Patio Design Sequence

When one designs a patio there is a sequence that you can go through to save a lot of time and mistakes.

What Do You Want To Achieve With a New Patio Area?

The first thing to consider is the use of the area. Is it mainly for BBQ? a place for the kids? a place to relax? a vegetable garden? a place to entertain? or a combination of the above? Do you want a pool? Do you want a pond, fountain or waterfall?

It's essential that you work this part out even if you're going to hire a designer. If you are in the Greater Houston area and would like some professional help, we will be more than happy to serve you.

Design and Size

Decide how much of the space you will need to devote to the activity that you want. This space will come off the house. Make a sketch of the back of your house and outline the area you would like to have the patio area. Now add a BBQ, pool or pond to your sketch. Pools are best placed further form the house while ponds are best placed close to the patio and in an area that can be viewed from the house.

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Now work those elements back and forth until you have a good relationship and have the design the way you would like it.

Materials

There are many different types of material that you can choose for your patio. The table below will give some ideas.

 

Concrete

Brick

Flagstone

Stamped concrete

Paving stones

Strength

2000 psi

Moderate

1,000 to 10,000

Moderate

Not rated

2,000 psi

Moderate

8,000 psi

High

Flexibility

Not flexible

Will crack

Not flexible

Will crack

Flexible

Will crack

Not flexible

Will crack

Flexible

NO cracks

Maintenance

Moderate

Oil stains

Difficult to maintain

Moderate

Oil and other stains hard to remove

Moderate

Oil and other stains hard to remove

Moderate

Oil and other stains hard to remove

Low

Most stains are hidden

Repairable

Can not repair without noticing scar marks

Prone to chipping

Prone to chipping

Repairs costly and marks visible

Pavers easy to replace

Colors and Patterns

Many colors to chose from

Brick colors range from red to orange and flash of black

Many types of Flagstone

Many stamped patterns

A wide assortment of colors, shapes and sizes

Cost

$4.50 to $7.50

$15 to $18

$15 to $18

$7.50 to $12

$9 to $15

Concrete

Patios built out of concrete should be constructed out of 4 inches of 2000 psi concrete with inch rebar placed every 24 inches on center going in both directions. The Soil under should be well compacted.

Brick

Traditional brick patios should be built over a 4-inch concrete slab. The bricks are now set in a mortar bed and leveled one at a time. Then all the spaces between the bricks are filled with a grout. This is can be rather expensive because one is building two surfaces.

Interlocking brick patios are far more economical because they are set in sand instead of in mortar over concrete.

Flagstone

Flagstone is a generic term for thin flat rock that is used for paving flat surfaces. Flagstone is named from the location of the quarry it comes from. Arizona red is a reddish sand stone; Pennsylvania blue is a grey blue. The cost of the stone is proportional to the shipping distance.

It is best to pour a concrete slab and set the stone in mortar on the slab. However, in the interest of economy the stones can be set directly over the soil. They will move and shift over time and will have to be readjusted from time to time.

Stamped Concrete

A stamped concrete patio should first be prepared with 4 inches of concrete with inch rebar going both ways.

The "stamping' happens after the concrete has been poured and just before it sets up. There are several methods of stamping. The most common is to use a rubber mat like material with the desired pattern molded into one side. The molded pattern is placed down on the concrete leaving the desired pattern in the concrete. The procedure is repeated over the area to be stamped. Control joints are placed in the concrete in the effort to have the cracks follow the joints. This does not always happen and the cracks can appear anywhere in the newly finished concrete.

Concrete is usually colored before it is poured. There are standard colors that can be added to the concrete at the ready mix company as it goes into the truck. The colors are not 100% predictable and may vary slightly from the color chosen.

Paving Stones

The price of paving stones is more affordable today than before. The techniques have improved and the skill in laying the stones has been expanded. When one compares similar aspects of a stamped concrete patio done correctly costs are usually less. However when the advantages of each are compared the paving stones far outweigh the concrete.

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Concrete will crack and paving stones will not; concrete will fad and the exact colors can not always be predicted, whereas paving stones colors can be seen and chosen before they go in; concrete has no warranty against; cracking paving stones have a lifetime warranty; concrete cannot be repaired without noticing the repair marks; paving stones can be replaced without seeing any evidence of the repair; concrete is an artificial copy where each paving stones is a unique unit.

We hope this overview of Patio Deck Design and the different types of materials that can be used is helpful.

We are experts in this and we guarantee 100% customer satisfaction.

We serve the Greater Houston Area..

Feel free to call for a free estimate at 281-340-9206 or fill out our Online Request Form and receive an on-site free estimate.

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