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How To Fix A Sinking Paver Patio

Make Sure That Your Foundation Is Strong

How to Repair Sinking Patio Pavers

One of the best ways to ensure that your patio pavers wont sink is to build a strong foundation from underneath the stones. Dig at least 6-10 inches and dig deeper if you have problems with poor drainage or lower soil.

Make sure that your base is even, compact and strong before you lay down your stones.

How To Repair A Paver Patio

Posted by Chase Coates on December 15, 2017

Paver problems?

You’re not alone.

Your paver patio looked so great when it was first installed, didn’t it? All those bricks perfectly aligned.

But time takes a toll on paver surfaces. A crack here, a crooked brick there. And why do some pavers look like theyre sinking into the ground?

When the time comes, do you know how to repair a paver patio? How to fix sunken pavers? How to replace broken pavers?

Don’t worry you’ll have those pavers looking pretty again in no time.

How Do I Keep My Patio Pavers Clean

  • Make sure to clean up any dirt and debris regularly using a leaf blower or a broom.
  • React to stains as soon as you notice them for easier removal.
  • Keep the pavers dry by sweeping any standing water after rain.
  • If you notice moss forming, remove it quickly. You can also use a mix of water and bleach to prevent moss growth.

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Remove Your Bedding Layer

Next, remove the sand from your base. Leave a few inches of sand around the perimeter of the area for a point of reference.

While you are removing the sand, be sure to scrape and moss and sand off of the exposed perimeter. That way, when you re-lay pavers, theyll form a tight seal. Once youre done, youll have the gravel layer left to work on.

Level Sand With A Trowel And A Straight Piece Of Wood

Save Thousands and Fix Your Patio Pavers Yourself

Level the sand using a trowel and the straight end of a piece of wood.; We are using a 2×2 scrap wood because it happens to be the exact same thickness as the pavers we are leveling.

Running the piece of wood back and forth allows you to evenly distribute the sand in the area.; Also with this board being the same thickness, it provided a guide for how much sand should be applied.; When the height of the board reached the string we had in place we knew we were on target with the right amount of leveling sand.

This is where using a level is critical.; Using the;Empire 16 in. True Blue Digital Box Level we were able to gauge how level the ground was and measure the degree of the slope as we extended down the patio.; The True Blue Digital Box Level has an audio indicator that would beep as we approached a level surface.

This tool makes make this task seamless and quick.

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Why Do Outdoor Pavers Sink

Sinkage is a completely normal and natural process. As the earth moves, underground waters flow so its just a shift in the soil beneath your property.

However, if you think the problem is bigger and it may cause problems with the foundations of your home, get in touch with a professional right away. He will be able to determine whether there is an actual danger for your house and what are your options.

Are you in need of reliable handyman to take good care of your property? Weve done all kinds of projects and will do our best!

Level Up The Uneven Area With Grit Sand

NOTE* Before you begin to level up the area that has sunk with grit sand it may be worth investigating why the paving had sunk in the first place? If you are confident that it is not because of a broken drain or inadequate depth and strength of the stone sub-base,; you can begin to repair the; paved area.

Always use grit sand and not building sand when you lift and relay block paving. You can purchase grit sand with free home delivery here. The grit sand works because it supports your paving better and allows for a better drainage should you get a penetration of water into your paving block joints. Building sand will just become soggy and hold the water rather than letting it drain through.

Grit sand is available in small 25 kg bags or large 1 tonne bags, although if you need the 1 tonne bag you have serious problems with sinking and I would call in a paving expert to give your block paving an inspection. Grit sand wherever possible should be kept out of heavy rain. This stops one area of sand being water saturated and makes laying the sand easier and lighter.

Begin by using the straight edge again to judge the amount of grit sand needed to fetch the level up to the appropriate height that is needed to level the paving with the surrounding block paving, once you have leveled your paving.

Example Lift and relay block paving calculator

Other methods of leveling your sand

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How To Repair A Paver Patio That Has Dips And/or Bulges

Posted on:Rick Hamilton

If your paver patio was not properly installed and/or it has shifted underneath, it may have developed dips and/or bulges that are unsightly and drain poorly.

No need for despair! ;Unlike concrete and asphalt surfaces, paver patios can be easily repaired with a few tools, some additional materials and little bit of your labor. ;Of course, if your patio is still under warranty, just pick up your phone and ask your contractor to come fix it! ;To keep this as short as possible, well focus on minor repairs you can do yourself.

And if our considering a new paver patio, dont let this repair article discourage you. ;Most of these kind of problems arrise from poor workmanship and contractors that dont stand behind their work. ;Paver patios are;excellent;solutions for areas with freeze/thaw cycles like in Cincinnati and will provide years of enjoyment if done right! ;And thats the only kind of patios Distinctive Patios installs. ;Now, on with the repairs.

