Sep 9, 2009

New Trends in Brick Pavers

It is always hard to reinvent the wheel, but there are some new trends in Brick Pavers. After installing, repairing, cleaning, sealing, and maintaining brick paver patios, sidewalks, & driveways for over 25 years, you begin to see the same old - same old designs and installations of paving stones and modular retaining walls. Below are some new brick paver products that are rejuvenating the paver industry.

This is the new HOT trend in brick pavers today! With the need for more environmental conscious pavements, these interlocking concrete pavers meet the requirement. Commercial and Industrial parking lots & roadways are pushing these permeable pavers to the forefront. Now most brick paver manufacturers, like Unilock or Fendt, are producing many new styles and colors that are appealing to the brick paver residential market. Permeable pavers basically allow ground or run off water to filter faster through the pavers down into the subsoil or aggregate base while taking the strain off storm drains. The permeable paver design is a simple adjustment to the paver joints which are filled with an aggregate stone thus allowing for quick filtration below.

I believe this has been one of the best improvement products for brick pavers in the past 5 years. Polymeric sand is paver joint sand which has polymers in it to allow the joint sand to harden in the paver joints after sweeping in and wetting. This creates harden paver joints which will deter any weed growth or tracking into the home or pool. The other benefit of polymeric sand is that it is flexible enough for frost movement. It is NOT permanent and will require yearly touch ups but all my customers have been impressed. Polymeric sand is ever improving with more colors, strengths, and reduced setting time, and accessibility.

Brick Paver manufacturers are scurrying to produce new colors, textures, and shapes but the biggest push in paving stones is to mix and match these colors, textures, and shapes. This is referred to as "paver quilting", much like your grandmother making that stylish xmas quilt that you pull out once a year when she visits. This is a big advantage for brick pavers over stamped concrete, asphalt, and decks. I have to admit as a contractor it is a big headache to get the client to pick more colors, textures, and shapes, as well as, obtain the materials in a cost effective manner. But I am all for ways to install creative designs that consumers want and will enjoy for years to come. For many years it was the same old circle patterns or herringbones that flooded the paver patio market. Paver quilting is rejuvenating the brick paver appearance and advantage over other pavements.

The flexibility of brick pavers and retaining wall blocks have resulted in creative minds designing and installing outdoor grills, fireplaces, pizza ovens, and sitting walls. As the American public values the outdoor space or paver patio area as an additional room in their home, the need for grilling paver products and fireplace wall products have exploded. Contractors now have a choice of pre- built units or custom designing around the clients needs or appliances. Most of your brick paver installers are upselling these products to create a spectacular brick paver patio experience. Though these outdoor grills, fireplaces, ovens, or sitting walls come at a substantial cost, they are functional and permanent.

As an advocate of the brick paver market, I am encouraged by the steps made in producing new ideas and products that will expand the usefulness and functionality of brick pavers and modular retaining walls systems. When paving stones and landscape blocks can be used and enjoyed on a daily basis, the benefit of pavers is optimized.