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Question DetailsAsked on 8/11/2017

What is the proper method of installing interlocking patio pavers?

Level ground/soil surface, thin layer of gravel to insure level, landscapers cloth, sand, then pavers?
No gravel?
Best product/landscapers cloth to use?
Specific grade or type of sand typically used?

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Voted Best Answer

Succinctly - see manufacturer websites or This Old House videos for more detailed instructions.

Level ground (taking into account of items going above it,

COMPACT ground if not very tight and firm,

place about 3-4" CRUSHED base (gravel moves around too easily) if the existing ground is not free-draining,

no landscapers cloth (serves no purpose and inhibits proper sand compaction) except non-biodegrading structural geotextile UNDER the crushed base if underlying soil is fine grained or soft to inhibit migration into the base and base settlement into it,

place perimeter restraints (commonly 4-6" steel paver edging strip backed by metal spikes in the eyes on the back of the edging strip),

place 1/2" to 1" masons sand for final levelling,

place blocks,

spread dry paver block sand (an angular mason's sand - if not available in your area use regular mason's sand) about 1/4 to 1/2" thick layer (some prefer to do so while wetting with a hose),

compact into the joints with vibratory plate compactor,

flood without any jetting to finish washing in of sand,

wet broom off excess

Some people use a sand with an adhesive in it for the joint filling - I do not like it, tends to stain the blocks, and prevents using a hook tool to pull up any block which happens to settle in a bit too much.

And when you hose the blocks to clean the patio, do so with a fan spray not a jet and as horizontally as possible and at a 45 degree angle to the joints to minimize washout - plain broom sweeping or low-angle leaf blower at an angle to joints is far better to avoid sand removal. Broom in new sand as needed to keep joints full - commonly about 1 sack worth per year for normal size patio.

Answered 3 years ago by LCD

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