UGANDA, Kampala | Real Muloodi News | In Uganda, concrete is the most common hardscaping material within a landscape design. It is used for driveways, patios, pool desks and garden pathways. With hardscaping, you typically have two options that involve concrete; poured concrete slabs and concrete pavers. In this article will explore the advantages and disadvantages of each option.
What is a Concrete Slab?
Concrete comprises cement and sand (fine and coarse aggregate mixed with water), which hardens. A poured concrete slab is poured as wet concrete mix onsite, and left to dry into a single slab that covers a large surface area. Concrete slabs are commonly used to construct driveways. Sometimes, a tile-like pattern and colour can be applied while the concrete is still wet, to give it a paver or brick look. This is called ‘stamped concrete’
What are Concrete Pavers?
Rather than being poured onsite, concrete pavers are set and ready to use. They come in various shapes, sizes, and colours, and can be arranged into unique patterns. Pavers commonly have two types. The first is interlocking pavers, which are very thick and sturdy, designed to take a lot of weight. Interlocking pavers are used for driveways and parking areas. Then there are architectural pavers, which are thinner and are used for interior flooring and landscaping.
Concrete Slab Vs. Concrete Pavers
Concrete slabs offer rich design possibilities, as their pouring allows you to make any shape in a short time.
They come in distinct colours and patterns, also allowing you to create the colours you want on site. They can be made to appear visually like natural stone.
Concrete slabs require a sealant to protect them against weather, leakage, and chemicals.
They require professional installation; you cannot install them yourself, making their initial cost expensive.
Concrete slabs are likely to crack, especially in locations with vibrations (earthquake-prone areas).
The colours will fade over time with the sun’s impact.
Also, frequent use can deteriorate designs on the slabs.
They need to be resealed at least once a year.
The cost of concrete pavers is the same as slabs, but they do not require replacement like slabs. Hence, pavers are more cost effective; they are easy to fix and come in various colours and patterns.
Pavers allow you to be creative, making unique designs with borders, accents, etc.
However, pavers require maintenance every year or two. Unless you use binding polymer to harden the joint sand, weeds are likely to grow between pavers.
If pavers are not properly installed without proper soil preparation, they can move.
Finally, it is also important to note that some batches of pavers can be lighter or darker. Thus, installers need to be careful and ensure they are correctly blended.
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