A stone walkway is beautiful but if you don’t do it correctly it can be a tripping hazard and look awful within a year.
One of the biggest mistakes that homeowners make is not using the proper base for their pavers, they will typically dig down just far enough and set the pavers on the dirt or a small amount of limestone. With the weather swings that we have, the ground is always going through a freeze and thaw and with that comes movement, so without the proper base the pavers will sink and lift all over the place.
Here are a couple methods that we recommend to help you succeed and you will only need to do it once:
- Dig 10-12 inches into the ground
- Fill 8 inches with a stone gravel (A-gravel) and compact with a tamper
- Fill 1-2 inches with a finer grade gravel like a limestone, this will help create your flat surface and slope that you need. Make sure to slope everything so that water will run off.
Now you have a good base that will help prevent movement through the weather changes in the seasons.
Another great option is Gator Base, this is a great product especially for the DIYer, it will save you on digging and stone fill. With this you no longer need the 8″ stone base. All you need is 3/4″ of a sand or fine stone to create your flat base.
We recommend using two lengths of 3/4″ pipe to help slope everything nice and even. After that remove the pipes and fill the lines that they leave behind.
Now you are ready to install the Gator Base, it clicks together and you can walk on it right away and start laying your stone. The base helps prevent movement in the stone by distributing the weight off a single stone and across the entire base. It also creates a thermal blanket that will prevent freeze thaw movement in the stone. If you are just doing a simple flagstone walkway then you can cut the Gator Base to the size of the stone and use it the same way.
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