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Driveway Pavers Cost Guide

Driveway pavers add a nice look to any home. Made from concrete, stone or other materials, the pavers come in a wide range of colors, shapes, styles and designs. Many homeowners use these pavers in place of poured concrete in their driveways, and others use the pavers to create a fun patio area or a walkway leading to a pool or sidewalk. Most homeowners find that the cost of the job is relatively inexpensive when compared to other similar jobs.

Cost of Driveway Pavers

  • Brick pavers: $5 per square foot up to $10 per square foot
  • Natural stone pavers: $6 per square foot to $50 per square foot
  • Concrete pavers: $3 per square foot up to $10 per square foot

Creating A Paved Driveway

Creating a driveway from pavers is a relatively simple but tedious task. The process begins with an inspection of the property, and most homeowners need to level out the ground before beginning the job. A contractor will then lay out a base material of gravel or stone. This material gives the pavers something to stick to and keeps the pavers from slipping. After leaving out the base material, the contractor will layer the pavers on top and use a fill material over the pavers. The fill material slips over the pavers and drops between each piece, holding the pavers firmly in place. The last step involves tampering down the pavers, and some contractors will also add a layer of sealant to protect the pavers from environmental dangers.

Types of Pavers

Concrete is one of the more common types of pavers. Made from wet concrete poured into a shell, manufacturers can add colors to the wet materials or use different shaped molds to create pavers in different sizes and shapes. Brick pavers are another option. Though many people assume that brick only comes in a few darker shades of red, brick actually comes in a number of different colors. These shades range from off white and pale yellow to darker shades of red and brown. Some homeowners choose natural stone pavers, which are usually the most expensive option. Manufacturers purchase large blocks of stone or mine stone, and the companies break those stones down into individual pavers.

Uses of Pavers

Using pavers to create a driveway is one of the more common uses for this material, but homeowners can also use the materials in other ways. When properly installed on a lawn, the pavers can create a functional patio or porch space for entertaining and relaxing. Contractors typically cut grooves into the grass, lay down a base material and pack the paver on top. Applying water to the ground before tampering the pavers ensures that the concrete, brick or stone won't slip or otherwise move. Some homeowners also use the pavers around outdoor cooking areas and swimming pools to create a place for entertaining.

Advantages of Pavers

With proper installation, a driveway made from pavers can last for 20 years or longer. Homeowners must look closely at all the different types of pavers and the advantages and disadvantages of each material. Concrete pavers are often less expensive than other materials and are stronger than a poured concrete driveway. A poured concrete driveway will develop cracks and chips over time, while individual pavers generally hold up better. Shoppers will also find that concrete pavers come in a wide range of designs that can mimic natural stone or brick.

Brick pavers require less maintenance than other forms of pavers, and brick usually lasts longer than the other materials. Brick is also a good choice for those living in areas with a freeze-and-thaw cycle during the winter months because brick will naturally expand and contract during the cooler months. Natural stone pavers have some advantages as well, including durability and a range of color options.

Disadvantages of Pavers

Looking at the disadvantages of any building material is an important step in the construction process. While inexpensive and durable, concrete pavers have a few potential problems. Though strong, these pavers can break or chip after several years of constant use and require replacement. Finding replacement brick that matches the original is sometimes difficult. Some homeowners will find that the material looks cheap. Natural stone isn't nearly as durable as brick or concrete, and natural stone can cost up to $50 per square foot depending on the type of stone picked. 

Labor Costs

When looking at the cost of a paver driveway, homeowners must factor in any labor costs. For an average 1,000 square foot driveway, the labor can cost $2,500 or more, which adds an additional $2.50 per square foot to the overall cost of the driveway. This assumes that the contractor completes the job within five days with a crew of up to five men. If the homeowners hire a better crew or the job requires more workers, the labor costs can easily climb above $3,000.

What Can Impact the Overall Cost?

While the cost of the pavers and labor gives homeowners an idea about the overall price of the job, they also need to think about other factors that impact the cost. Homeowners may need to pay for the fill material, the base material and the sealant. Those products alone can add several thousand dollars to the cost of the driveway.

It is important that homeowners get an accurate estimate before work begins. The contractor should come directly to the house. If a homeowner requests an estimate for a 1,000 square foot driveway without the contractor seeing the property, the contractor has no way of knowing what the finished driveway will look like or where that driveway will sit. The slope of the yard, the grading of the driveway and the location of drains in the yard can all increase the length of the job. Contractors will also charge more for curved or circular driveways and driveways with a unique design. Showing the contractor the home first will result in a better and more accurate estimate.

Last updated on Jan 26, 2016

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