We conduct all our work on driveways and patios in strict accordance with the five step programme as defined by Brett. This programme is detailed below:
Step One

The all - important preparation

1. Mark out the area to be paved and remove all the topsoil or existing surfacing to a depth so that the finished level is at least 150mm below the damp proof course of any adjoining house or building.

If the area is flat it will be necessary; for drainage purposes, to create a slight slope during the excavation, dropping 25mm over 1 metre across the width (1:40) and 25mm over 2 metres along the length (1:80).

2. Compact the excavated area with the plate vibrator, digging out any soft spots and filling them with sub-base material.

3. Install surface water drainage channel if required, ie if the paved area slopes towards the house/building or any other place where water run-off would not be welcome.

Recessed manhole covers should also be installed at this stage if required.

Step Two

Install all edge restraints, whether kerb's or edgings, by setting firmly in concrete to correct levels.

  Natural Sandstone (Fossil Mint) Stage One
Step Three

Lay over the entire area to be paved a geotext membrane then lay the sub-base material within the edge restraints and compact it firmly with the plate vibrator; depending on how well it compacts, you may need to go over the whole area between 5 and 10 times. It is essential that this sub-base is firm and to the right level.

Step Four

Spread the sharp sand to a depth of 50mm, compact it with the plate vibrator and spread a further 15mm of sharp sand over the area as a loose screed. Correctly level the screed with a rigid piece of timber or screed bar drawn along guide rails.

Step Five

Lay one course of blocks on the sand along all the edge restraints. They may be laid long ways against the edge ('a stretcher course') or with short side against the edge ('a header course') depending on personal preference.

  Natural Sandstone (Fossil Mint) Stage Two
Step Six

Lay the blocks hand tight only; with a joint gap of 2-5mm, starting in one corner, and at the bottom if there is a slope.

Step Seven

Sweep the area thoroughly after it has been laid - particularly if a block cutter has been used - to remove all chips and fragments. Then check to ensure there are no damaged blocks; if there are any, this is the time to replace them.

Step Eight

Compact the whole area with two or three passes of the plate vibrator.

Step Nine

Sweep Jointing Sand over the entire area, ensuring it gets right into all the joints between the blocks.

Step Ten

Vibrate the whole area gain to force down the Jointing Sand and fill any gaps which appear in the joints. Leave any surplus sand on the surface for the wind/rain to wash into joints. Alternatively sweep off the surface and re-sand if necessary.

  Natural Sandstone (Fossil Mint) Stage Three
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