Choosing Patio Pavers

Collection by Liuba Bejarano

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There are so many options on the market for patio pavers, it can be hard to choose.

Liuba Bejarano
Rubber Tiles - Made from recycled tires. They’re designed to go over any surface, and their light weight means you can use them on decks. They look like concrete tiles, with finishes that resemble brick and terra cotta. They’re fairly new on the market, so the jury is still out on how they perform over time.  Rubber tiles are strictly a DIY material, and they snap together with connector clips. They’re good for quickly covering up old, cracked, worn patio surfaces. You’ll pay $3-$5 per sq…

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Brick Pavers - Classic with lots of character, you can explore your creative chops by setting them in intricate patterns. Thinner than typical “builder bricks” used on home siding, they’re made to hold up under heavy foot traffic.  Pro-installed brick patio, you’ll pay $12-$18 per sq. ft., professionally installed.

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Flagstone, Slate, Marble - Most stone pavers are sandstone, limestone, slate, or granite. The materials you select will be especially cost-efficient if they come from locally operated quarries; check your local suppliers first.  Stone pavers are cut into modular shapes; 6-by-12, 12-by-12, and 18-by-18-inch sizes are standard. Uncut pavers have rough, irregular edges and come in various sizes.  Pro installation is $12-$28 per sq. ft., depending on the stone you choose.

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Decomposed Granite - Made up of very small pieces of granite, ranging in size from ¼-inch to the size of sand. It’s affordable and some love the crunchy texture underfoot, and the way rain disappears, no puddles!  You’ll have to refresh and replenish the granite, as the surface erodes with time. Figure $1 per sq. ft. every three years for upkeep.  Cost: $1.50 per sq. ft. without stabilizers, $2 with stabilizers.

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Concrete Pavers -  Shapes, sizes, textures, and colors galore. Some are plain; some look like real stone; others have intricate patterns embossed on their surfaces. They’re readily available at home improvement centers and are well-suited to DIY patio projects.  Interlocking concrete pavers have tabs and slots so they fit together like a puzzle. Minimal maintenance, installs quickly.  Concrete pavers are $2-$8 per sq. ft. For pro installation, you’ll pay $7-$15 per sq. ft., including…

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Concrete - Can be finished off in lots of imaginative ways — brushed, acid washed, scored, and stamped — and lots of colors. Its long lifespan and relatively inexpensive installation make it a popular choice.  Stamped concrete can simulate flagstone, brick, cobbles, and other decorative patterns, but adds about $3 per sq. ft. to installation costs.  Figure $6-12 per sq. ft., depending on finish and color. For colder climates, add $1-$2 per sq. ft for specialized base and concrete additive.

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Mixing Materials - You’re not stuck with one type of patio paver. Combining different materials — such as brick with concrete, or stone with rock trim, can create a cool, customized look.  Designer Chris Fenmore notes, “Too much hardscape can be tedious. I often like to use four-inch troughs separating masonry from concrete that can be filled with gravel, beach rocks, or ground cover. They provide a bit of relief from the hardscape and nice detail, adding to the custom look of the yard.”

Your Guide to Choosing Patio Pavers

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