Installing Brick Paver Basics

Are you searching for an easy way to build a home entranceway with brick pavers?

Then we have a project here for you. If your home entrance is made of old cracked bricks or is out of place, we have an easy way to build a new one or even a driveway from simple brick pavers.

Make a Plan Before Starting

You should spend some time planning your paver construction before diving in. The last thing you want is to begin working on the installation and have to design it on the fly.

All paving looks fantastic during the first few weeks or even months. Properly installed and maintained paving continues to perform brilliantly and look fantastic for decades.

Over time, your project will be inundated with acidic rain and alkaline tap water, scorched and dried by the sun, encroached by tree roots and affected by subsurface pressures of the earth. These events occur naturally over vast areas far beyond the boundaries of your project site.

Within the site itself, every paver at some time or another is likely to be exposed to soil, compost and leaf litter, fertilizers, cleaning chemicals, food, grease, animal excrement and everything in between.

To maximize the value of the investment in a new engineered stone pavement, you must consider how it will respond to these conditions over the long term.

5 Steps to DIY Paver Installation

Okay, so you’ve got your plan and design completed and you’re ready to begin installing your new pavers. Let’s get started!


Mark out the area to be paved allowing a little extra for working room.

Remove any soil, grass and all loose debris and vegetation and ensure to excavate deep enough to allow for selected paving and sub base construction.

For pedestrian paving projects, you can work off 100mm of road base, 30mm of sand plus the thickness of your paver. (This is not applicable for driveway paving.)

Preparing the base

It’s all about the base! Getting the foundation right is the key to your long lasting and low maintenance paved area.

Start by distributing the road base evenly over the excavated area. Compact the road base with a plate compactor at least twice – remember your hearing protection for this part of the job.

Spread washed sand over the compacted road base to a thickness of 25-30mm. Screed the sand with a timber float or straight edge and ensure it is on the same plane – check with a spirit level.

Laying the pavers

Set up a string line running along the edge(s) of your paved area. The string line will help ensure your edges are straight and pavers are flush. Begin laying pavers starting at one end of the project and working your way across.

Leave a 3mm gap between the pavers for the jointing sand (you will sweep this in later). Ensure each paver is square with the string line and level using the spirit level. Wiggle pavers into place and tap with a rubber mallet where required to ensure they’re level.

A common error we’ve observed is the failure to place joints both transversely and longitudinally. Joints must be placed in both directions at the correct minimum intervals.

To minimize cuts and improve aesthetics, the unit size of the pavers and the proposed paving pattern can be used to adjust the exact joint placement while still meeting minimum structural requirements.

Edging and Locking in The Paving

This is another really key step; you have laid your pavers and now you need to make sure they stay in place. Utilize a sand and cement mix to lock-in around all sides of your pavers. This is achieved by making a small sand and cement mix in a wheelbarrow and then pouring this mix along the edge of your paver from the base to approximately 75 per cent of the paver’s height on an angle.

This helps to ‘lock in’ the paved area and keep them in place. It doesn’t hurt to also use a little of the sand and cement underneath the outer header course, as this will create even more strength.

Locking sand and sealing

Finally, you can now add the locking sand. Sweep this sand in dry to fill in the 3mm gaps you left in the pavers. Once the sand is settled you can use a whacker with an old piece of carpet beneath it to compress and settle the pavers into the sand bed ensuring a great finish.

Hose down the area upon completion. Although not a must, sealers can enhance the look of the paver as well as protect it from both the elements and day-to-day wear and tear.


If you have any concerns, or would like more information, there are additional helpful articles on our blog. Of course, any member of our Big Earth Landscape Supply team will be happy to give you the right advice too, and all of your materials can be found at our local landscape supply store locations.

Good luck!

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