Polymeric Surface Maintenance: Ensuring Longevity and Performance

Polymeric maintenance involves resanding paver joints with fresh polymeric sand that contains a special binder to help hold it in place. This sand inhibits weed, mold and fungus growth in the joints and stops insects like ants from tunneling into brick pavers. This sand can last for 3-5 years before it needs to be replaced.

When resanding, make sure that the new sand is spread evenly throughout the joints of each brick paver. You can use a power broom or just sweep it into the joints. If you want a really good result, use a plate compactor to pack the sand down. This eliminates air pockets and voids, which will weaken the joint and cause it to crack over time.

A plate compactor is a heavy machine that is used to compact earth and pavement materials. It is especially effective for driveways and patios with a lot of traffic as it can really pack the new sand down and prevent voids. This will save you money in the long run as you will not have to keep resanding and refilling the joints with regular masonry sand.

After the new sand has been swept into all the joints, it is important to wet down the surface to activate the polymeric maintenance in the sand. It is a good idea to use a “shower” setting on the hose and not the hard spray that could carry off the sand into the gutters or down the street. You should wait about 48 hours before driving on the pavers to let the sand set up.

Weeds, mold, fungus and insect growth in the joints of brick pavers can be unsightly and costly to remove. They can also reduce the value of your home and the effectiveness of your paver installation. Using a properly installed and maintained system of polymeric sand in the joints can eliminate these problems for many years.

While polymeric sand is the best solution for filling joints in a flexible paving system, it is not maintenance free. Over time it can wash out, crack or settle and will need to be replaced.

This article covers some of the mistakes that are commonly made when installing and maintaining this type of material. It will also provide some tips on how to avoid these mistakes so that you can get the longest life and highest quality from your paving system.

The first mistake that is often made is not watering the sand during the activation process. This can cause the sand to prematurely dry out and leave a haze on the surface. It is best to only wet down the sand once it has been brushed into the joints and allowed to set up for 48 hours.

Another common mistake that is made is skipping the steps of cleaning and brushing. This is a very important step to ensure that the polymeric sand stays clean and prevents dirt, debris and oil from sticking to it. Lastly, it is always a good idea to have your paving system sealed to further protect the surface and prolong its lifespan.