By Amanda

LifeBuzz Staff

He Started Out With A Disgusting Patio, But What He Ended Up With Is Amazing.

Next it was time to grade the patio.

"Now that the old base has been removed, I needed to start grading the new base with a 2" slop from the left corner against the townhouse to the edge of the garage. This is how the water will drain. I measured from the top of the stairs to determine what my final patio height out be. I set a metal spike there to use as a reference point. From here was able to determine how much I needed to dig out all around. The steps were near the middle of the patio, so I marked to stake. I then leveled my lines all around and raised the rear stake 1" above the original marker and 1" down to the furthest marker where I wanted my water to drain. Once everything is leveled, you need to use a tamper to compact the base. I just used a normal manual tamper, it killed my hands. I went over the base about 6 times in all different directions until the base was solid as a rock."

After that, it was all about laying the gravel.

"Now that the base is leveled, you need to install the crushed stone. I put down 2" of stone at a time, measuring 2" from the line level all the way around. This insures I maintain my grade as my lines are set up to measure off of. Once the 2" is installed, you need to tamper the crushed stone to compact it. If you put too much gravel down, it will not compact and be uneven. I repeated this until I have 5 inches of stone installed."

Paver stones make up the next portion of the project.

"I used the fence side as my starting point which is 9' long, as I had no other option in a small space. I measured a straight line from the house to the garage and installed my edging. I put the 2 pieces of the 1" pipe down on top of the gravel and dumped my leveling sand on it. This is the level a flat surface that will follow the grade."

Here, you can see the project really coming along.

"Once you have a section of leveling sand installed, remove the pipes and fill in the gaps with some extra sand a smooth it with the towel. You are now ready to install the paver stones. I laid the borer first on the side and top. Paver stones were installed in a random pattern. These stones are VERY forgiving as the gaps at 1/8". I wish I knew this when i started the project. I used the level to make sure everything looks good."

From this angle, it actually kind of looks like a patio.

"Working out from the original starting corner. I repeated the process of leveling sand over and over every 3', laying stones as I went. There is no need to tap the stones down. You simply lay the stones on top of the sand and move on to the next one. Check every few stones to make sure you are square and level."

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