Permeable Paving Maintenance
How Permeable Pavers Work
To understand permeable pavement maintenance, one must have a basic idea of how permeable pavers work. The concept is quite simple. Permeable paver systems are ecologically engineered to reduce runoff, standing water, and sediment build up. They are used in driveways, patios, walks, porches, and even parking lots and some roads.
Permeable Paving Systems
The way permeable pavers work is that concrete block pavers rest at the top of the paving system with carefully engineered cracks between each paver to allow for water passage. Below the pavers is the “bedding layer” of a stone chip, with larger stones used below that bedding layer. Rainwater is stored in the larger stones below the bedding layer where water can then leech naturally back into the ground, just as nature intended. The goal that permeable pavers accomplish is one of allowing for natural water seepage as though there was no pavement there. There are multiple types and styles of permeable paving systems, all site-specific and all customizable for enhanced aesthetics and personal preference.
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The Value of Hiring Out Permeable Paving Maintenance
Performing maintenance on permeable paving is not rocket science. A homeowner can do this with a garden hose, shop vac, broom, leaf rake, and some eighty-nine grit limestone sand. However, it is backbreaking work and can take days or even weeks of labor-intensive work depending on the size of the project and how long it has gone without maintenance. Expert permeable paver maintenance and installation companies have special tools and several-man crews that can accomplish these tasks in a matter of hours or a few days at most. Furthermore, such crews can also repair cracked pavers, clean and scrub pavers, replace severely damaged pavers, etc.
Porous Pavement Maintenance; “Recharging” a Permeable Paver System
Porous pavement maintenance, also known as permeable paving maintenance, is not a complicated procedure. It is however time consuming and labor intensive, hence why most homeowners and business owners hire it out. No matter what kind of system of pavers is used, from concrete to grass pavers to open concrete grids, all are relatively simple to maintain for homeowners and business owners alike if you hire professionals. The biggest concern with permeable pavers is that debris, weeds, moss, dirt, and other refuse might over time clog the cracks between each paver in a larger network of pavers, creating a somewhat slowed system. Keep in mind that even with blocked cracks though, the permeable pavement will still serve its function, just more slowly. To get permeable pavement back to one-hundred percent efficiency, this is where permeable paver maintenance comes into play.
Permeable paver maintenance involves cleaning out the sand in the cracks between each paver, removing detritus and debris from the paving system, and reinstalling sand between each paver. The only reason why permeable paving systems need to be maintained is that the crack between each paver gets clogged from repeated water seepage. Even then, this phenomenon takes years of use to occur.
Most permeable paving systems only need to be maintained about once every five to ten years or so, depending on water runoff for that area. Furthermore, how a permeable paving system is installed and what materials are used will also make a big difference. A better job will not need maintenance quite as frequently as a poor job will. Most companies that install permeable pavers also offer maintenance services at affordable pricing to return clients.
If you notice your porous pavers are not working like they used to, or it’s been a very long time since they were maintained, Contact Us and an Expert Team will come in to rapidly bring your pavers back to their original performance. CALL NOW: (615) 266-6360.
Porous Asphalt and Concrete Maintenance; Different from Permeable Paving Maintenance
Maintenance for a porous asphalt driveway or surface is a different process than permeable paving maintenance. Permeable paver driveways are sometimes maintained by homeowners with a strong vacuum, elbow grease, several hours of persistent work, and access to driveway paver sand. Even then though, most homeowners hire out permeable paver maintenance, as the time they save in not having to do the tasks themselves is more than worth the nominal fee needed to hire experts.
Porous Asphalt Maintenance Requires Special Equipment
With porous asphalt maintenance and concrete driveway maintenance, this is always hired out as special equipment is needed. Porous asphalt and pervious concrete need industrial-grade vacuuming equipment. Such paving systems are much harder to clean because they do not have open-to-the-air cracks. Certain methods exist for pulling debris and buildup out of such surfaces, but they require industrial sweepers and vacuums to do so.
Step-by-Step Permeable Paving Maintenance
The step-by-step maintenance program for permeable pavers is quite simple. Homeowners usually hire this out, but they can perform the tasks themselves if they are willing to take the time and rent/own the proper equipment:
- The first step is to power wash the paved area, as this breaks up and loosens weed growth, sediment, and other debris.
