Colordrives has extensive expertise in all kinds of block paving.
We were in fact one of the first companies to start laying residential block paving in Solihull when it first became available many years ago.
We work in all aspects of block paving including premium clay paver’s and cobbles from many different suppliers
All our block paved driveways are installed to the highest standards adhering to the relevant BS specifications using specialist equipment such as clay block splitters giving a premium quality finish.
A block paved driveway can transform the look of your property and comes with many benefits:
- Unlimited design options
- Hard wearing with longevity that often out lasts tarmac
- Easily repairable if damaged
- Totally resistant to wear from power steering
- Oil and other fluid stains are easily repaired.
- Can be lifted and relaid in case of problems with underground services.
- Can be cleaned many years on and restored to its former glory
How We Do Block Paved Driveways
Step 1 – Block Paving Excavation
Once we have agreed the shape of your new driveway, the first job is to excavate down to formation level the existing driveway and any areas that the proposed driveway is to be extended into.
All our driveways are excavated to a depth of 230mm, this is to allow for the 3 layers that make up a residential block paved driveway.
Layer 1 – MOT type 1 specification crushed concrete hardcore to a depth of 150mm.
Layer 2 – Washed sharp sand to a depth of 30mm
Layer 3 – Selected 50mm block paver.
It is essential that your new driveway is constructed in this way to ensure that it does not subside, a badly constructed sub-base will result in a poor quality block paved drive that will not last.
All excavations from your site will be carted away by a licensed grab-away company, some of the excavations such as soil, tarmac and concrete will likely be recycled and any materials that cannot be recycled will be taken to a licensed tip.
Some driveways will require the use of a membrane at the formation level, this will sit between the sub-grade and the hardcore, this will only be required if the sub-grade is particularly bad ground and is designed to prevent migration of the hardcore into the sub-grade.
Once the hardcore has been installed it is levelled and then fully compacted using a heavy duty vibrating roller.
Step 2 – Block Paving Edging Courses
All block paved driveways need to be retained by a solid edging course, some firms only lay the retaining blocks on the screeded sand and then haunch the back of them with concrete this is a cardinal sin of installing a block paved driveway for a number of reasons.
- Does not comply with BS7533 Part 3 Clause 4:2:1 which specifies that edging courses must be “sufficiently robust to withstand override by anticipated traffic and to prevent loss of the laying course material.”
- Additionally fails to comply with the above mentioned standard in that edge restraints should “present a vertical face down to the level of the underside of the laying course.”
- Concrete haunch is to thin and weak and will ultimately crack and break away from the back of the edging course allowing the paver’s to spread and the sand screed to migrate from under the paver’s.
Not laying the retaining edging course on a concrete bed is the single biggest reason for the failure of block paved driveways and it is a false economy to spend less money to have a driveway that will not last as long as it should. This is often the reason for differences in quoted prices due to the fact that substantial time is saved not installing the retaining edges properly.
Many different forms of edging can be used and will be dependant upon the type of block paver you select for you new driveway.
Once the edging course material has been selected they will be installed on a 100mm concrete bed and haunched to the back to prevent lateral movement.
In some cases where an edging kerb is raised we may gap each edging brick or kerb and mortar joint the gaps.
At this stage any other additional parts of the job will also be installed such as drainage, steps and recess manhole covers.
Step 3 – Block Paving Sub-base Preparation
Once the edging courses have been installed additional hardcore will be spread, levelled and compacted to bring the base up to the correct levels for the installation of the sand screed that the paver’s will be laid on.
This will be laid to a depth of approx 30mm and fully compacted with a wacker plate.
The sand will then be “screeded” to the relevant falls and levels in preparation for the paver’s to be laid.
Step 3 – Block Paving Laying The Pavers
Once the sand is screeded the block paver’s will be laid in your selected pattern, the pattern will depend on the type of paver you have selected but for standard 200mm * 100mm paver’s on a driveway herringbone 45 or 90 is recommended because it is an interlocked pattern.
Some patterns are not really suitable for installation on a driveway but are fine for pathways and patios we will advise you prior to starting the job on the best pattern to lay.
Step 4 – Block Paving Cutting In
Once all the paver’s have been laid then the edges will be “cut in”, this involves cutting the paver’s using an mechanical block splitter or steel saw.
We comply with BS 7533 Part 3 when cutting in block paver’s which states that cut blocks should be at least one-quarter full-sizi, this is to ensure that small cuts otherwise know as “darts” and “slips” are not installed which are likely to crack over time. In herringbone patterns this is achieved by a process called “inboard cutting” which involves cutting a half block to the back of the dart or slip to make the cut bigger, this can result in breaking the pattern however this is preferable to a lot of small cuts both aesthetically and practically.
Step 4 – Block Paving Sanding In
When all the cutting in is done the final job is to apply kiln dried sand to the entire paved area and compact it into the joints using a wacker plate. Once the driveway has been compacted the renaming sand is swept off.
Dependant on the weather conditions at the time especially if the paver’s are wet or damp then the kiln dried sand may not properly fill the joints, they may need topping up at a later date when the blocks have dried out, we will advise on this at the time.