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Laying garden patio


laying garden patio

'How do I lay garden patio's properly?' We show you step by step how to lay patio paving properly, if you want to build your new garden patio yourself. We give you valuable landscaping advice, so get your spirit level, spade, trowel and cement mixer out and start laying garden patio!

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step 1 - clear the patio site and markout

Using a scaled plan, mark out it’s position using pegs and a line, clearing the site of all vegetation.

step 2 - set your patio 6" below damp proof course

step 2 - set your patio 6" below damp proof course

Dig out your soil to a depth of about 150 mm or 6" below the finished patio level, ensuring the soil is compacted.


step 3 - excavate and compact a hardcore base

step 3 - excavate and compact a hardcore base

Spread an good layer of at least 100 mm or 4" thick of Hardcore over the excavated area, leaving room for the thickness of the slabs and approx 30-50 mm or 2" of Mortar.

Compact the layer of Hardcore thoroughly ideally with a plate compactor.

step 4 - start to lay your patio paving slabs

step 4 - start to lay your patio paving slabs

Using your house wall, fence or pegs and line as a reference, start to lay your slabs, prefferably using a solid mortar base.

Tap each slab down using a rubber mallet and continuously check they're level. You can use wooden spacers to ensure equal gaps between slabs.

step 5 - cutting your patio paving slabs

step 5 - cutting your patio paving slabs

Continue until all the slabs in your patio are laid, being careful to check you follow your slope level as you go.

If any of your slabs have to be cut, use an angle grinder, or a chisel and hammer to cut your slabs effectively.

step 6 - paving slab joints and a dry mortar mix

step 6 - paving slab joints and a dry mortar mix

When the patio is finished, wait a few of days for the mortar to set. Fill joints with a dry mortar mix, and gently wet using a watering can with a fine rose.

Again you should leave for a few days more before breaking out that Barbeque and enjoying the fun!

DIY tips for your patio project

DIY tips for your patio project

A good mortar mix is 3-4 parts building sand to 1 part cement.
Set two lines at the correct fall to ensure water can run off the patio.
Mortar should not be too wet, but just firm enough to support slabs.
Mix packs of slabs to ensure a random colour mix.         

Your patio must be at least 150 mm or 6" below your house DPC (Damp Proof Course) if it’s next to the house, and remember to slope the patio away from walls or fence - a slope of just 25 mm over 1.5 m (or 1:60) should be sufficient.

Open this How To guide as a PDF and print...

Click to open this PDF document Click the Icon to open this How To guide as a PDF document and print out...


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