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How to cut concrete paving slabs

Updated February 21, 2017

Concrete paving slabs are precast, man-made stones that make up driveways, walkways, sidewalks and patios. Concrete slabs are easy to maintain and offer a durable surface. Concrete paving slabs come in a variety of sizes, shapes, styles, finishes and colours, allowing them fit into any landscaping theme. Paving slabs do not always exactly fit the area, making cutting necessary. The cutting method depends on the size of the concrete paving slab.

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  1. Measure and mark the paving slab for cutting. Draw guidelines with a professional crayon. A professional crayon will not wash away like other drawing tools when exposed to water from the wet saw.

  2. Load the wet saw with a carbide-tipped masonry blade.

  3. Place the paving slab on the wet saw next to the guide. Turn the wet saw on. Make sure the paving slab is not touching the blade.

  4. Push the paving slab to the blade. Do not force the slab through as this can cause the blade to break and cause serious injury to the operator. Use a push stick to guide the slab through to the other side of the blade.

  5. Measure and mark a cutting guideline on the surface of the slab.

  6. Equip the angle grinder with a masonry-cutting disc.

  7. Lay the slab on top of level of sand. Do not sink the slab into the sand; allow it to rest on top.

  8. Turn the grinder on and follow the guideline. Depending on the thickness, you may have to work back and forth allowing the grinder to cut deeper and deeper, rather than cutting through the slab on one pass.

  9. Draw a cutting guideline on the surface of the concrete paving slab.

  10. Lay the paving slab on level sand.

  11. Place a brick set chisel onto the guideline and lightly tap it with a masonry hammer. Move the chisel along the guideline to score a line into the paving slab.

  12. Place the brick set chisel into the scored line and tap with a masonry hammer. Work back and forth, deepening the score line as you move. Continue to deepen the cut until the cut is through the slab completely.

  13. Tip

    Wear safety glasses, gloves and a dust mask when cutting concrete paving slabs. Angle grinders or hammer and chisel are best for larger, difficult-to-move paving slabs.

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Things You'll Need

  • Safety glasses
  • Gloves
  • Dust mask
  • Professional crayon
  • Wet saw
  • Carbide-tipped masonry blade
  • Push stick
  • Angle grinder
  • Masonry-cutting disc
  • Sand
  • Brick set chisel
  • Masonry hammer

About the Author

Sal Marco began writing professionally in 2009. He has written many online home improvement articles based on his more than 20 years of experience in the home improvement and building industries. He has worked as both part of a team and as a site supervisor. Marco has a Bachelor of Science in management science from Kean University.

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