Concrete is one of the most versatile structural materials out there, but it can also be used to great effect around your home exterior. One of the first choices you’ll need to make will be to decide on choosing stamped concrete vs. pavers. Both use concrete, but they each have their own pros and cons for use in projects.
Stamped Concrete Vs. Pavers: Look and Design
No longer is concrete merely the grey industrial material you know it as. Modern concrete comes in a wide variety of textures and colours including stamped concrete and pavers.
Stamped concrete benefits from the ability to modify its look and texture as it’s made on-site. In fact, the colour can be altered right up until it’s poured. Because pavers and slabs are pre-made, what you see is what you get when purchasing them.
Stamped concrete isn’t without its downsides for design though. The final look will need to be cut with control joints to help prevent any future cracking that may occur. As a result, the placement of these joints are controlled by the shape and orientation of the area. Unfortunately, this may disrupt the aesthetic since the cut might need to happen in the middle of a pattern.
Conversely, pavers can easily be adjusted to create a consistent pattern without disruption and is often a better choice for locations with more severe winters. This is because each little slab is independent and can thus flex when the ground freezes then thaws. Stamped concrete can crack since it’s made up of large rigid pieces.
Stamped Concrete Vs. Pavers: Which Is Easier to Install?
Pavers have many advantages over stamped concrete when it comes to installation since they are pre-made. Because of this, they can be installed immediately or over time since the concrete has already dried and don’t require sealing. However, they are more susceptible to uneven ground and be a tripping hazard if installed incorrectly or as the ground shifts over time.
Stamped concrete does require around 3-5 days to cure after being installed, but it produces a complete slab that is consistently smooth. However, for the best results it’s a good idea to hire professionals to install it so you can get the exact colour and texture you want.
How Long Will Stamped Concrete Last Compared to Pavers?
Stamped concrete does require more consistent maintenance in order to maintain and in general won’t last as long compared to pavers. Stamped concrete is not a good choice either if you plan on having heavy object sit on top of it since they can cause cracks over time.
Pavers do require some maintenance, and will need to occasionally have the spaces between each paver filled with the appropriate material for your area to ensure they don’t come loose or become a safety hazard. Ultimately, choosing between stamped concrete vs. pavers comes down to the aesthetic you want, the time you want to spend getting either installed, and the durability of the material.