Are you planning a project this summer that requires laying flagstone? If you are, then it’s important you know exactly what you’re doing. This is one of those projects that you can save lots of money on by doing it yourself, but this is also the type of project that is easily messed up. There are many important steps you need to know before even attempting to lay your flagstone walkway or patio. Not knowing these steps can quickly turn your weekend project into a long ongoing summertime project.
Laying flagstone on your patio is one of the best ways to beautify it. With its attractive, rustic appearance, durability requiring minimum maintenance, and a wide range of options as far as color, shape, and size are concerned, flagstone is an obvious choice for landscaping the outdoors.
Follow the steps below when laying flagstone for your new patio:
- Pick level ground and measure out the patio with tape. Mark the measurements with strings tied between stakes. If you are planning a rectangular patio as is the norm, ensure that the diagonals of the rectangular plot measured before are equal. This shows that measurements were correct.
- Use a spade to dig 4 inches deep along the perimeter of the rectangle mentioned above. Next, use a digging shovel to excavate the mud and soil up to the 4 inches depth. 4 inches can be considered the minimum foundation required for patio installation.
- Use a carpenter’s spirit level on a wooden plank placed along and across the excavated opening to check for evenness. Remove additional soil from one end or the other, as needed, to achieve exact levelness.
- Moisten the soil in the excavated area and tamp it down with a tamping tool. With a level base now, frame in the rectangle with a form that acts as a mold to contain the sand or mortar to be applied later.
- Use a screed to level out the sand or mortar. If you are using mortar for wet construction, you must complete laying flagstone before the mortar dries. If sand is used, you can do so at your convenience.
- Place the stones on the base keeping as little gap as possible. Tamp each stone down with a rubber mallet. If a stone is resting too far down, remove it and place more sand/mortar under it. If a stone is sitting up too high, scrape away some sand/mortar from under it.
- Once all the stones are in place, dump some more sand on the patio. Take a broom and sweep it into the cracks between the stones. Your flagstone patio is ready.
These steps give you a basic idea of what this project is all about. For detailed instruction on every step of this project, do yourself a favor and visit SUI website.