A paver driveway is one of the most durable and attractive additions you can have added to your landscape master plan. Due to the sheer number of paver types, their use is not limited to one particular type of landscape design.
While many are distinctively Old World and early 20th Century in appearance, others can be cast to emulate stone or concrete forms more apropos to modern landscaping and contemporary landscapes.
Pavers are cast masonry blocks that are geometrically shaped, very resilient, and made to look identical to stones or concrete. The advantage they offer over other hardscape surfaces is an astounding durability. Paver driveways will endure wear and tear far better than a concrete driveway.
Concrete, no matter how decorative or sophisticated it is made to appear, is still going to suffer the effects of time and usage. It will eventually crack, just like foundations tend to crack over time.
Paver driveways do not crack in this fashion because they are made of many different paver stones that aren’t mortared together. The joints between the pavers absorb the shock of vehicle traffic and the inevitable, slow movement of the Houston landscape beneath them.
You can count on one of these driveways performing reliably for decades, and for its appearance to maintain a superb aesthetic that adds curb appeal to the front of your property. Pavers can look like masonry blocks, flagstone, brick surface, decorative concrete, or fine cut stone. Your professional landscape designer can help you choose the paver style that works best with your home architecture, front yard landscaping, and overall theme of outdoor living.
Remember, getting your driveway done with pavers is very much about establishing curb appeal and landscape aesthetic for your entire residence. Think of it as the first impression your home makes, and how important that first impression is to curb appeal.
Paver driveways are not mortared together because the shifting soil would create visible cracks in the mortar over time. What we do instead is build a base of either concrete or gravel and frame the entire driveway with a concrete or steel restraint. We then lay an inch of sand on top of this base, and we lay the pavers on top of the sand.
Sand is spread across the tops of the stones, where it falls between the interlocking grooves and creates the equivalent of a natural sealant that allows for a degree of movement without the presence of visible cracks. This sand sealant is so resilient that even if the concrete cracks or moves, the pavers can slide along the inch of sand without appearing to separate.
As with all high-end landscaping elements, a paver driveway is not cheap by any measure. We do not want to mislead people on this point. It represents a sizeable investment in a custom hardscape whose purpose is to introduce the home with a higher-than-normal degree of interest.
However, the fact that pavers are so innately tough under stress makes them one of the most low maintenance investments you can make around your home. Once you spend the money once, you do not have to revisit spending with additional repairs.