  • How big is the problem? ;Is this a small isolated problem or is the entire patio a mess. ;With the former, you can use a string line or level to mark the problem area with chalk since it will be harder to locate the problem area after your start the repairs. ;For the later, you may need to remove all the pavers to do the repair. ;This is a much more involved project and you might want to get some help.

Compact The Relaid Paving

How To Repair/Fix Sinking Block Paving Driveway Patio Stonemason Landscapes

It is important that any relaid block paving is compacted. But before any compaction of the block paving takes place you first need to sweep clean the paved area. This stops any debris such as small stones being vibrated down between the joints of the paving. If this happens it can distort the laying pattern and overall design of the driveway or patio.

Compaction should be done with a whacker plate or straight-edged timber & hammer. This should be done to the whole paving area 2 or 3 times. Particular attention should be made when compacting the edges of relaid paving. The paving edges need to match up to the existing paving that has not been relaid. It needs to be level to stop any trip points. Care should also be taken around sensitive areas such as walls , drains or inspection covers.

To compact the relaid paving you can use a large flat piece of timber that covers the area that has been relaid. Place the timber on the relaid block paving and firmly strike the timber several times with the hammer. Make sure you hit the wood and not the blocks. Lift the timber to check that the paving is level. Repeat until you are confident the paving has become firm and stable.

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How To Fix A Paver Walkway That Is Sinking

  • William on Aug 21, 2017If it’s only part that is sinking, just remove those pavers fill in with sand and replace the pavers. If most or all of it is sinking then it will need to be removed and redone. Probably the base was not compacted enough or improperly installed.
  • Schufrei on Aug 21, 2017There’s a process called “mudjacking” or “foamjacking” that some landscapers can do. They raise the concrete slabs until they’re even and then use a tube to inject the “jacking” substance underneath. Do a search for “mudjacking.”
  • Michele Pappagallo on Aug 21, 2017Most likely you will need to take it up and start over. After removing the pavers, make sure the ground is level. Smooth out any areas as needed. Then, lay a thin layer of small gravel as a base to prevent the pavers from sinking again….cover it up with a layer of sand, and put the pavers back in. The sand will help level the pavers on top of the gravel. Fill in any gaps with additional sand.

Remove The Bedding Layer

After youve cleared the affected paving stones, you have to remove the sand from the base, but make sure to leave a few inches of sand around the perimeter for reference purposes. You should scrape moss and sand off while youre doing this to make sure that youll have a good seal once youre re-laying the pavers.

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How To Keep Pavers From Sinking

Approximately one of our four friends has built a beautiful paver patio for their house. Honestly, it offers an aesthetic look in the backyard and extends the overall design of your living space. But there is an annoying problem with these patios. As most of them are built and repaired by common contractors, the premature sinking of its surface can take place. The beautiful patio may start losing its youth within a week due to some hard rain on it. Maybe you have also encountered this annoying problem now worried about the entire surface. You should be, but as now you are here, you can consider half of your work is done. We are going to show how to keep pavers from sinking with some simple tactics in this article.

Most of the patios are made from brick pavers. These pavers are set in a basket weave pattern so that each and every brick fits perfectly with the ground. Once the sand is leveled perfectly, the workers start to lay them following the pattern. Then fill the gaps with additional sand around them. Although this is an ordinary process of establishing pavers and every contactor will follow these processes, the sands can wash away with a small or heavy amount of rain. Heavy rain also develops low spots, and due to all these situations, pavers usually sinks down. No matter what the reason is, the problem is yours, and it is hampering the overall look of your backyard. So, it is up to you to solve this problem. Lets how you can do that.

Prep The Area By Setting A Reference Point

Repairing Brick Patio

Using a spike and some string we placed the spice at the area that had the perfect elevation.

We then ran the string down the length of the tiles we wanted to level, ensuring that the string was level by using a binder clip with a mini level attached to it.;

Running the string down the entire length of the pavers and patio area that we wanted to level provided a visual reference when applying the sand later in the process.; This preparation step is a way of streamlining the leveling process.

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Add Crushed Stone Dust

Crushed stone dust or sand is used directly under the pavers because it can be levelled and compacted easily. The stone dust can be purchased in bags or in bulk.

Using a shovel, spread the stone dust in the area you’re working. It only needs to be roughly level. Since my steps had existing concrete borders, I was able to use them as a reference. By filling the stone dust to a certain point, then tapping down a paver , it was fairly easy to find just the right amount of stone dust to raise the pavers back up to level. For most of the steps, I had to add more towards the front of the step since that is where the pavers had sunken the most.

If you’re filling a large area, use a long, straight 2×4 or a bubble level to help spread and level the stone dust. You may want to get some help from a second person.

