Aug 8, 2010

Another Repair of Brick Paver Patio Steps & Porch Step

Brick Paver Steps  Repair

Our continued brick paver repair services took us to another paver patio steps & front porch step reconstruction this past week.  For the sake of not sounding redundant, this blog post will be brief with before & after pics.  My previous post went into more detail regarding the enormous need for paver patio step repair through out Ann Arbor & Saline.

Settled Paver Steps
This raised pavers patio has been in for over 5 years, slowly the brick steps leading into the patio door wall and front porch began to settle & shift.  They were currently in desperate need of repair for safety & appearance purposes.  This client called in the brick paver expert and we began to solve their issue.

Once the base material below is compromised, the complete paver step structure is going to fail. Large gaps begin to allow water to erode behind and below the paver block steps & caps.  The brick paver landing on top begins to sink and tripping hazards begin to appear.

This client's front paver porch steps exhibited the "smiley face" appearance which occurs often when a contractor does not compact the interior base material properly.  They just fill in upwards as they build each step without compacting the base in 2-3" lifts when building brick steps.

Before reconstructing
As we did with the earlier brick paver step reconstruction, we completely tore down the entire structure and rebuilt from the ground up.  Upon tearing down the block & cap steps, we discovered a reason for the paver steps settling.  The landscape contractor did not fill in gaps or holes (see picture) in the modular retaining wall blocks as needed.  This resulted in an inferior step or wall construction that was destined to fail over time.  Open spaces allow for base settling, erosion, and reduces the overall mass of the step structure.  We did relevel, recompacted, & filled all joints and holes.

When properly installed, brick paver patio & porch steps can give years of performance & spectacular appearance. Paver steps do require some basic maintenance over the years but will be minimal in time & costs if addressed in the early stages of settling or erosion. I expect that these newly repaired paver steps will give many years of safety and appearance that a brick paver client expects.

Remember to address the first signs of the brick pavers settling in the top landing, block & caps sagging, or caps coming loose.  Small periodic paver repairs will avoid very costly reconstruction in the future.