A well laid down stone patio by an expert backyard patio builder is the perfect thing that you can use in combination with your manicured garden to make your house look elegant. Any type of flat squared of limestone or slate will do given that they can withstand your local weather and handle the expected foot traffic.
Here are all the steps included in making a perfect stone patio.
Make A Sketch
Do all the calculations and sketch out the whole stone patio design on a graph paper in order to minimize the waste of materials during the patio building process. You will also find out the quantity of material needed.
While the best method is hiring an expert to do what they are best at, you can also DIY this project if you have some knowledge of laying down patios.
Excavate The Area
After writing down all the needed materials and their needed quantities, now you can mark the total patio area and start excavating.
Keep in mind that you do not have to strictly follow the marked locations, you can go a bit farther than the marked locations and fill them up later on when building the patio. However, be careful with the depth of the patio tough, as this will impact the needed materials if you change the depth measurements.
Prepare The Base
After the excavation is done, you can start laying down a mixture of crushed stone and stone dust in order in batches of 3 inch thick layer, and keep compacting them throughout with the help of a plate compactor. Use water to keep the dust down during this whole process. Finish this process when you reach the desired slope and height.
Spread The Setting Bed
After preparing the base, it’s time to spread the setting bed. You should use 1:12 ratio of cement to stone dust in order to make a good setting bed for bluestone. Keep adding more water until the mixture stiffens.
Bluestone, when placed in the mixture, settles down itself. That is why you should keep the mixture a bit thicker than you actually plan to make it.
Lay The Stones In Place
You can now start placing the stones in place one by one. Remember to keep the smooth side facing up, and get someone’s help if the stones are too heavy. Twist is a bit to settle it firmly into place. Use a rubber mallet to fill out any gaps between the mixture and the stone’s bottom part.
Every stone in your patio must be flush with adjacent slabs. The angle should also be corrected to make sure it follows the natural curve. You can also remove some stones to add more materials if they are not already enough.
Keep doing this until you realize that everything is perfectly leveled. Then you can use levels and place them on adjacent stones to see if they are perfectly leveled.
Cut The Stones Wherever Needed
If some stones are not fitting into place, you can simply mark the cuts with a pencil and use an awl to cut the stone into the desired shape.
If you are not confident about the cuts, you can use the awl with varying cut depths to gradually deliver the final cut. You can also partially score the slab and knock off the rest safely. However, if you are going with a cheaper stone that is prone to cracking, it will need to be cut all the way.
Fill All The Joints
While the edging is not needed to finish a patio, you can use things like cobblestone to make it look nicer.
Once all of this is down and the patio is now firm and prepared to walk on, spread the stone dust all over the patio and sweep it in the joints to fill them thoroughly. This will result in a nicely finished patio with smooth edges and properly filled gaps. However, the material will take some time to settle down.
Finish It Up
To finish up the patio, use a hose to water the gaps filled with stone dust. This will help in compacting the dust and will make the patio even firmer. Get a patio contractor Long Island to build an elegant patio for your home.