- Depending on the tools at hand and how meticulous one wants to be, the next step is to utilize an automated, driveway roto-broom. This broom has bristles that rotate at a rapid pace, grabbing debris (debris that’s already been softened up by power washing) and then pulling that debris out of the cracks in the pavers.
- Next, one needs to utilize a vacuum cleaner, the strongest they can get ahold of, to pull the remainder of the debris up out of the cracks in the individual pavers themselves. A shop vac is usually quite sufficient in performing this task.
- Last but not least, fresh sand needs to be broomed back into the cracks between the pavers. Depending on one’s location, sand used for permeable paving systems could have a limestone base, a sandstone base, or some other composition. Sand for permeable paver systems can be found at the local department store.
Why Permeable Pavers are Easier to Maintain than Pervious Concrete and are the Best Choice
It is easier to perform maintenance on permeable pavers than pervious concrete, and for obvious reasons. Concrete driveway maintenance or asphalt pavement maintenance, even with pervious or porous concrete and asphalt, does not allow for a true cleaning of the system. This is why porous concrete and pervious asphalt systems do not last as long as permeable paver systems do.
Asphalt and concrete paving maintenance is its own animal, separate from permeable paver maintenance. With a concrete or asphalt system, no matter how often it is cleaned, the system will build up with fine-grain sediment over time and eventually will no longer serve its function of permeability. Permeable pavers, on the other hand, can last essentially indefinitely, as long as homeowners hire a crew to maintain the system once every few years. The system will outlast the house, and probably the people living in it too.
Permeable Pavers: the Best Investment in Paving
Permeable pavers offer the best return on investment for any paved surface. They look the best, are the most customizable, and they only require simple, easy-to-do maintenance about once every five years or so. A well-installed permeable paving system will also last countless decades, providing value and looking beautiful in the process! Permeable pavers are not only the best aesthetic choice, but when selecting a system that offers porosity, permeable pavers have a much longer shelf life than permeable asphalts or concretes do. Furthermore, what maintenance is needed for permeable pavers can be easily hired out and performed by the experts in about one to three days, depending on the size of the project at hand. Truly, permeable paver systems are the best choice for any paving project.
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Learning More About Permeable Pavers – The FAQ
Excited? Ready to learn more about permeable pavers? As our readers can see from this article, permeable paver maintenance is pretty minimal, especially when it means that one is receiving a top-notch permeable system from the best hardscaping contractors in Nashville.
Now that you know all about how to maintain your permeable paver driveway, parking lot, or walking path, let’s talk about some of the most common questions we get asked about pavers and their function. By the way, you can always call our offices at (615) 266-6360 and ask us anything. But in the meantime, here are the “permeable questions” we hear the most:
- How long do permeable pavers last?
- Indefinitely. We have yet to see one of our paved systems need replacement, and from our knowledge of how permeable pavers work, it is our estimate that these systems last 50-80 years or more.
- Are permeable pavers customizable?
- Absolutely. Feel free to talk to our designers about any ideas you might have, and be as creative as you like! We love unique, custom projects.
- How do permeable pavers compare in cost to other methods of paving?
- Permeable-paved surfaces come in at about 1.5-2X the cost of traditional asphalt and concrete, depending on the size and complexity of the project. However, permeable pavers offer more than double the lifespan of asphalt and concrete, plus the added benefit of stormwater reduction through filtration.
- Where can I use permeable pavers?
- Just about anywhere. In fact, permeable pavers are even more versatile than asphalt and concrete are. You can use permeable pavers on porches, decks, driveways, patios, pergolas, walking paths, sidewalks, entryways, parking lots, garden paths, outdoor eating areas, etc.
- Do you offer ongoing maintenance for permeable pavers?
- We do, and at a discounted rate too. We always encourage our clients to let us take care of any needed maintenance on the permeable systems we install.
- Are your products and services warrantied?
- Yes. Our paving design and installation team offers a warranty on all of our products and services. Contact our office at (615) 266-6360 to learn more.