Routine maintenance will extend the life of your paving stones and reduce the need for future repairs. When installed on a well-prepared base, paving stones can create a high-quality surface that lasts for generations and requires very little upkeep. Despite being relatively low-maintenance, there are still basic steps you can take to keep your paving stone surface in the best possible condition. Consider the following tips:
- If you notice weeds growing between your paving stones, it’s because windblown seeds have lodged themselves in the joints, not because they’re growing organically out of the bedding sand. You can use herbicides to get rid of them, but consider using an environmentally-friendly product that won’t pollute surrounding water supplies when you wash it off the surface. You may also consider having a professional seal the pavers and joints—it’ll lock the sand in the joints and make it impossible for weeds to grow.
- If your paving stones are colored, that means pigment was added to the concrete mix during the production process. The pigments are held in place by the cement in the concrete mix, so their properties don’t really change over time. As your paving stones wear down from car/foot traffic or weather conditions, the color pigments start to erode and gradually change color. One way to slow down the rate of this color change is to clean and seal the surfaces of your pavers, which can also prevent dirt from lodging in the surface.
- Your paving stones won’t necessarily be damaged by a car that’s leaking oil, but the stains can be difficult to remove. The best course of action is to treat stains as soon as possible—the longer they stay on the surface, the deeper they’ll penetrate. Quickly wipe off any surface oil, apply some liquid detergent, allow it to soak for a few minutes, and wash your pavers with hot water. If a stain is particularly tough or has been sitting for too long, it might require several treatments. Badly stained pavers can be removed and replaced.