Have you ever wanted to build a patio for your backyard? Maybe you have put off doing it because you didn’t want to have to deal with pouring concrete. There is another way you know. My husband and I built one using sand and stone pavers that we purchased from the local home improvement store. The pavers cost us roughly $1 a piece and the sand was around $4 a bag. All told, it cost us less than $100 and one day’s time to build one. Here’s how we did it:
Prepare the Patio Area
The first thing that we did was to mark out the area for our patio. Then we dug down about 3 inches deep with our shovels and made a level, rectangular area for the patio pavers. Once we had a level surface, we removed as many weeds and other debris as we could find by hand. Then we sprayed the area with weed killer in order to deter new weeds from forming. Some people also opt to place a layer of heavy duty, polyethylene film down on the ground for that same reason. We have done that in the past with our other homes, but not this time. This time we chose not to do that because the water table in our area is high and water has a way of pooling on the ground after a heavy rain storm. We felt that the plastic would create flooding issues for us. That’s why we decided not to use it.
Afterwards, we spread sand in the area that we had mapped out for our patio. We used enough sand to create a depth of 2 inches. We did not go deeper than that because the soil in our area already has a lot of sand in it. Then we took out the garden hose and wet the sand. Once the sand was wet, we used a tamper to compress it and a 2×4 to make it level.
Position Patio Pavers
The next thing that we did was to start positioning the patio pavers where we wanted them to go. We would also periodically stop and make sure that the patio pavers were level. Once all the patio pavers were in position, we placed a few shovelfuls of wet sand on top of the pavers and let it dry like that.
After the top layer of sand was dry, we took an outdoor broom and swept the excess sand into the seams between the pavers. Then we grabbed the garden hose and gently re-wet the patio pavers. We added the extra sand and water in order to help the patio pavers settle properly. We had to repeat the sanding and re-wetting process multiple times throughout the day. Once we felt that the patio pavers had settled properly, we brushed off the residual sand and started to enjoy our new patio.
Killeen Gonzalez has a history of completing home improvement projects with her family.
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