Concrete Slabs v/s Pavers


Whenever one considers paving their driveway or walkway, they have a number of choices but to make the right choice is very critical as it can affect the aesthetic look of your walkway or drive way and even affect the life span of the pavement depending on the usage.

pavers vs concrete slabs

Poured concrete is installed in large blocks and has the advantages of being durable. It can resist pattern stamps, acid stains, or rough. On the other hand, pavers also referred to as paving stones or brick pavers are interlocked tiles of concrete. Some people like the flexibility, colour and appearance of the paved blocks and hence prefer them over poured concrete. Both the options have their own advantages and disadvantages.

Aesthetics
Paved concrete blocks have the advantage when it comes to aesthetic value. With many patterns available, you can choose how your drive way or walk way looks like and customize the same. Different coloured paving blocks can be used in combination to customize the look.

Concrete can be strained or embedded with stones to make it look decorative and attractive. Stamped concrete closely resembles paving stones.

Cost
Poured concrete can cost less initially compared to paved blocks but the long time repairs or maintenance cost of concrete can far exceed the cost of paved blocks and outweigh the initial savings done with concrete slabs.
Poured concrete can cost less initially compared to paved blocks but the long time repairs or maintenance cost of concrete can far exceed the cost of paved blocks and outweigh the initial savings done with concrete slabs.

Installation
Concrete can be poured and is easy to install. The drying of concrete will take time and the installation process may include excavation, preparation of foundation and setting forms for concrete pouring. The ground has to be stabilized or concrete may crack over a period of time. We have seen improperly graded concrete leading to low spots which will hold water and leave stains on the concrete. So we know the importance of concrete grading.
Installation of paving stones requires more labours comparatively. Here there is no curing time involved and the pavement is ready to use upon installation. Excavation, grading, making a proper sub base layer, compaction of the base is very important. Even after the paves are laid, compaction of the paver blocks within the bonding beams and sealing the paver blocks completely is very crucial to get the best result with paver blocks. The problem of grading can be solved later by readjusting or replacing the paving blocks.

Durability
Concrete slabs can crack if the ground beneath it shifts. Its durability is greatly depended on the movement of the earth below. If incorrectly graded, there will be chances of water getting accumulated over the concrete slab. On the other hand, water will not settle on the paver blocks due to the numerous joints in the paver blocks. If the grading is correct, water will not stay on top of the paver blocks and will not create drainage issues. Paving blocks are good because they will allow water to seep to the earth also helping the ground water level. If properly done, paving blocks can last for a life time and can also take more loads compared to concrete slabs. Load distribution is better in the paving blocks as it can disperse pressure or weight evenly.
Maintenance
If concrete gets cracked it will need to be sealed which will spoil the strength of the product and the aesthetic value of the pavement or driveway due to mismatch colouring. In the long run this can be very costly. Stains and pits can occour on concrete slabs by atmospheric effect.
Since pavestones consist of paved blocks interlinked, it is easy to replace a single piece when required. Few pieces of concrete paver blocks can be removed and underground problems can be solved which will be very difficult when concrete is poured. This is less expensive compared to concrete slab maintenance.
Value addition
Concrete can be slippery when wet unless the surface has be grinded when wet. Anti skid agent can also be applied to prevent the slipping.
Paving blocks are non skid and offer good traction comparatively. They also offer instant aesthetic value upon installation