Why Are Your Pavers Loose

Although its hard to pinpoint the reasons behind the loosening of your pavers, there are some potential culprits you should be aware of from now on. This will help you perform an optimal maintenance in the future, as youll know how to trace the problem back to its root.

How to Fix Loose Pavers

  • If you didnt use spacers when installing your pavers to make uniform spaces, then there is too much space between them. Close-tight pavers arent just for looks: its to make the whole surface stronger and stabler.
  • Did you compact the sand base? If you didnt, then a shifting base could have dislodged your pavers.
  • If you skimped filler sand, then theres not enough sand to keep the pavers in place.
  • Pavers usually start wearing around the edges when theyre old enough. This can be fixed with a proper edging installation, though.
  • Are your pavers inclined? Do they let water flow smoothly? If theyre not, they will absorb moisture and get damaged.
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    Pull Up The Affected Stones

    Once you have identified the cause of your problem, you can start the repair by pulling up the sunken paving stones and those adjacent to it. You have to measure 12-16 inches past the affected area in every direction so that youll have a good reference for the grade. Remove the first paver by using a putty knife, screwdriver or paver puller.

    How To Repair A Sinking Stone Patio

    Fixing a Sunken Paver Patio

    wikiHow is a wiki, similar to Wikipedia, which means that many of our articles are co-written by multiple authors. To create this article, 18 people, some anonymous, worked to edit and improve it over time. This article has been viewed 93,537 times.Learn more…

    Patio stones sink from unstable ground, normally caused by improper drainage. The only way to permanently correct this is to stabilize the ground and allow the water to drain away. If your patio is at the bottom of a hill or in a depression in your yard, you might want to think about re-landscaping your yard.

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    Broken Paver Patio & Walkway Repairs Costs

    Pavers are usually much cheaper to install and repair. A whole paver patio only runs an average of $1,500 nationally, about half the cost of concrete.

    Brick set in mortar requires a stonemason for professional grade repairs. They charge about $75 an hour, though it varies depending on location.

    For brick and concrete paver patios without artistic features, a homeowner can save money by doing the repairs. A DIY fix will only cost the price of the materials, or about $0.50 per paver.

    How Do You Fix A Low Spot On A Paver Patio

    4/5fixpatiopaverpaverspaverpatioslow spots

    Repair loose pavers by adding sand under the paver.

  • Remove the loose pavers one at a time.
  • Pour 1 cup of sand into each hole of every removed paver.
  • Place each paver back into the same hole that it was removed from.
  • Spread sand over the top of the pavers after repairing.
  • Additionally, why are my pavers sinking? If pavers are sinking, it might be an issue of improper compaction of the base material. If it loosens over time, the pavers can begin to sink. Or, it’s also possible that not enough gravel was used in the first place.

    Beside this, how do you level a sunken patio paver?


  • Prep the area by setting a reference point. Using a spike and some string we placed the spice at the area that had the perfect elevation.
  • Remove sunken paver.
  • Apply sand to the area.
  • Level sand with a trowel and a straight piece of wood.
  • Reset paver.
  • Brush sand between the pavers to prevent movement.
  • How do I keep my pavers from moving?

    Prevent the pavers from shifting around by adding a solid edge to your patio. You can use a cement lip, plastic or metal edging. When you’re finished, spread fine sand over the patio and sweep it into the cracks to help hold the bricks in place. You might consider using polymeric sand for increased longevity.

    How to Fix Uneven Concrete Driveways

  • Surface Preparation. To bond effectively, an overlay needs a clean surface.
  • Setting Up Forms.
  • How to Build a Raised Patio with Retaining Wall Blocks

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    How Do I Fix Them

    1. First step is to lift the old pavers using a trowel, flathead screwdriver or something that is sturdy and has a thin straight edge. As gently as possible try to pry up the end of each paver. Sometimes the use of a second straight edge will help in this process. Use a rubber mallet or a piece of wood to hit on the pavers if they are wedged in to tight, in order to loosen them up. Once you have them up take the time to clean any excess sand around the edges to make the re-installation process go a little smoother.

    2. Use a straight edge to scrap out the now exposed area in order to level it out the best you can. Apply more concrete sand or bedding material in the area to bring the level to no more than 1/4″ above the bottom of the other pavers still in place. Use a straight edge or some sturdy pipe if possible to ensure the sand is laid evenly.

    3. At this point you can relay the pavers in the same pattern as before. Once the pavers are in place you can use a rubber mallet to pound them down until level with the existing pavers. Leaving the sand or bedding material no more than 1/4″ above the bottom of the existing pavers in step 2 ensures that when you pound them with the rubber mallet that they don’t go down to far.

    4. The final step is to apply the jointing sand. Polymeric sand is recommended to ensure the joints stay sealed and lock together. Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s installation steps to be sure that is correctly done.


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