How to Lay Pavers
BEFORE YOU START CHECKLIST
1. Check with your council
Pavers can usually be laid around your house without council approval. However, if you’re doing a driveway or working in an area where water runoff is an issue, you may need to contact your local council. Some of the newer residential communities have covenants covering the use of driveway material. If so get authorization before proceeding.
2. Check you have all the right equipment
☐ Garden Gloves
☐ Rubber Mallet
☐ Road Base
☐ Course sand
To lay courtyard of pathway areas you will also need:
☐ Fine Sand – or Jointing sand
☐ Ear Muff
☐ Spirit Level
☐ String Line
☐ Whacker Packer
☐ Brick saw
☐ Straight Edge
☐ Small trowel
3. Work how many pavers you will need
- Grab a pencil, paper and tape measure. Measure the length and the width of the area to be paved. Then multiply one by the other to determine the total area in square metres. Make an appropriate allowance for curved edges and or cuts.
- Multiply the number of required per m2 by the area to be covered to determine total number of pavers required. Allow an extra 2% just in case.
4. Important Safety
- Always wear eye protection when you’re splitting or cutting an Adbri Masonry paver.
- Wear eye protection when you are using a whacker.
- Bend your knees when lifting heavy pavers
- Wear work boots to protect your feet & gardening gloves to protect your hands.
- Slip, slop, slap if you are working in the sun & keep your fluids up.
STEP 1. EXCAVATION
- Mark out the area to be paved allowing a little extra for working room.
- Remove all loose debris and vegetation.
- Ensure to excavate deep enough to allow for selected paving and sub base construction.
STEP 2. PREPARING BASE
- Distribute road base evenly over the excavated area, making sure to set up with the general fall in mind.
- Compact the road base at least 3 times changing direction during the process.
- Begin to spread the river sand over the compacted road base to a thickness of 25-30mm.
- Screed the river sand with a timber float and straight edge utilising a level to ensure the surface is flat (keeping in mind you will need to allowing for water to run off).
STEP 3. LAYING THE PAVERS
- Make sure to set up a header course off along one side to begin, preferably the longest side of the paved area. Be sure to leave a 3mm gap between each paver to allow for adjustment as well as reducing potential paver damage.
- Once this is set up, create a 90° angle at one end of the paved area with a straight edge and set square, then begin to lay the pavers from this point, remembering to leave a 3mm gap between the pavers at all times.
STEP 4. EDGING AND LOCKING IN THE PAVING
- Make sure to utilise a sand and cement mix to haunch or lock in the header courses that are not up against a wall. This will assist in supporting the outer course of the paved area.
Handy Tip: It does not hurt to also use a little of the sand and cement underneath the outer header course, as this will create even more strength!
STEP 5. LOCKING SAND & SEALING
- Finally we can now add the washed beach sand or locking sand in which you can purchase from your local retailer. Sweep this sand in dry as it will make its way to the base of the paving and assist in the next step.
- Once the sand is settled you can use a whacker-packer with an old piece of carpet beneath it to compress and settle the pavers into the sand bed ensuring a great finish.
- Although not a must, sealers are recommended to both enhance the look of the paver as well as protect it from the elements, as well as day to day wear and tear such as food fats and general staining.
- The very last step is to enjoy your new living area.