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Question DetailsAsked on 5/26/2014

What is less expensive - concrete or pavers for patio additions?

I already have an existing concrete patio and I'd like to have a larger outdoor space. I'm just not sure what would be less expensive AND look good. Pour more concrete and stain new and old areas, rip it all out and do all pavers, or leave current patio and stain it and use pavers for the extension. Any suggestions would be appreciated!

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Which would look better is in the eyes of the beholder. Most people would probably find pavers more aesthetic than concrete - also generally more expensive if you are talking a patio sized area, but generally cheaper if only talking a small area, or if access is difficult so all materials have to be wheelbarrowed to the work site.

I have never worked out the breakeven, but assuming a concrete readymix truck can make it all the way to your site without objectionable rutting of lawn and breaking of walks and such then concrete poured in place is probably cheaper once you reach about 5 cy or so (about 400-500SF), and I would guess pavers would be cheaper than mixing and placing with a portable mixer and wheelbarrows for less than maybe 100-200 SF, which is likely your case.

Certainly, in your case, pressure washing current patio and staining it (if desired), and placing pavers as the extension is likely to be cheapest, assuming you are not talking a major extension. For aesthetics you might consider, if space is available, putting a border of the pavers around the concrete slab on the 2 un-extended sides as well, for appearance sake - or extending uniformly on all three sides if that works for you, to make it look symmetric.

One thing about extending with concrete - unless you dowel rebar into the old concrete at about 4-6 inch intervals and put a control joint (intentional joint like on concrete streets and sidewalks) you can count on undesireable cracking at the junction of the new and old concrete. Pavers will eliminate that problem because they are all "joints" anyway.

Another p[ossibility if you have lawnn there now and like that but want more "hardspace" is grass pavers - look like this, and can also be filled with pea gravel or smaller decorative rock if you prefer - I have seen one stunning yard where they put in grass pavers and then made patterns in them using quite a few different types of bagged decorative small stones - came out almost like a colored sand painting effect.

They go in like block pavers but you can grow grass in them (transplanted from your current lawn there is you don't mind a bit of hard work) unless you are in a real dry or hard to grow grass area, where they do not do so well,, and a small gravel or crushed stone might do better.

WARNING - NOT good in party environments where guests may be wearing high heels.

Answered 6 years ago by LCD

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