The pavers in your patio or walkway are actually part of an interlocking system. This system includes a base, bedding sand, concrete pavers with sand in the joints, and an edge restraint to contain the pavers at the perimeter. Each of these components must be maintained properly to preserve that interlock which prevents the pavers from moving.
Edging is a very important part of this system; it keeps the pavers from spreading caused by the force of foot traffic, cars and ground movement. It should be installed along the entire perimeter of all paved surfaces unless the edges come in contact with another solid surface such as a vertical wall, concrete curb or driveway edge.
Damaged or missing edging is the cause of many problems in paver hardscapes. When the edging fails, the pavers move, the joints open up, and the interlock between the pavers is lost. Without that interlock, the pavers begin to move. Over time the pavers will continue to spread, lift, sink and shift. This creates places for weeds and moss to grow and can also create tripping hazards. Often the damage starts out in a small area and can be easily repaired. If the problem is not addressed the damage will quickly spread to a larger area and the repairs become more costly.
Improper installation is often the cause of edging failure. We often find that the stone base material did not extend out at least 6” from the edge of the pavers, or that the outside edge was not kept backfilled. Frequently we find that not enough spikes were installed originally. We also see edging that is just nailed into dirt or sand; this does not remain stable. Problems with edging are much more prevalent in places with harsh winters because the freeze-thaw cycles will have a tendency to lift the edging.
Edging can be made of plastic, aluminum, steel, wood or concrete. We believe that plastic is the best material since it is easier to install and will not rust or rot. It’s also flexible enough to allow a secure fit along curved edges. Concrete edging blocks are another alternative that are durable and attractive, but may be more costly to install.
To repair edging, we first uncover and remove the affected sections. In some cases the old edging can be resused; but in most cases it must be replaced. We then dig out an area deep and wide enough to install the edging properly. The edging must be set below the surface of the paver and secured with plenty of spikes. Finally, the area is backfilled with the proper material.
Edging is critical to the paver system… if not maintained it can ruin a beautiful walk, patio or drive. Click here to find out how The Paver Savers can repair your edging as part of our comprehensive restoration process.