Pavers vs. Concrete

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Pavers vs. Concrete, Which Material Best Suits You? There are a Few Things For You to Consider.

After you evaluate your goals and means for a patio, poolside, driveway, or walkway, you will be able to make the important decision of Pavers vs. Concrete. Poured concrete is installed in large, solid blocks and has the advantages of acid stains, pattern stamps, or rough, safety textures for better disability access. Pavers are interlocking tiles of concrete, and some people like their flexibility, color, and architectural appearance.

Of course, both pavers or stamped concrete have distinct advantages and disadvantages. Once you consider how you want to use your pavement, the size of your budget, your expectations of durability, and your design vision, one will probably emerge as your preferred choice. Keep in mind that, although both materials are made of concrete, can be colored, and form limitless shapes and sizes, they are nevertheless quite different.

Every aspect of your home is an investment, even your exterior surroundings. Walkways, driveways, and backyard patios all provide pathways that should be tied together to accent and enhance the overall personal and architectural style of your home. With that in mind, you should want these outdoor additions to do many things such as hold up against Mother Nature, be maintenance friendly and look and feel as great as it did when you first put them in. Concrete isn’t as durable as other materials, it’s extremely difficult to repair—and it may cost you more in the long run. No matter what your project is—patio, walkway, driveway—you want the result to bear harsh weather, from cold winter nights to warm summer days. And, ideally, you probably want minimum maintenance. No one wants a brand new walkway to look weathered and worn the next season.

What Are Pavers?

Pavers—also known as pavers or brick pavers—are a more durable alternative to concrete. Additionally, you can use them to beautify your space. And with easy upkeep, they are a long-lasting, cost-efficient investment over time. Brick pavers or pavers are used in driveways, patios, pool decks, and walkways. Pavers are individual pieces or “bricks.” The pieces interlock, but the natural joints between each piece allow them to expand and contract with the temperature, thus avoiding cracks that could turn an aesthetically pleasing driveway into an ugly mess and make a serious dent in your wallet.

Oldest Professions

The paving industry is one of the oldest professions in the world. In fact, it dates back as much as 5,000 years ago. Although paved roads have been around for 5,000 years, it wasn’t until 500 BC, when the Roman Republic began cutting 6-sided hexagon pavers for roads. After thousands of years of weather, wars and other elements, these same roads are still in existence today and not only that, they are still being used after all of those years.

Various Shapes, Colors, Sizes

Due to the availability of various shapes, colors, sizes of paver patios, they have become one of the most versatile paving materials available today.

The variety of pavers allows you to create an array of patterns using colors, shapes, sizes, textures and more for your walkways, patios, driveways, courtyards, decking, garden walls, and many other places to set your home apart from the rest of your neighborhood.

What’s So Bad About Concrete?

Extreme temperatures do not offer an ideal climate for concrete, in fact it causes concrete to crack along its surface. Repair costs for concrete begin to add up, and it becomes apparent where the cracks were patched, as it’s often difficult to achieve the same concrete color. If you replace concrete, you have to factor in the disposal costs, plus the price of the new concrete. Stamped concrete simply means that the concrete is “stamped” into patterns similar to pavers, but all the risks associated with concrete still apply. The only benefit of concrete is that it’s an inexpensive option for surfacing.

Common Paving Material

Concrete has traditionally been one of the most common paving materials used. Its low cost per square foot makes it the natural choice of many homeowners, as it initially seems to be a relatively inexpensive option. But when it pertains to your home, you have to think long term.

Achieve Attractive Patterns

“Stamping” concrete is another way of trying to achieve the attractive patterns associated with actual pavers material. The stamping occurs after the concrete has been poured and before it begins to harden. Unfortunately, the problems associated with maintaining concrete are compounded with the addition of pattern and color.

Pavers Vs. Concrete: A Side-By-Side Comparison

When considering buying pavers vs concrete, you have to factor in initial costs, long-term costs, and the amount of maintenance you’re willing to put into the project. The durability, flexibility, and appearance of pavers make them a superior hardscape paving product in most situations. While the initial cost of stamped concrete may capture the interest of many consumers, research will show that years of maintenance and repair costs will far exceed the price of properly installed pavers.

Pavers Set Immediately

Pavers set immediately, you can apply pressure right away. Concrete has an unpredictable setting time, it can take anywhere from two hours, or as long as two days.

Custom Looks And Designs

Pavers come in a variety of colors, patterns, shapes and finishes, allowing you to create custom looks and design to your own personal aesthetic. Concrete is one color, however you can enhance the color, but it creates many problems in the future for replacements of cracks. Stamped concrete gives you the option of adding texture.

Easy To Repair

Pavers are easy to repair and are very affordable to fix. To repair, simply remove the cracked or broken piece and replace it with a new stone.

Concrete is difficult and quite costly to repair. Often times you can’t get the color of the replacement concrete to match the current, forcing you to rip up all of the concrete if you don’t want a patchy appearance.

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