Hardscapes come in a variety of sizes and styles, each with its own personality and purpose. From the simple and serene, to the sophisticated and complex, patios are outdoor spaces adjoining a residence and are typically paved with concrete or stone. Decks create an elevated space or extend an area to create an outdoor oasis of peace and calm. Decks and patios are designed to provide an outdoor extension of the dining or living room, and are ideal for entertaining friends or enjoying a quiet night at home. Typical patio construction materials are concrete or stone, but other durable materials such as brick, block paving, tile, or paving stones and cobbles can be used. Patio and deck designs can be covered, screened, and incorporate heating lamps or a fire pit to allow for year-round enjoyment in any climate.
The dry-lay installation method involves laying pavers on a base of tightly compacted gravel aggregate and a layer of bedding sand. The process is simple: the patio stones are laid “dry” on the gravel and a jointing sand is used to fill in the joints. Compared to the wet, or mortar method, a dry lay is quicker, easier, and less expensive because the no-mortar process reduces labor. However, the biggest concern of dry-laid patios is that they can be susceptible to frost heaving in areas with particularly loamy soil.
A mortared, or wet-laid, hardscape provides excellent durability and a sturdy base for areas that will be subjected to heavy loads. This classic installation can look exceptionally refined when utilizing a high-end stone.
Type: Unit Pavers
Prefabricated interlocking pavers are an excellent option for patios. They have a well-established reputation for being durable as well as visually appealing. Paving manufacturers offer a wide range of colors and materials to match just about any vision you have for your patio space. They are designed to stand up to seasonal weather year after year. There are several versions available with non-skid properties for areas near pools and water features.
Type: CIP Concrete
Concrete is an exceptionally functional material, known for its durability and cost savings. Poured as liquid, it can become just about any shape you can imagine. Modern-day additives and formulations have made it nearly as resistant to chipping and cracking as conventional paving stones.
Material: Cut Stone
Natural stone patios offer a ton of charm, warmth, and beauty to your outdoor entertainment space. There are a multitude of stone options that can match any style and installation techniques vary from dry-laid to mortar.
The organic form of flagstone can provide a naturalistic surface texture that provides a rich and classic look. This paver installation can be done with a variety of different stones.
The options for precast concrete pavers are endless. Available in virtually every shape, size, color, and finish imaginable, precast pavers can help bring your space to life. The versatility of concrete allows precast pavers to resemble natural stone at a fraction of the cost. With salt-safe and permeable options, precast patios and driveways are a great option for winter climates.
Heated pavement is a valid option for regions regularly exposed to ice and snow. Electric heating elements can be installed beneath various paver types, keeping your outdoor spaces clear of ice and snow. In addition to saving time otherwise spent on snow and ice removal, snow-melt systems cut down on the environmental impact of salt.