When creating a new driveway or renovating an existing one, proper block laying is critical. Improperly laid blocks can lead to issues like sinking paving stones that break, as well as surface water pooling on top of the pavement.

To prevent these problems, you must begin by creating a sturdy foundation for your block paving. The sub-base layer should be at least 100mm thick and compacted using a compacting plate so that the weight of the pavement is supported.


Block paving requires a subbase, usually composed of crushed aggregate, to provide strength and load-bearing capacity. This layer is an essential component for most types of paver, though not necessarily all.

When installing block paving, the most critical thing to remember is to get the sub-base correct. Doing this will guarantee your paving remains strong and healthy for years to come.

A quality sub-base will improve drainage and prevent settlement and channelisation – two issues often seen with cheaper installations of block paving that do not use a sub-base layer. Without one, thick dips and ‘ruts’ in the surface obstruct water and air circulation.

When laying the sub-base, it is essential to use the correct mix of materials and compact it thoroughly. Doing this will guarantee even distribution throughout your paving, as well as significantly extend its lifespan.

Once the sub-base has been spread and raked evenly, it should be compacted using a vibrating plate compactor. Six or seven passes should be sufficient to firm up the base.

Once the sub-base has been packed, it is essential to add a layer of damp sharp sand. This should be moist enough for you to form into a ball with your hands.

This will fill in any gaps between your subbase and final paving line. Be sure to contour it according to any slopes or angles present.

Next, spread a layer of coarse sand over the sub-base until it reaches 25-40 mm deep and screed it smooth.

Once the sand and sub-base have been laid, it is now time to install edge restraints for your kerb. These should be secured to the bottom of the edging blocks using a mortar mix composed of three parts sharp sand to one part cement.

Maintain the kerbs as level as possible and, where needed, excavate short runs with string lines and staves to accommodate any elevation changes.

To create a herringbone pattern, the block should be set on the sub-base at either 45 or 90 degrees to the perpendicular. This will guarantee that the strongest interlocking bond is created.


Screeding the surface of block paving is an integral part of the final look. This task can be carried out manually or with a machine-mounted screeding bar.

The initial stage of screeding is to prepare the ground by levelling it and marking out any designs. Subsequently, lay down your blocks for paving on top of this layer and fill in any sand gaps with a laying tool before compacting and pressing together with your trowel.

For smaller tasks, hand-held tools may suffice; however, for larger ones, machine-mounted systems are usually preferred. Laying tools like those pictured on the left enable one operator to quickly prepare an area in a short amount of time.

Once the sub-base has been prepared, a layer of sharp sand should be added and compacted with a wacker plate. This creates an even surface for blocks to sit on that’s usually 25-40mm deep. Make sure the sand is damp enough to form balls when squeezed in your fist; additionally, drainage drop should also be included at this stage.

Once the sand has been added to the bed, a second layer of sand should be poured on top to form an even base for laying blocks. This layer should then be compacted and compressed together using a wacker plate in order to incorporate any drainage drops and ensure it is even throughout.

Sand like this is often employed in commercial driveways, yards and industrial sites due to its superior hardness and strength compared to residential driveway sand.

Screeding bars are a standard paving accessory and can be hinged or joined to accommodate raised profiles (roof-section or cambered), as well as dished profiles. They’re often employed by gangs that do a lot of cambered or dished work, but they may also be utilized with standard straight screeding tools.

Depending on the application, the mix ratio for a screed can vary. A 1:4 mix design is common but you can opt for higher or lower numbers; however, be aware that an uneven screed won’t last as long and could potentially break apart during installation.

Laying the Blocks

When installing block paving, it’s essential to do it correctly. Doing so will determine its longevity and ease of upkeep in the future. Therefore, plan your project thoroughly and have everything ready beforehand.

Planning how your paving will flow and fit with the rest of your garden and house can help you avoid many issues in the future.

Before you lay your block paving, ensure you create a secure base for it to sit on. Doing this will prevent the concrete from shifting or becoming uneven over time. Furthermore, this protects your paving from weather damage and stops weeds from growing between each block.

Create a foundation by spreading gravel or sand to an depth of approximately 4 inches and leveling it with a trowel. Next, add another layer of building sand on top and compact it using a compactor tool.

After several passes, your sub-base should have been compacted to the desired level. It is wise to pass over this area between six and seven times with a compacting tool so that everything is even.

Once the sand and gravel has been compacted, using two screed rails (or even timber works) can help level off any dips or hollows in the base. Doing this makes re-laying block paving much simpler, guaranteeing all surfaces are as flat as possible.

Next, lay a sub-base of 40mm compacted sharp sand. This will act as support for your blocks once they’re set in place; however, avoid using building sand as it won’t drain properly and could cause your paving to settle prematurely.

When installing block paving, it is essential to check its alignment and fill any gaps between the stones. To do this, spread kiln-dried sand over the surface of the pavement and gently sweep it into any joints between each stone.


The finishing stage of block paving is essential as it guarantees your new driveway or patio will stay in excellent condition. After cleaning and sealing, it can prevent weed regrowth and frost damage which could cause sand erosion. Furthermore, it protects the sub-base beneath it by keeping it from washing out and safeguarding its underlying structure.

First and foremost, you need to clear the area you plan to lay paving on by clearing away any vegetation and topsoil from its surface. Do this at a depth of 200mm-250mm across the paver area.

Once cleared, level the paving area. Make sure the pavers are even on all sides, especially if you are laying it on a slope. Use a screeding lat to level the sub-base layer and top this off with 5cm of damp sharp sand; this will raise the area so you can lay blocks evenly and ensure perfect levelling when installing paving installers adelaide blocks.

Next, lay the paving blocks over top of the sand layer, beginning in one corner and working your way towards the other. We recommend using a herringbone pattern for best interlocking between each block for extra security.

Once all the blocks have been laid in your desired pattern, it is necessary to sweep sand over all surfaces. Doing this prevents any debris from getting caught between joints and distorting the laid pattern.

After your paving is swept clean, use a vibrating plate compactor (wacker plate) to compact it down. Repeat this process twice or three times over the area with 4 to 6 passes over each section of paving at 90-degree angles from previous pass.

Once installed, fill any gaps between paving blocks with kiln dried jointing sand. This will secure them together and ensure they stay put even if foot traffic increases in the space.

Business Address: 28 Adelaide tce st marys 5042
Website: https://www.landscapingadelaide.net.au/
Phone: 0430 042 058

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