactor. Wetting the gravel lightly with water will help with the compacting. When you can walk on the gravel without causing an indentation you can add the next layer of gravel and compact it. Continue to add gravel in layers until the base is approximately 3″ to 3-1/2″ from the desired level of the finish grade. Make sure to slope the surface for water drainage. The slope should be 3/16 per foot. Install a level line across the area using line level. On the stack that is at the end you want to slope towards, move the line down 3/16 of an inch for each foot the pavement. For example, if your pavement will be 8 feet long move the string down 1 inch. Measure the distance from the line to the base. The distance should be equal all along the line. For example if your payment will be 8 feet long, move the string down 1 inch. Measure the distance from the line to the base. The distance should be equal all along the line.
Step – 5 Layering Pavers
Starting in a 90º corner, lay the pavers in the pattern you have chosen. Work outwards keeping all joint lines straight. Use string lines pulled along joint lines and parallel to the edge restraints or, chalk lines snapped on the surface of the sand bed to keep the joint lines straight. Leave a 1/8” space between pavers. Periodically check the alignment of the rows by stringing a line along the front edge of the leading row. Each paver should touch the string. If adjustment is needed use a screwdriver and hammer to move it into place. Work off the pavers you have already installed but stay away from the edge so you do not disturb the sand bed. Install remaining edge restraints. Do not try to turn the pavers with curves in your laying pattern. Cut pavers to fit along the edge restraints.
Step – 6 Cutting Pavers
Measure and mark the pavers to be cut with a marking crayon. A diamond blade wet saw, paver splitter or a hammer and chisel can be used to cut pavers. Always wear safety glasses. If possible, keep edge stones to one half paver.
Step – 7 Compacting & Setting
Sweep the surface to remove any debris. Spread masonry sand over the surface, sweeping it into the joints leaving surplus sand on the pavers. Tamp the pavers down using the plate compactor. The excess sand on the pavers will cushion the surface and the vibration will assist in filling the joints. Spread more masonry sand if required. Make two or three passes at 90º to each other and re-sweep the surface.