Seven Steps to Plan for a Do-It-Yourself Sustainable Permeable Concrete Paver Patio
Plan for Patio Excavation
Grading for your patio is essential for protecting your house foundation and eliminating those all too frequent low spots where water tends to pool, as well as keeping the patio in top shape.
Several factors decide how deep you will dig your patio foundation.
– Call Miss Utility, 811, or the utility locator in your area a minimum of 3 days before digging, but the earlier the better for other parts of your plan.
- Your patio will need to drain a minimum of 1% slope away from the house to keep water moving in the right direction.
– Winter freeze and thaw is another important factor. Heaving can be eliminated if you check the frost line and dig your patio subgrade below this depth. Your cooperative extension agent will have this information for your area.
Plan for Patio Materials
See the construction detail below for the proper materials you need to insure you install a sustainable permeable paver patio. Depending on the results of your soil test, you may need additional materials for proper drainage. See further details at ToolBaseServices.org
- Estimate how much material you'll need—Permeable interlocking pavers by the square foot dimensions of your patio+ extra for repairs, rock for foundation, and stone dust for setting and finishing patio, construction equipment rentals.
- To calculate stone dust and aggregate needed
Length x Width X Height = Cubic feet of material
NC State University Cooperative Extension has a very useful conversion chart to estimate tons needed from your cubic foot measurements.
- Edging- Edge cobbles will give your patio a clean, designer look and professional grade metal edging will keep all stones in place. Estimate by running foot.
- Have materials delivered or staged on the side your patio will end. You will avoid walking across newly laid pavers.
Permeable Paver Construction Detail
Reprinted with permission, NAHB Research Center, Upper Marlboro, MD
Plan for Patio Building Equipment
You will need the following equipment to build your patio in the most efficient, therefore sustainable, manner:
- Carbide Tipped Awl
- Carpenters Level
- Chalk Line
- Dust Masks
- Ear Protection
- Push Broom
- Rubber Mallet
- Safety Goggles
- Spray Paint
- Square Shovel
- Rental Equipment
- Builders laser level
- Skid loader
- Saw with appropriate blade to cut concrete
Plan for Labor
- Decide how much additional help you will need. This is a big job when you consider possibly moving materials to the site, taking measurements and digging. You will need at least one other helper.
- Determine what other outside contractors you will need. The professional services required might be - Electrical, Natural Gas, Plumbing or Irrigation contractors. Get estimates and check references.
Landscape Construction, Building Costs & Trees
Sustainable Landscape Planning
Natural Resources Conservation Service – Pervious Paving Fact Sheet
Low Impact Development Center
Tool Base Services
NC State Cooperative Extension