When your patio and walkways have been designed with beautiful pavers, you want to do everything you can to ensure they hold up for years to come. One of the best ways to protect these patio and walkway pavers is by properly getting them ready for the upcoming winter season. Here is everything you need to know about preparing your pavers for winter.
Steps for Getting Your Pavers Ready for Winter
Homeowners often choose concrete pavers because they are durable, looking fantastic even after a harsh winter. However, there are a few steps you should take before the snow falls and the ice forms to preserve the appearance and integrity of the pavers.
- Sweep up fall foliage and clean away dirt and debris from the pavers. This step will ensure your pavers are not stained once the snow and ice melt.
- Clear your patio of large furniture and tools, such as tables, chairs, umbrellas, grills, and toys. If you leave these items on the patio all season long, they could cause the pavers to sink and shift as the ground freezes and thaws.
- If you notice that the locking sand between each block is low, go ahead and sweep new joint sand over the pavers to keep them in place. This step will also guarantee proper drainage as the snow and ice melt.
- Inspect your property for drainage issues. If water is being drained directly onto the pavers or pooling on the patio, these spots could form patches of ice, which would be very dangerous for anyone to walk on.
- If you haven’t already sealed your pavers and the temperature in your area is still above 50 degrees, go ahead and apply a sealer. This can keep your pavers looking nice and protect them from the harsh chemicals found in deicers.
Create a Snow and Ice Removal Plan
Speaking of deicers, it’s now time to come up with a plan on how you will handle snow and ice removal. Snow can take a toll on your pavers if it is not cleared away in a timely manner. However, your removal tactics may be just as harmful, if not more so.
Metal shovels, snowplows, and blowers often chip and scratch the textured surface of pavers, causing irreparable damage. Instead of metal, use a plastic shovel or plastic blades on your snow plow or blower.
When your area is facing a freeze warning, consider spreading sand over the ice instead of using an ice melt agent. The sodium chloride found in rock salts is corrosive to concrete walkways. Sand, on the other hand, will not damage your pavers. It doesn’t melt ice, but it provides enough traction to make walking around safer.
If you decide to use a deicing agent, choose magnesium chloride over sodium or calcium chloride. Then, remove the slush to keep your pavers in pristine condition as soon as the ice melts.
A Little Work Goes a Long Way
This may seem like a lot of work for a material that is supposed to be durable, but these extra precautions can keep your patio and walkways looking stunning their entire lifetime. Come springtime, you will not regret the afternoon you spent preparing your pavers for winter.
For the ultimate outdoor living space, speak to our design team at Superior Pool & Patio. We’ll help you find the perfect pavers to elevate your space. We can also provide tips on caring for pavers and cement patios and walkways all year long. Contact us today for more information about our patio and walkway paver options.