How to Lay Block Pavers

Written by nora mayers
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How to Lay Block Pavers
Make an Impression With Pavers (Dreamstime LLC)

Your walkway gives visitors their first impression of your home. Brick pavers can make the difference between an ordinary walkway and stunning curb appeal. To ensure that your driveway turns out as beautifully as possible, and to avoid frustrated and wasted time, it's important to carefully follow the directions.

Skill level:
Moderately Challenging

Things you need

  • Sledgehammer
  • Pick axe
  • Pressure-treated lumber
  • Brick pavers
  • Screed board
  • Sand
  • Large gravel
  • Pea gravel
  • Landscaping spikes
  • Level

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    Make Your Front Walk Beautiful With Brick Pavers

  1. 1

    Decide upon your design and make a drawing. The most popular designs are basketweave, herringbone (at 45-degree and 90-degree angles) and stretcher. Basketweave pavers are easy because the bricks do not need to be cut.

  2. 2

    Remove the existing walkway. Use a sledgehammer and pick axe to break up the old sidewalk. The work will be easier if you create gaps or holes in the pavement to allow you to break and pry up the pieces.

  3. 3

    Dig out the new walkway area to a depth of approximately 8 inches. Lay pressure-treated lumber edging on either side. Once implanted, the top of the edging should be just barely visible above the walkway, so build up the area below the 6x6 with dirt to achieve this visibility. Hammer stakes or spikes into the dirt on the outside edge of the boards, to a depth approximately 1 inch below the top; repeat every 5 to 6 feet remaining consistent with spacing of the spikes.

  4. 4

    Pour a 2-inch bottom layer of large gravel into the dugout area and on top of that lay another 2 inches of pea gravel. Next lay landscape sheeting to suppress weeds and grass. Pour 2 inches of sand on top of the fabric, and use a screed board, at least as wide as the walkway, to smooth the sand. Remember that the edging should rise just slightly above the walkway, so keep the sand about 2 inches below the top of the edging. Verify with a carpenter's level that the sand is even.

  5. 5

    Lay the brick pavers, pressing them as tightly together as possible. With a rubber mallet, tap them firmly into place. When the bricks are in place, spread sand over them to fill in cracks and wet the walkway down. Congratulate yourself, you've just build a walkway.

Tips and warnings

  • You can use concrete or brick edging, but wood is less expensive and the easiest to install.
  • You can use a jackhammer to break up the sidewalk, but they are uncomfortable and can be difficult to handle.
  • Be sure to include a drainage slope away from the house of about 1/4 inch per linear foot.

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