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WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF BLOCK PAVING?

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24th June 2024

Whether you're looking to get a new driveway installed or make changes to your current driveway, the options available today may seem almost endless. So, what driveway surface is the best option?

In this article, we will look at block paving and its widespread use as a driveway, citing its timeless charm, exceptional durability, and endless design possibilities. 

What is block paving?

Block paving, also known as brick paving, creates hardstanding outdoor surfaces such as driveways, walkways, patios, and roads using a pattern of individually laid bricks or blocks. These blocks are typically made from materials likeconcrete, clay, or natural stone and are arranged in various patterns and styles that create a beautiful centrepiece for any home.

Block paving offers a range of benefits, including durability, aesthetic appeal, low maintenance, eco-friendly features, versatility in design, and the ability to increase property value. Due to its flexibility, customisation options, and long-lasting performance, it is a popular choice for enhancing outdoor spaces.

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So, why choose Block Paving?

When transforming your driveway into an inviting and aesthetically pleasing statement piece, block paving might be your standout choice. Let's look at the benefits of block paving and why they might come out on top as your next driveway pick. 

Let's take a look at some of the main reasons why a concrete block paving driveway might be the best choice for you.

  1. Durability: 
  • Block paving bricks are an excellent, long-lasting surfacing solution because they can withstand heavy loads, vehicular traffic, and harsh weather conditions.

When considering paving materials for outdoor spaces, durability is a critical factor that can significantly impact the longevity and performance of the paved surface. Block paving really does excel in this aspect, offering exceptional durability compared to other traditional paving materials such as concrete or tarmac. 

Comparative Durability

Due to its composition and construction, block paving surpasses traditional materials like concrete and asphalt in terms of durability. Concrete paving, while sturdy, can be prone to cracking and damage over time, especially in areas with frequent freezing weather. 

Interlocking Design for Strength

One key feature that sets block paving apart is its interlocking design. The individual blocks are laid in a tightly interlocked pattern, creating a cohesive surface that distributes weight evenly and minimises the risk of shifting or settling. 

  • This interlocking mechanism enhances the paved area's overall strength, making it more resistant to cracking, heaving, or deformation.

Resilience

The interlocking design of block paving enhances strength and contributes to the paved surface's resilience. The flexibility of individual blocks allows them to accommodate minor ground movements without compromising the integrity of the overall pavement. 

  • Adapting to changing conditions helps block paving withstand environmental stresses and maintain its structural integrity over time.

Long-Lasting Surfaces

Whether used for driveways, pathways, or outdoor patios, block paving offers a reliable and durable solution that requires minimal maintenance and retains its aesthetic appeal for years.

2. Aesthetic Appeal

Block paving enhances the visual appeal of driveways, walkways, patios, and outdoor spaces through various colours, patterns, and textures, allowing for customisable and creative design options.

Enhancing Visual Appeal:

Block paving is renowned for elevating the visual appeal of outdoor spaces, adding a touch of charm and elegance to your home. The structured layout of interlocking blocks creates a visually pleasing pattern that enhances the overall aesthetic of the paved area, making it a focal point of design and beauty.

Colour Variety:

One of the standout features of block paving is the extensive range of colours available, allowing for endless design possibilities. From earthy tones like browns and greys to vibrant hues like reds and blues, block pavers come in a spectrum of colours that can be mixed and matched to create custom designs that complement your home.

Pattern Options:

Block paving offers versatility in design through different laying patterns that can add interest and character to outdoor surfaces. Whether opting for a classic herringbone pattern, a contemporary basketweave layout, or a unique circular design, the flexibility of block paving allows for creative expression and personalised touches that reflect individual style preferences.

Texture Options:

In addition to colours and patterns, block paving provides a range of texture options that enhance tactile appeal and visual interest. Combining different textures within a design can create contrast and depth, adding dimension to the paved area.

Customisation Possibilities:

The wide variety of colours, patterns, and textures in block paving enables customisation that suits specific design visions and preferences. Block paving allows for creative freedom in crafting unique and personalised outdoor spaces that reflect individual tastes and styles, whether aiming for a cohesive landscape theme or a bold statement piece.

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3. Easy Maintenance: 

Block paving requires fairly easy maintenance. Easy cleaning procedures, occasional re-sanding for stability, and cost-effective repair options for damaged blocks ensure hassle-free upkeep.

Easy Cleaning

Maintaining block paving is straightforward and typically involves regular cleaning to preserve its appearance and functionality. Simple tasks such as sweeping debris, washing with water and mild detergent, and occasional power washing can help keep block paving looking fresh and inviting. 

Occasional Re-Sanding:

Re-sanding is a maintenance task specific to block paving that involves replenishing the jointing sand between the blocks. 

Over time, the sand may wear down or wash away due to weather exposure and use. Re-sanding helps stabilise the blocks, prevent movement, and maintain the integrity of the paved surface. 

4. Cost Effective 

One notable advantage of block paving is the ability to replace individual blocks if they become damaged or stained. Unlike traditional solid surfaces, where repairs can be complex and costly, block paving offers a cost-effective solution for addressing specific areas of concern. 

  • By removing and replacing damaged paving blocks, the overall appearance and functionality of the paved area can be restored efficiently.

