Your Paver Patio Contractor in Seattle

Columbia Slate Patio – Shepherd Stoneworks

Over the years we have installed many a concrete paver patio. Besides being very cost-effective when compared to natural stone, they go in pretty quickly and the end result can be strikingly neat and intricate. They are also crack-resistant (when installed correctly, especially the smaller varieties) and are very easily replaced in the instance of damage or staining.  People also tend to prefer them in scenarios where they will be using a lot of patio furniture due to the near lack of space between the stones and reliable evenness.

While pavers have become pretty commonplace in public spaces, oftentimes you only see the same familiar styles being used. For this reason, pavers are often thought of as being bland or uninspired. Luckily, there are a wide variety of styles and patterns which, with a little forethought, can be combined into something quite unique. Outside of the styles commonly seen, some of the most interesting brands and products include:

by Mutual Materials
Porcelain Architectural Slabs
– super hard and more scratch-resistant, these have a variety of printed textures including wood and marble
Plank Pavers – long, narrow rectangles give a very modern look; they’re extra thick at around 4″
Columbia Slate – easily the most convincing emulation of natural stone pavers;  the gray-blue version very closely mimics Pennsylvania Bluestone
Old Dominion Circles – a series of angled pieces combine to make a perfect circle;  circles can also be knit together into fan shapes

by Abbottsford
Pacific Slate – a nice slate square/rectangle pattern that has a natural feel to it; also smaller proportionally making them more resilient to damage
Venetian Cobble – one of the more heavy duty pavers (suitable for driveways) that has a decent look and pattern; the detailed edges give a nice effect
Old Country Stone – though this one is used a lot, when the three sizes are combined in a pattern the tumbled look has a pleasing craftsman look

Pavers are less labor-intensive and installation costs are much lower than that of stone. Because of the uniform thickness of it, the base can be prepared using a screed (a board dragged across guide pipes) after which the paver layout is just dropped into place. The excavation and preparation of base material make up around half of the work, the layout another quarter and the cutting of pieces near the edges and last details make up the latter quarter.

Sand is swept into the joints at the end which stabilizes the whole patio through friction. Nowadays there is the option of using a product called Polymeric Sand which, when carefully moistened and allowed to dry for a day, hardens to discourage loose sand and weed growth.  It is also porous for the sake of drainage.  I find the product to be very effective in scenarios where the joint width is no larger than 1/4″, otherwise it doesn’t perform well in the elements.

Maintenance is needed, as with any kind of pavement. Every year or two you should plan on pressure washing the patio, but it is very important that you sweep new sand into the joints or the patio will eventually fall apart in places.  If you have polymeric sand the same holds true, but you will find that in some places the old polysand remains intact while other spots will blow out completely when washed.  That is fine – just sweep new sand over the old and they will bond together very well.

Give us a call when you need a quote for a new patio!
(or maintenance on your existing one)

by Mark Shepherd

(206) 618-0558

Bringing the finest in Stone Masonry to the Greater Seattle Area.

Natural stone walls, patios, steps and rockery of all sizes.

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