The Benefits Of Concrete Pavers VS Poured Concrete Patios

Concrete Pavers VS Poured Concrete - Image courtesy of Belgard

Concrete Pavers VS Poured Concrete - Image courtesy of Belgard

Why Concrete Pavers are Better Than Poured Concrete In Northern California

Outdoor hardscaping projects can add value and enjoyment to your home. Creating an outdoor patio that is functional, durable, and the perfect gathering place for family and friends is on many homeowner's project lists. If you're considering adding an outdoor patio you have several options for materials. Some are more cost-effective, some are more durable and others are easier to maintain.

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When you're planning your project, consider your options. Two of the most popular is using concrete pavers or having a poured concrete patio installed. Both offer different advantages depending on your needs.

Poured Concrete

Poured concrete slabs are typically used in new construction and by homeowner's for two primary reasons; poured concrete is relatively easy to install and costs less than other alternatives. Today, you have a little versatility. Concrete can be colored and with the development of stamped concrete, offer homeowners a choice of different designs and textures.

Concrete Pavers

Concrete pavers are individual pieces. They're available in a wide variety of colors, textures, and styles. Modern manufacturing has been able to match a variety of natural materials in terms of color and texture. Many are interlocking which offers homeowners a flexible system that is extremely durable.

Let's look at some of the pros and cons of poured concrete versus concrete pavers to help you make the smart choice for your outdoor patio project.

The Pros and Cons of a Poured Concrete Patio

As a general rule, concrete slab construction is generally less expensive per square foot than the alternative. You can expect to pay 15 – 25% more for paving stones. Poured concrete is an affordable option in the short term if you're okay with a plain slab. If you decide to upgrade to stamped concrete, or you want to stain your concrete slab, a paving stone patio or driveway will cost you about the same, or even less in most cases.

The initial costs of segmental pavements over concrete or asphalt may be more, but it has been shown that the life cycle cost of an interlocking concrete pavement system over a 40 year period is actually less. This is because pavers make up a maintenance free pavement.
— Interlocking Concrete Paver Institute

Installing a poured concrete patio may have lower upfront costs but the long-term costs of repair and replacement will almost always negate your initial savings. While slabs are fairly easy to install, the material could take significant time to cure and dry and your space cannot be used during the curing process.

When comparing the cost of concrete pavers vs poured concrete, make sure your price quote for poured concrete installation includes excavation, grading, foundation prep, setting forms and pouring. Poured concrete slabs must be installed by competent professionals. If the prep work is not done properly the slab can crack when the ground flexes or if tree roots grow beneath the slab as it ages. Here in the Bay Area, minor earthquakes can cause significant damage to poured concrete that has been improperly installed. Improper grading can require a costly repair process. In not properly graded, you may find low spots that collect water after the first heavy rain resulting in staining or discoloration.

Concrete maintenance is relatively easy, but as it ages, a concrete slab can begin to crack requiring costly repair. Upgrading to stamped concrete can better hide cracks and stains, but your initial cost will increase significantly.

The Pros and Cons of Concrete Pavers

The upfront cost of paving stones can be more than poured concrete, primarily due to the installation process. Paver installation is a complicated process that includes excavation, grading, sub-base compaction, geotextile installation, base prep, laying the pavers, cutting the borders, preparing the bond beam, final compaction and sealing the pavers.

Where you'll gain value is that upon completion, your patio is ready to use and enjoy as there is no curing time required. If grading proves to be a problem down the road, repair is fast and easy. The original stones can be removed, the area regraded properly and the stones replaced.

Here are five key reasons concrete pavers are a smart investment for California homeowners living in the Bay Area:

• Stains and imperfections are easily hidden. If you stain a slab, it's permanent. With pavers, you can flip the tile or simply replace the stained paver. So your surface always looks perfect.

• Pavers are available in a wide range of colors, sizes, styles, and textures. Patterns can be mixed and matched to create a unique outdoor environment. You're only limited by your imagination.

• Installation is fast. As mentioned above, there's no time needed for curing. You can finish your installation at five o'clock and be barbecuing by five fifteen!

• It's easier to repair or make adjustments with pavers. When a concrete slab shifts, cracking can result in costly repairs that are visible, even when done by a professional. If I paver stone shifts, or in the unlikely event of cracking, simply remove the affected area, level and replace with the same pavers and it looks as good as new.

• Pavers offer better drainage. Pavers are solid under your feet, but because of all the joints between stones rain drains away more easily than from a solid surface like a concrete slab. This same feature makes pavers slip-resistant.

While pavers may cost a little more upfront, they offer plenty of short and long-term benefits including durability. When properly installed concrete pavers can last 20 years or more with no fading or cracking. They're easier and cheaper to repair, require little maintenance and are beautiful materials that can increase the value of your home.

If you live in the California Bay Area and are considering a new concrete patio, give our experts at Bayside Pavers a call at 866-287-2837.

We carry a wide selection of the highest quality concrete pavers available and offer expert professional installation. Contact our team about designing your next outdoor hardscaping project, or if you're in the East Bay, stop by our location in Concord, CA at 2455 Bates Ave, Ste K. If you're in the North Bay, visit our Santa Rosa location at 1619 4th Street Ste 12 for a Free Estimate.