The Pros and Cons of Concrete Pavers

Concrete pavers can be used in almost any area that requires a smooth, flat surface.  For this reason they’re often found in driveways, sidewalks, garden pathways, patios, around swimming pools and more.  But because there are more ways to create these kinds of surfaces than concrete pavers alone, there can be drawbacks to using them as well.  To help explain the pros and cons of concrete pavers, we’ve come up with this helpful article.

Pros

Strength

Concrete pavers can actually be stronger than poured concrete which can make them ideal for surfaces that have to bear a lot of weight, such as driveways.  Because the weight is distributed across several different sections at once, concrete pavers can withstand a greater load than a singular concrete pad.

Instantaneous Use

Poured concrete pads require curing before they can be used.  Depending on the size of the pad, this can take as long as a full month.  Concrete pavers, however, can bear a full load immediately after their installation.

Repair

If some of your concrete pavers crack or get damaged, it’s easy enough to simply replace the broken pieces.  If a concrete pad becomes cracked you’re going to need to replace the entire thing if you want it properly repaired.

Cons

Movement

Concrete pavers can be susceptible to movement.  Often this is caused by freezing water combined with alternating warm and cold temperatures, but it can also be due to growing tree roots or simple settling of the ground.  

Weed Growth

Without proper sealing, the cracks between concrete pavers can provide ideal spaces for weed growth.  These growing plants could even cause the pavers to move over time. To prevent this you’ll need to reapply the sealing regularly and keep an eye out for growing weeds.

Base Preparation

Installation of concrete pavers requires the proper preparation of a base beforehand.  After excavation of any grass and the top layer of soil, a gravel bed of four to six inches needs to be laid down and properly compacted.  The gravel needs to be topped with an inch or so of sand, into which the pavers are installed.