If you’re thinking of creating a new outdoor space or re-doing your existing backyard, one of the big decisions will be what materials to use for your solid surfaces. Two of the most common choices are concrete and pavers. Both come with their pros and cons, so it’s worth looking into the options a little deeper before you make your decision.
To help you out, we’re going to dive into some of the pros and cons of concrete vs pavers so you’ll be better informed when planning your next home renovation or landscaping project in Melbourne.
Plenty of colours and patterns
Pavers are a great choice when it comes to design flexibility. They are available in a huge range of colours, styles and textures and can be laid in any number of patterns and designs. The look of natural stone can fit in beautifully with your garden and the range of colours means that you’ll always be able to find something that suits the aesthetics of your property.
Easy to repair
If a paver is damaged, they are generally easy to replace, since removing a single paver and replacing it with a new one isn’t a huge job. Concrete, on the other hand, is usually a single slab, which makes repairing concrete more complicated and costly.
Easy to manage stains
All good quality pavers can be sealed to prevent stains and to make cleaning easy. You can also select coloured or patterned stone for your pavers, which can help to hide any stains that may occur.
Pavers are rated to be about four times stronger than a typical concrete slab. However, the durability of the paved surface depends greatly on proper ground preparation prior to installation.
Paving requires more ground preparation and is more labour intensive than pouring a concrete slab. Small paved areas, like garden paths, may be suitable for home DIY jobs.However, large areas or areas that must support significant weight, like driveways, are major projects that usually require professional pavers.
Paving will generally cost more than plain concrete. The cost of the project will greatly depend on the type of pavers you choose and who is carrying out the installation work.
Concrete is generally quicker and easier to install than paving. It requires less ground preparation and is less labour intensive.
Concrete will end up being cheaper than paving because you are paying less for materials and installation.
There are few design options when it comes concrete. Generally, your concrete slab will be plain and will offer nothing close to the range of colours, styles, textures and patterns that pavers provide.
Difficult to repair
If a concrete slab gets seriously damaged, it can be very difficult to repair and may even need to be pulled up and re-poured. And this is a major job.
Prone to cracking
Concrete slabs are greatly affected by the movement of the earth beneath. Cracks will quickly start to appear as the ground beneath shifts. Concrete can also expand and contract with changes in temperature, and this too can lead to cracking. Cracks can be fixed, but the repairs will often be visible.
Prone to stains
Unless your concrete is sealed, concrete slabs can be very prone to staining. Once a slab is stained, it can be difficult to clean. While there are spot cleaning options for concrete slabs, these are band-aid fixes that generally won’t match the colour of the rest of the slab.
If you’re looking for a cheaper and quick-to-install option, then concrete may be the way to go. However, if you care about the design aesthetics and you want a surface that’s easy to repair and maintain, then you need to go for pavers every time.