Everything you need to know about Granite: Understanding common durable pavers
Granite paving has been in high demand for quite some time. This is because it comes with certain qualities that make it an excellent paver. To start with, it is a highly durable stone that can withstand colossal weight, which makes it ideal for both foot and vehicle traffic. This stone is also resistant to the fading and scorching effects of the sun, scratching, and even chipping at the edges. Granite is also able to withstand high amounts of direct heat, which makes it ideal for fireplaces and fire pits in the patio.
What makes this material an excellent paver is its hardiness once installed. It is not prone to shifting as the ground moves, buckling, or even cracking. This makes it able to withstand different weather changes, including freezing winter temperatures.
Installation and maintenance
Installing granite pavers is relatively cheaper in comparison to other paving material. This is because the purchase and installation prices are usually quoted lower in comparison to sandstone, for instance. This means you get great aesthetics, functionality, and durability, for a steal. Depending on where you want the installation done, it takes between 5 days and 2 weeks.
The complexity of the design, size of the installation, and the incorporation of decorative paving stones such as bluestone will determine how long it will take. Working with a qualified contractor also means that the paving will be sealed after installation. Sealing is the first line of defense against staining and weeds.
With proper sealing, granite pavers are easy to maintain. This is largely due to the stone is not susceptible to some of the elements that damage other paving material such as concrete. Essentially, granite pavers require you to carry out three things for maintenance:
Clean them regularly
This is easy to do and requires a broom, hose, and some water. Sweep the pavers once a week and hose them down to remove mud and debris. This is an active stain prevention measure since it removes material such as leaves, which coupled with moisture could leave green and brown markings on the stone. Maintaining clean pavers is one of the best ways to prevent stains on the stone, which will require a professional to remove safely.
Remove weeds and debris
Weeds are especially dangerous to the grouting, since the roots burrow through the cement, making it weak and brittle. It results in loose tiles and opens them up to accidental damage. Removal of weeds should be done at least once a season, either by hand or using herbicides. Some herbicides are capable of killing the roots and preventing regrowth, while others can prevent seeds from germinating.
Replace broken pavers
This is an important practice to maintain the structural integrity of your paving installation and to prevent your yard from looking horrible. Broken pavers weaken the weight distribution on the pavement, making the adjacent tiles vulnerable to breaking. If left unattended, broken tiles may end up costing you more in overall maintenance work.
Replacing a broken tile is something you can do at home if you enjoy DIY activities. Take a narrow putty knife and remove the grouting from the pavement, lift the broken tile pieces and even out the bed underneath. Install a new tile in its place. Using an accredited tile installation and repair service is however the best way to go. You get to have the broken pavers reinstalled professionally, and it is also a chance to carry out other maintenance work on the pavers at the same time.
Granite pavers are available in polished and unpolished variants. Polished granite is smooth and reflective, making it great for countertops, walls, or indoor installations. Unpolished granite is better for the outdoors since it is resistant to fire, does not absorb heat, and is non-slip.
Depending on where it is mined the stone comes in a variety of colors, including shades of black, grey, brown, and beige. It can also be used to create durable elegant installations, in conjunction with other materials, such as cobblestones, to create vibrant patterns. Here are some of the common uses for granite pavers:
1. Pool coping: This is granite tiles are installed as an edge to your pool. It is a great way to maintain the aesthetics around your pool while maintaining safety. Granite, being non-slip, provides proper friction which is desirable in a wet environment. Granite is also resistant to the salts in the pool water, and with proper sealing, can withstand common pool cleaning products.
2. Paving: Granite tiles are used to create intricate, yet long-lasting outdoor projects in most homes. They are used for garden paths, patios, walkways, and garden islands. The tiles also have the added advantage of creating continuity with the rest of the landscape, while remaining resistant to erosion.
3. Wall cladding and flooring: Cladding is the practice of covering your wall with a different material, to give it a facelift. Granite pavers can be used to customize the exterior of your home as a way to revamp the look. They are used everywhere from the exterior of the entire house to the pillars by the gate.
Granite is also used for indoor flooring as an alternative to ceramic tiles which are prone to cracking, and porcelain or marble which are more expensive. It is especially useful in areas that are prone to getting wet such as bathrooms and kitchens since it is resistant to water damage.
4. Driveways: Granite being one of the most durable construction materials available, makes durable driveways that are capable of taking a lot of abuse. This makes granite driveways preferred around office buildings and malls. It is able t handle the high pressure that is generated by constant foot traffic, and motor vehicles both stationary and in motion. Stationary vehicles, for instance, are twice as likely to cause damage, due to the sustained pressure caused by the immobile weight.
Granite pavers around driveways also have the added advantage of increased traction. In places with snowfall, ice, or heavy rain, this is a great way to improve safety.