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Paving in backyard. - DIY First timer

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  1. #1
    Apprentice (new member)
    Join Date
    Sep 2018

    Post Paving in backyard. - DIY First timer

    Hi guys,

    I am laying pavers in a section (about 12 - 15 sqm) of my backyard. I have excavated about 100 mm of clay soil from lawn to start preparing for the site. - Please see the picture.

    I don't need much road base for this job and most of the place (Bunnings) sell 1 cubic meter at least. So instead of road base, I was thinking to use gravels (white gravel in picture) which was left from previous job.

    Is it a good idea to mix the gravels with sand and cement and then compact it with a compactor? Then lay paving sand and pavers on top. If yes, what kind of sand and cement I can use? Is there a product available in Bunnings?

    Another concern - Though, I will ensure that have slope away from foundation of building but during a heavy rain can water seep into the pavers and may create the problem?
    Please see the picture of site, if the water seeps into the paver then it will not have any drainage other than go into the ground naturally. however if water can flow through the surface of pavers then I think it is not an issue.

  2. #2
    Deactivated User Marc's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2003


    Any nursery or landscape supplier will sell you one ton, 3/4 ton,half ton without hesitation at a cheaper price than Bunnings. Road base compacts much better than any gravel mixture you can come up with because it contains all sizes from dust to 20 mm stones.
    Compacting with cement is good too if you don't mind mixing it dry.
    Go to a proper landscape supplier that will sell you materials lose not in bags if you have a trailer. Some supplier may lend you a trailer.
    For setting the pavers use sharp paving sand, not ordinary river sand.
    Yes, there are other business besides Bunnings that will actually give you useful advice not dumb looks.

  3. #3
    Senior Member YoungBolt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2016


    Definitely avoid Bunno's for anything related to buying sand, rock, soil etc in bulk. They're not setup to sell large quantities of gravel, sand etc, and the 17 yo kid there isn't going to know much.

    Head down to your local garden supplies join and they'll sort you out best.

    Is the area a highly trafficked area? and how is drainage?

    If it's an area that will recieve a lot of foot traffic, there's some big trees nearby and/or has lots of groundflow the maybe consider a mortar base over a sand one. Any big trees or ground movement could easily unsettle pavers and start lifting them up.
    It would take a lot more time to do a mortar base as you'll have to make mortar with sand & cement + make a slurry mix to attach tiles to the mortar mix, but it'll last a lifetime and withstand movement a heap better.

    The key to having a good foundation for a sand base is compaction (is that a word), protection and ensuring water doesn't pool over the area.

    You want to have a good thick 75-100mm base with crushed rock or road base and, if possible, compact with a wacka packa in 3-4 stages (i.e. 25-30mm a time).
    Then you want to compact down good quality sharp sand so they interlock and form a stronger base. Again compact with a wacka packa.
    Make sure the paving has a slope and can drain the water ontop away from the surface, usually into some form of drain channel.
    Then do some haunching all around it to reduce movement from the sides.

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