Care Tips for Your New Pavers
Pavers are unmatched for their beauty and durability. With these proper paver care tips from Winesett Nursery and Landscaping, you can provide functionality and enjoyment for you and your family for many years!
Regularly blowing or sweeping leaves and debris off the paved surface, especially before heavy rains, helps prevent organic stains from ever being a problem; however if you do see some organic stains don’t panic! Most organic stains disappear on their own, but the process can be sped up by using a stiff bristle (plastic or natural) brush and an outdoor surface cleaner such as Simple Green Oxy Concrete Cleaner®. When it comes to removing liquids, like oil, grease or beverages, dab them promptly with an absorbent material such as paper towels or a cloth to remove the excess. The spillage should be soaked up, not rubbed, to prevent spreading it over a large area and driving the spill deeper into the concrete, where it could turn into a stain. For oil and grease stains a dish soap, like Dawn, is a safe place to start. The surfactants in dish soaps are designed to remove oil and grease they’re gentle enough to be used without issue on your pavers. We recommend using grill mats under grills and cooking equipment to avoid grease and oils stains.
Spring is a good time to clean the paver surface more thoroughly. There are many outdoor surface cleaners for this purpose. Use a stiff push broom and rinse very thoroughly to remove any grime and remaining product after cleaning. Be sure to follow the product instructions for the application of cleaning solution and safety. Always test products in an inconspicuous spot first before applying the entire surface.
The polymeric sand used in the joints greatly reduces maintenance by minimizing weed growth and ant activity; however, it does not prevent all chances of weeds or ants. If left unaddressed, these activities can shift pavers apart over time. Be sure to periodically apply an appropriate control product if needed. We recommended Roundup Extended Control for any weeds in paver joints as it also includes a weed seed suppressant. Power Washing.
Power washing is a fast and effective way to clean pavers and restore them to their original splendor. When using a high-pressure spray, never spray too close to the stone that you damage the appearance of the surface. Care should also be taken to not blow or wash the sand from the joints. The best approach is to use a wide spray nozzle, and angle the spray so that it is kept from directly penetrating the joints. For residential and commercial stone pavers, power washing may only be necessary once every 3 to 4 years.
Things to Avoid With Paver Care
Pavers are strong, it’s true, but they’re not indestructible. Here are the main things that we advise to avoid when it comes to maintenance.
Avoid Deicing Chemicals
When used according to their directions and in small amounts, deicing chemicals shouldn’t present a problem, but as the surface of the pavers wear over time and become more vulnerable, these harsh substances can cause unnecessary damage.
Avoid Paver Sealer
Pavers are naturally a low-maintenance solution, but sealing them actually requires more upkeep over time. The biggest reason our Virginia Beach landscaping company doesn’t recommend sealing pavers is the maintenance requirement, but sealer may also make your paver surfaces more slippery when wet so that should be considered before deciding on sealer products.
If you intend to seal your pavers you must wait at least 90 days for any efflorescence** that might appear as part of the natural weathering of the pavers. An efflorescence cleaner is recommended by most manufacturers prior to applying a sealer product. Reapplication should be done every three years to avoid discoloration and must be the same type of sealant.
**Efflorescence (calcium carbonate) is a white powder-like deposit which can appear on any concrete product. Efflorescence does not affect the structural performance or durability of concrete pavers and can appear within months of installation and wears away with the natural weathering of the pavers. Unless you intend to seal your pavers we do not recommend use of an efflorescence cleaner product since the weather naturally removes any efflorescence as the pavers age.