DIY Tips

Basic Step-by-Step Instructions for Building a Patio

A General Guide to the Patio Building Process

  1. Call Digger’s Hotline be sure you know what’s under the surface first.
  2. Mark out the area with marking paint.
  3. Excavate area to proper depth (height of paver + 1″ sand + 6″ base material).
  4. Place base material (3/4″ traffic bond) on top of geo-textile fabric and compact in lifts 2″ or less to ensure proper compaction.
  5. Take your time and grade base to proper level, and compact.
    *This is the most important part of the installation.
  6. Put edging in place and nail down to define the perimeter (1 spike per foot).
  7. Screed out 1″ thick bedding (torpedo) sand using a 1″ diameter pipe.
  8. Lay pavers field and mark for cutting.
  9. Compact pavers using a small compactor to set the pavers into the bedding sand. Start on the outside edge and work to the middle of the field.
  10. Apply joint sand by sweeping it into the joints. Compact the pavers again. Repeat until joints are full.
  11. Sweep surface clean, take extra care when using polymeric sand as it will stick to the surface.
  12. Wet sand down, per directions on the bags, if using polymeric sand.

What You Need to Get Started

Materials Needed

For Paver Walkways and/or Patios
  • Traffic Bond (base)
  • Torpedo Sand (bedding sand)
  • Polymeric Sand (paver joints)
  • Pavers
  • Edging and spikes

Tools Needed

  • Shovel
  • Hammer
  • Rubber mallet
  • Broom
  • Screed board
  • String lines
  • Knee pads
  • Screed rails
  • Hose for water
  • Level or string level

Helpful Tools to Rent

Equipment Rentals in West Bend is a good source
  • Compactor
  • Concrete Chop Saw or Table Saw