Increased Longevity:

Block paving's low maintenance requirements contribute to its longevity and resilience over time. By performing routine cleaning, re-sanding when necessary, and addressing minor damages promptly, block paving can maintain its structural integrity and visual appeal for years to come. 

5. Eco-Friendly

Block paving offers durability and aesthetic appeal, as well as a range of eco-friendly features that align with sustainable construction practices and promote environmental responsibility. 

Improved Water Drainage:

One of the notable eco-friendly advantages of block paving is its ability to facilitate improved water drainage compared to solid paving surfaces. The permeable nature of interlocking blocks allows rainwater to infiltrate the surface and seep into the ground, reducing runoff and helping to replenish groundwater resources. 

Reduced Heat Absorption:

Block paving exhibits lower heat absorption properties than solid surfaces like concrete or asphalt, making it a cooler and more comfortable option for outdoor spaces. By reflecting less heat and maintaining lower surface temperatures, block paving contributes to a more pleasant outdoor environment, especially in urban areas where heat islands can be a concern. 

Permeable Block Paving:

Permeable block paving takes eco-friendliness a step further by incorporating specially designed blocks that allow water to pass through the surface and into the ground below. 

This permeability feature helps to mitigate stormwater runoff, prevent surface flooding, and reduce the strain on municipal drainage systems. 

Sustainable Landscaping Solution:

Incorporating eco-friendly block paving options into outdoor design projects demonstrates a commitment to sustainability and responsible land use. 

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6. Increased Property Value: 

Block paving can enhance curb appeal, increase property value, attract potential buyers, and contribute to a positive first impression of your home.

Enhancing Curb Appeal:

The driveway and entrance are often the first elements of your property that visitors and potential buyers encounter, making them critical focal points for creating a favourable impression. 

Block paving is a visually striking option for surfacing driveways and pathways. Its elegant design and sophisticated finish instantly upgrade homes' curb appeal. 

Property Value:

The aesthetic impact of block paving extends beyond mere visual appeal, influencing a property's perceived value. Well-designed and well-maintained block paving can enhance a home's overall desirability and marketability, potentially increasing its value. 

Potential buyers are often drawn to properties with attractive outdoor spaces, and block paving plays a significant role in creating a sense of luxury, craftsmanship, and attention to detail that can positively impact the property's worth.

Things to consider

While block paving driveways offers numerous benefits, it's essential to consider some potential downsides associated with this surfacing option:

  1. Initial Cost: One of the primary drawbacks of block paving driveways is the relatively higher upfront cost compared to alternatives like concrete or asphalt. The initial investment in materials and installation may be greater, which can deter some homeowners with budget constraints.
  2. How much is a block paving driveway?
  3. As with any driveway costs, you will need to consider some elements. The cost of installing a block paving driveway can be higher than many other driveway options and will vary based on several factors. These include:
    • The size of the area. 
    • The type and quality of blocks selected.
    • Any additional features like borders or patterns, the complexity of the design.
    • The location of the property.
  4. The cost of a block paving driveway in the UK ranges from £50 to £100 per square meter for standard installation. For a typical driveway size (around 30 square meters), the total cost could range from £1,500 to £3,000 for basic block paving. 
  5. Maintenance Requirements: Although block paving is known for its durability, it requires regular maintenance to preserve its appearance and structural integrity. While this maintenance is fairly easy and straightforward, it can be time-consuming.
  6. This maintenance may include occasional re-sanding, weed control, and cleaning to prevent moss or algae growth, adding to the ongoing upkeep of the driveway.
  7. Potential for Weeds and Moss: The joints between block paving stones can provide an entry point for weed seeds and moss spores, leading to unwanted vegetation growth over time. While proper maintenance can mitigate this issue, keeping the driveway looking pristine may require additional effort.
  8. Risk of Displacement: In areas with heavy vehicular traffic or inadequate installation, individual blocks may become displaced or uneven over time. This can detract from the driveway's aesthetic appeal and necessitate repairs to address the issue.
  9. Limited Colour Stability: Some block paving colours may fade or change over time due to exposure to sunlight, weather elements, and general wear. This color instability could impact the overall look of the driveway and may require replacement or refurbishment to maintain consistency.
  10. Permeability Considerations: While permeable block paving options exist for improved water drainage, traditional block paving may contribute to surface water runoff issues if not properly designed or installed to manage drainage effectively.
  11. Installation Time: Installing a block paving driveway can be labour-intensive and time-consuming, especially for intricate designs or larger surface areas. Homeowners should be prepared for potential disruptions during the installation phase.

By weighing these potential downsides alongside the benefits of block paving driveways, you can make informed decisions based on their priorities, budget, and long-term maintenance considerations. 

Proper planning, quality installation, and routine upkeep can help mitigate these drawbacks and ensure that a block paving driveway remains a functional and attractive property feature for years.

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Final Thoughts

By choosing block paving, you're not just investing in a durable surfacing option but investing in your property's lasting looks and value. Block paving's seamless blend of aesthetics and durability, eco-friendly features, and design flexibility make it a timeless choice that transcends trends and leaves a lasting impression on visitors and potential buyers alike. 

So, block paving might be your choice whether you envision a welcoming driveway or a captivating patio. To learn more about our driveway options, or if you have any surfacing queries, please fill out the form below, and a team member will contact you as soon as possible.


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