Stone pavers are an excellent way to add a touch of class to your indoor and outdoor areas. However, with this level of quality also comes the potential for aging and deterioration over time. Those who invest in stone pavers ultimately receive the best results when they treat the surface with care.
So, how can you keep pavers remain clean and pristine? Read on for a detailed breakdown. While the following is most relevant for current paver owners, this information also applies to anyone considering stone paver installation in the future.
Stone pavers are commonly installed across driveways and outdoor entertainment areas. As a result, they are naturally susceptible to overgrowth and weeds. These weeds will likely sprout between the grouting and edges of the pavers. Areas that don’t receive a lot of foot traffic are at particular risk.
Performing regular weeding is the best way to address this issue. Remember that while most weeds are easily removed by hand or with gardening tools, some may be rooted in crucial points underneath the stone. In these instances, we recommend seeking out ecofriendly weed killer products that proactively attack stubborn overgrowth.
It can be incredibly easy to neglect your stone pavers and forget to clean the surface. Luckily, this process is not only quite simple, but also achieves excellent results. Once you’ve cleared any weeds from the surface area, apply a combination of soap with warm water, and then proceed to scrub the stone pavers with a stiff brush.
If you plan on using a garden hose, we should first offer a word of caution. Unfortunately, the constant pressure from repeated hose use may slowly damage and wear down the paver’s joints. As with any surface across your home, your stone pavers should always be handled with care.
Keep in mind that the pressure required also changes depending on the exact type of stone paver you own. Some materials, such as limestone and sandstone, are more naturally porous and textured than others.
Seal the Surface Area-
Typically, stone pavers are sealed during the installation phase. This is standard practice for stone installers and contractors. However, even if your pavers were sealed at the point of installation, they can still deteriorate over time. When left to their own devices, they begin to lose their signature finish and feel.
Of course, achieving the best result must involve the use of the correct sealants. Ensure that you are utilising products that are purpose-designed for stone pavers - not those designed for tiles or other surface types.
Sealing your stone pavers serves a vital purpose. Not only will it revitalise the surface area, but it also provides ongoing protection for the future. The application of sealants helps to fight off accidental spills, stains and weather damage. Further, the resealing process is commonplace for all forms of natural stone.
Arrange Professional Cleaning-
Whether you lack the necessary time, or the task is simply much, contacting professional paver cleaners is always a viable alternative. Professional stone cleaners apply targeted techniques and products that offer more a quick fix.
A professional cleaning service is excellent for everything from general maintenance to end-of-lease arrangements, and even preparing a property for sale. Services of this kind are quite common for commercial, industrial, and municipal settings with large stone paver areas.
Invest in a Pressure Washer-
The good news is that not all stone pavers require professional cleaning. Across residential and small business settings, much of your stone paver maintenance can be performed with a personal pressure washer. Pressure washers are manufacturered by various well known brands and are now available in most hardware stores across Australia.
Whether they run on electricity or petrol, these handheld pressure washers provide excellent results across outdoor stone paver surfaces. Each device achieves results far superior to that of your regular garden hose. In addition, you can also save a significant amount of money in maintenance costs over the long term.
Additional Maintenance Tips-
Now that we’ve covered the major tips and techniques, it is essential to note a few more important points.
Perform Preventative Measures-
As with any form of maintenance, preparation and early intervention is always the best approach. While regular sweeping or cleaning may seem like a pain at first, the results are well worth the extra effort. Prevention may also involve investing in your very own pressure washer.
Sweep Down the Surface-
Sweeping your stone pavers is a simple yet highly effective form of maintenance. Beyond the obvious ability to keep everything neat and tidy, sweeping helps to prevent a build-up of moss, algae, dust and weeds.
Don’t Be Too Rough-
While stone surfaces are naturally durable and robust, you must still treat them with care. Unfortunately, materials such as granite are not self-cleaning and require a little TLC from the owner. This is particularly relevant for high traffic areas such as driveways and outdoor entertainment areas.
Try Spot Cleaning-
If a warm water/soap solution fails to remove stubborn dirt and stains, spot cleaning may be applied. This will typically involve the use of mild detergents, bleach or a small amount of hydrochloric acid. Note that before any acid is applied, the surface area should already be wiped down with warm water.
Replace Individual Slabs-
In some instances, even the use of spot cleaning will fail to revitalise damaged or worn-down surface areas. Luckily, replacing an individual slab or slabs is a viable alternative. For this strategy, simply reach out to a local stone supplier and check if they have the relevant pavers in stock.
Buy Purpose-Made Paver Products-
When the situation calls for more than soap and warm water, it is vital that only apply products designed for stone paver application. Applying the wrong chemical compounds could result in permanent staining or discolouration.
Don’t Neglect Your Pavers-
Although stone pavers are highly durable, this does not mean they are bulletproof. Remember, Australia’s harsh climate can wear down even the most robust granite and bluestone surfaces. Staying active and vigilant, therefore, is ultimately the best way to keep your stone pavers clean for many years to come.