Patios are a decking alternative that are made out of stones instead of wood. They are immune to rot and are much more durable than traditional wooden decks, and require far less maintenance as a result. However, there are four main categories of materials that can be used as patio stones. Understanding the differences between these four broad types of materials can help you choose the one that best fits your needs (go to sites like this for professional help).
While most people associate concrete with a plain gray slab, you can get stained or patterned concrete. Acidic concrete stains come in a wide variety of vibrant colors, which means that you can customize your patio to match any type of aesthetic. Concrete is the least expensive of the four main types of patio stones, and since it is poured, is extremely easy to install.
However, concrete can crack when exposed to cold weather as it contracts and expands when exposed to temperature fluctuations. Additionally, concrete needs to be resealed every so often, which increases the long term costs and maintenance.
Brick patios carry with them a traditional, classic feel. Bricks retain heat very well, which means in the summer you will have a warm surface to walk on. Additionally, bricks can be arranged into unique patterns and designs, providing your home with a truly unique aesthetic.
However, brick requires a great deal of maintenance, as it easily absorbs water. This means that mold and mildew can grow on your patio, which can be a health hazard and can ruin the aesthetic of your patio.
Natural stones vary widely in terms of shape, size, and color, but provide an unparalleled luxurious look to your backyard. Because it is cut to meet your needs, all natural stone patios are custom made and can meet any aesthetic requirements that you desire.
However, natural stones are much more expensive than other types of patio stones, because they have to be quarried, cut, and transported to your home for installation. This increases the overall cost, but also increases the installation time of your patio.
Paving stones are an alternative to natural stones and are uniformly premade, making them much easier to transport and install, reducing the installation time and cost. However, they are still made out of real stone, and as such still provide a luxurious look to your home.
However, because they are prefabricated, paving stones do not offer the same amount of customization as natural stones do. This also means that you patio will not be unique, as it is quite possible for another home to have to exact same design.
I have a paved patio that I love, but it wasn't quite large enough for my needs. I have a very large extended family that I enjoy having over many times through the summer. Instead of dealing with sinking chair legs in the grass this year, I decided to invest in an expansion of my patio. Instead of having a patio that was obviously constructed at two different times, I talked with the concrete contractor about what I could do to make the older side of the patio blend perfectly with the new one. That was when I learned about the different finishes I could have on both patios. Visit my blog to find out how to combine the old with the new seamlessly.