How to Lay Patio Blocks for a Walkway

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Build a walkway in your yard from patio blocks also known as patio pavers. They come in various sizes, colors and textures to match the décor and style of your landscape and house. Patio blocks are also durable, resistant to moisture, heat and freezing temperatures and are easy to install. You can construct a walkway with patio blocks without the cost of hiring a contractor. The most effort you’ll apply is excavating the walkway area.

Things You'll Need

  • Stakes
  • Hammer or mallet
  • String
  • Shovel
  • Vegetation killer
  • Garden sprayer
  • Plate compactor
  • Hand tamper
  • Hoe
  • ¾-inch crushed stone
  • Level
  • Garden hose and water
  • Precast concrete curbs
  • Electrical conduit
  • Wire cutters
  • Masonry sand
  • Trowel
  • 2-by-4
  • Measuring tape
  • Crayon
  • Chisel or paver splitter
  • Broom
  • Hammer stakes along the walkway area, adding 1 foot in each direction. Tie string between the stakes to mark your walkway.

  • Dig out all grass, vegetation, tree roots and rocks from the walkway. Excavate down to 9 inches, sloping the walkway away from your house with the edge of the shovel or a hoe to allow for water to drain away from your foundation. Spray the walkway with vegetation killer, using a garden sprayer. Compact the dirt with the power plate compactor or a hand tamper.

  • Shovel and cover the walkway with crushed stone to a minimum depth of 5 inches, but leaving 3 inches from the grade. Tamp the stone to compress it with the plate compactor. Water it with the garden hose. When you can walk on the stone and see no footprints, add another layer of stone, compact it again and water it until you reach 3 inches below the grade. Use the shovel edge or hoe to slope the stone away from your house foundation for drainage at 1 inch for every 8 feet of walkway. Check the slope degree with the level to be accurate.

  • Lay precast concrete curbs along the perimeter walkway. Place strips of galvanized electrical conduit you’ve precut with wire cutters along the length and width of the walkway, and inside the curbs, setting them 6 feet apart. Shovel masonry sand around them 1 inch on top to hold it in place. Run a two-by-four board over the sand to smooth it flat. Take out the conduit and pack sand in the holes left behind. Smooth a trowel over the sand to level it out.

  • Set the patio blocks in the sand in the pattern you desire; laying them edge-to-edge with only 1/8 inch between each block. Use a paver splitter or a hammer and chisel to cut the blocks as needed to fit inside the walkway. Use a tape measure to measure where to place the cut and mark it with a crayon for a guide. Wear eye protection when cutting the blocks.

  • Shovel another layer of sand over the pavers and tamp it with the hand tamper. Water the area with a garden hose and repeat this process until the sand has filled and is compacted around and between each block. Sweep away excess sand with a broom.

Tips & Warnings

  • Contact your utility companies and ask them to flag any underground utilities in the area where you want to excavate for your walkway so you can avoid digging into them.
  • Wear eye protection when cutting the blocks.

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References

  • Photo Credit Jupiterimages/Polka Dot/Getty Images
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