The two most common materials for building a patio are concrete and pavers. Both have their advantages and disadvantages, so it can be difficult to decide which material type to use for the patio at your home. For the outdoor living spaces we design and construct, pavers are favored, but here are some objective advantages and disadvantages of both pavers and concrete.
Advantages of Pavers
There are several advantages to hiring paver patio installers. Pavers are good at withstanding temperature changes and they rarely crack. They have a long lifespan, and the space in between the stones can assist with water drainage (permeable pavers).
Pavers also can offer many styles and patterns. So your patio is 100% custom which increases the uniqueness factor. Stains on pavers are usually less noticeable than stains on traditional concrete, so you won’t have to spend as much time or energy power washing your patio.
Another key advantage that many may not be aware of is that some paver manufacturers produce freestanding or retaining wall block comprised of a similar style, color scheme and texture of your pavers. When used simultaneously, both of these landscape features will coincide and compliment one another while creating an amazing gathering space.
Disadvantages of Pavers
Pavers cost more up-front than concrete, and they require a more extensive installation process. Depending on the size of the patio, it may take several days to complete the job.
Advantages of Concrete
Concrete is a strong and durable option for your patio. It costs less per square foot than pavers, and the installation is usually less expensive because it’s not as labor intensive.
Stamped concrete also allows for creating impressive and stylish designs that are unique and colorful. Allowing for a distinctive appearance at a price more cost-effective than pavers.
Disadvantages of Concrete
Concrete can crack from ground movement due to frost or extreme temperature changes. Stains may be more noticeable on traditional concrete than on pavers, and they may not go away entirely with power washing.
Concrete takes multiple days to cure and all traffic must stay off until the curing process is complete. With a paver patio, once the polymeric sand in the joints dries thoroughly (24-48 hours), your paver structure is ready for foot traffic.
So Which Is Better?
Pavers and concrete are both good options for your patio. Most homeowners prefer to have something truly unique when a patio is built, so pavers will be the best choice in this example.