In this how-to article we teach you how to install porcelain pavers – typical installation on a compact gravel and sand bed.
Please note that this method is rated for pedestrian foot traffic, so please review your paver installation instructions and consult a professional if you need an installation that can withstand heavier traffic like cars.
Lay out your paver installation area with at least 8-10” beyond the perimeter of where you want to place your pavers.
Excavate the area at least 4-6” deep, making any adjustments to accommodate your local geography and climate. Make sure to check your depth to ensure a proper elevation and slope.
Compact your base soil using a plate compactor, checking to ensure proper elevation and slope. This slope should be at least 2 degrees to ensure proper water drainage.
Install a geotextile over the compacted soil. This is a fabric specifically designed to be buried in the ground and helps with soil stability, erosion control, and drainage.
- Crushed Stone 2″
Place a layer of crushed stone – typically 2” deep – evenly over the geotextile, wet it, and then compact it with a plate compactor.
- Crushed Stone level
Place another layer of crushed stone evenly over the first later and then screed over with a level to ensure proper elevation and slope. Repeat the process of wetting and then compacting this layer.
- Bedding Sand
Place a 1” layer of bedding sand over the crushed stone, screeding to ensure your 2-degree slope, wetting, and compacting.
It is now time to set your pavers. Set out guidelines to help ensure straight edges. Place your pavers, making sure to use spacers to have a minimum 3/16” gap. You can use a rubber mallet to gently tap the pavers to be level and maintain the proper slope.
If you need to cut any pavers to fit into your design, make sure to use a wet saw with a blade made explicitly for porcelain.
Once all of your pavers have been placed, clean up the perimeter and install an edge restraint to ensure minimum movement.
Once complete, fill in the space between the pavers with polymeric sand (which is sometimes called paver, hardscape, or jointing sand), sweeping off the excess and wetting with water.