How to flagstone concrete steps

Written by j. cavan barry
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How to flagstone concrete steps
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Flagstone is a commonly used material for wall cladding and floors, mostly in exterior settings. While flagstone is available in several different varieties, the natural look is most common. As a natural material, flagstone offers a durable, strong, long-lasting finish that can suit just about any setting or environment. The application of flagstone to concrete steps is a generally straightforward task that can be successfully completed by using basic masonry tools.

Skill level:
Moderate

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Things you need

  • Wheel barrow
  • Mortar mix
  • Shovel
  • Brick trowel
  • Flagstone
  • Masonry hammer
  • Angle grinder with masonry blade
  • 2-foot level
  • Grout bag
  • Large sponge

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Layout flagstone pieces over the concrete step treads (horizontal portion) in your desired pattern. Leave about a 1/2- to 3/4-inch gap between each stone, to allow for a grout joint. Trim the stones to fit as necessary, using an angle grinder; refer to the angle grinder owner's manual for safety and operation instructions.

  2. 2

    Mix mortar in a wheel barrow (as directed on mortar packaging), using a shovel.

  3. 3

    Lift a stone from the top step and apply about a 3/4-inch layer of mortar to the bottom side. Press it to the concrete step tread; press the stone hard enough so that the mortar joint between the stone and the step compresses to about 1/2-inch. Work your way across the step, using this method.

  4. 4

    Repeat Step 3 on remaining concrete step treads, working your way from the top to the bottom of the stairs. Set a 2-foot level over the surface of the stones as you set them, to ensure a level step surface; correct the stones as necessary.

  5. 5

    Allow the mortar to completely cure as directed on its packaging, before moving on.

  6. 6

    Fill a grout bag about 3/4-full with mortar, and lightly twist the top of the bag closed.

  7. 7

    Evenly apply the mortar to the joints between stones, using the grout bag.

  8. 8

    Wipe any excess mortar from the stone joints using a large wet sponge; rinse the sponge in clean water as you work.

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