Cleaning and Maintaining Your Pavers
Pavers are a low maintenance, long-lasting outdoor decor option. They create beautiful hardscapes, patios, and driveways. Each pavers project offers a large range of customizable features. Pavers vary in size, color, and material. But no matter what material your pavers are, they need regular care.
Most paver materials are very low maintenance. They need infrequent deep cleans. Some pavers are even stain resistant. But being stain resistant is only half the equation to clean pavers. Cleaning and maintaining your pavers is easy and makes a huge difference. A good maintenance routine extends the life of your pavers. It also keeps them looking as vibrant as the day Unique Pavers Design installs them.
Cleaning your pavers involves very little effort. It is usually no more than a quick sweep and rinse. Maintaining the area around your pavers is also important. In this blog, we will look closer at how to clean and maintain your pavers. Some paver materials need different care. We will explore what cleaning needs each paver material has. We will also take a brief look at the benefits of pressure washing.
Why a Broom is A Paver’s Best Friend
Keeping your pavers clean starts with sweeping debris away. You can also choose to use a blower for faster results. Either way, the idea is the same. You must remove all dirt, grass, and other yard debris. It is smart to have a paver cleaning routine to complete after yard work. Cutting the grass or trimming hedges creates a lot of cuttings. These cuttings have a tendency to go everywhere. An important step to yard work is the clean up afterward.
Cuttings that are not cleaned from pavers over time lead to mold and mildew. The risk for mildew growth increases when cuttings become wet. Mildew growth on pavers is not ideal. It causes slippery spots that leave you open to tripping on your hardscape. Pavers are a great choice for patios and pool decks because they are slip-resistant. Keep your pool deck safe from slips. Sweep or blow debris from your space often.
Rinsing your pavers is just as important as sweeping. It is best to use light pressure when rinsing your pavers. Rain is common in Southwest Florida. Rainwater often carries pollutants. These pollutants are small in number. But over time, the pollutants left behind by rainwater causes a filmy build up on your pavers. Unique Pavers Design recommends using a hose with a spray nozzle to get the right pressure. The spray nozzle will help you in removing caked-on debris and natural build-up.
Remember to remove all standing water from pavers. Standing water can breed mildew. By now you know that mildew leads to slippery pavers. And who wants that?
Remove Weeds and Trim Trees
Pavers are a wonderful choice for garden bed edges. Paver edging helps to keep soil, plants, and mulch tidy. But weeds can make a mess of any paver design. Removing weeds from between your pavers is a necessary care step. If too many weeds grow your pavers could crack. Roots that grow beneath your pavers can grow strong enough to break them. Stop weeds in their tracks as soon as you see them. Pull them out or use weed killer.
What kind of trees do you have in your yard? Many of the trees native to Southwest Florida release berries or pollen. Berries, especially, have a tendency to stain. Even though most pavers are stain-resistant, debris from trees can leave big marks.
The best defense against berry and pollen stains is a good offense. Trim your trees often where they hang over your pavers. This will help to cut down on the amount of debris falling down. When berries or pollen does fall, rinse it off quickly. The faster you rinse, the less likely you are to end up with a stain. Natural stone pavers are most at risk for stains.
How to Clean Different Types of Pavers
There are many different paver materials. They are all grouped into three main types. These types are natural stone, cement, and brick. For the most part, the cleaning routine for all pavers is the same. But some pavers may need a little extra elbow grease or soap. Some pavers don’t need any chemicals at all. Here is a quick guide for how to clean specific groups of pavers.
- Natural Stone: Sweep and rinse with light to medium pressure from your hose. Use a light soap, such as blue dawn or green soap, if needed. Avoid using heavy chemicals. Natural stone is prone to corrosion. Stone pavers have a very strong reaction to acid-based products. Even vinegar can corrode natural stone. (TIP: Seal natural stone pavers to protect from corrosion.)
- Cement: Sweep to remove all debris. Rinse with light to medium pressure from your hose. Cement is a more durable paver material. Use light soaps first. For persistent stains, you can add bleach to water. Use this bleach water solution with a hard bristle broom to scrub your cement pavers. For oil stains, use a degreaser instead of bleach.
- Brick: Sweep to remove large debris and dirt. Installation of brick pavers includes putting sand between each brick. Cement and stone pavers usually use mortar or grout between them. Mortar, grout, and sand all help pavers lock together. When you rinse brick pavers, use light pressure from your hose. High pressure will push the sand out from between the pavers. You can use bleach water solution on brick pavers to fight mold and mildew.
Always rinse your pavers clear of soap and chemicals. Use a push broom or leaf blower to remove all standing water.
Should I Pressure Wash My Pavers?
Pressure washing your pavers is a great deep cleaning technique. But it can be expensive. For the most part, pavers don’t usually need to be pressure washed. Sweeping and rinsing is good enough. But sometimes driveways or other high traffic areas need a deeper clean.
Pavers are permeable. This means that water can travel through pavers. Over time, if enough dirty water travels through your pavers, they will start to look dirty. This happens much faster when basic care steps are not taken. Oil and gasoline spills can also permeate your pavers. These situations would need pressure washing.
You do not have to choose pressure washing, though. You can replace individual pavers instead of cleaning them. Call us to remove dirty pavers and install clean ones if you’d rather.
Unique Pavers Designs recommends pressure washing your pavers two times a year. This recommendation assumes you are cleaning your pavers regularly. The less you sweep and rinse your pavers, the more you will have to pressure wash.
Keeping your pavers clean is easy. With Unique Pavers Designs, installation is easy, too. We are here for all your pavers needs. We are a trained team of experts here to help you bring your hardscape dreams to life. We also build fire pits and home front add-ons. Pavers are our specialty. Trust us for your custom paver design needs.