Monday, 8 August 2011

Laying a Patio - 5 Easy Steps

Decided an outdoor dining area is your next project? Laying a patio in your garden will create a smart look that's easy to care for - but you’ll need some muscle to get the job done.

  • spade
  • wheelbarrow
  • wooden pegs
  • string
  • hardcore
  • spirit level
  • levelling board or vibrating plate
  • paving slabs
  • building sand and cement, or ready-made mortar mix
  • lump hammer
  • pointing trowel
1. Mark out the position of your patio using pegs and strings. It’s easiest to adjust the size of the patio so that you don’t have to cut any of the slabs. Dig out to a depth of 15cm unless your patio is against the house in which case you’ll need to go an extra 15cm below the level of the damp-proof course.

2. Lay a 10cm layer of hardcore using wooden pegs as a depth marker. If your patio is against your house it will need to be angled slightly so that water runs away from the building. Use the pegs and a spirit level to guide you in creating this slight slope. Compact the hardcore using a board or a vibrating plate.

3. Lay the slabs down to check you’re happy with the arrangement. Start from the house or a wall or fence if there is one.

4. Make a mortar mix from five parts building sand to one part cement; or use ready-made mortar mix and follow the manufacturer’s instructions. Create a bed of mortar 5 to 8cm deep and lay slabs on it; leaving 1cm gaps in between for grouting. Tap down the slabs with a lump hammer. Check with a spirit level as you go to ensure the slabs are level or maintaining the fall away from the house. Leave the mortar to set for at least 24 hours or a few days.

5. Fill in the spaces between the slabs with a mix of three parts building sand to one part cement (or your ready-made mix) using a pointing trowel. If you get any of the mix on the slabs; remove it. Allow to dry for a few days.


No comments:

Post a Comment