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Patio with 12x12 pavers

My husband and I are wanting to do a patio to extend our outdoor living area. We live in AZ where our ground is very rocky. Currently we have river rock in the backyard. We want to know if we need to add crushed rock or just add sand and tamper it down before we lay our stones down? Also do we need to rent one of those machines that will set the stones in place or a simple mallet do? We have never done any type of major DIY projects, but we want to do this ourselves to save money. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thank You Castillo Family
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Posted 2012-03-17T00:26:21+0000  by castlefamily castlefamily

Hello Castillo Family!


Welcome to the community, I like your username castlefamily that plays off your last name en español !


If you live in the southern half of AZ that gets little to no rain annually, you can forgo the step of crushed rock, since it sounds like you already have a sturdy base.


The bed of existing rocks needs to be at least 1" thick and using a vibratory plate compactor, aka automatic tamper will guarantee this layer as well as the paver base being put over it will be level. While you can use a hand tamper, the automatic version available for rent at your nearest Home Depot Tool Rental Center will save you a lot of time and energy on that hard Arizona soil.

This Tamper Can be Rented at your nearest Home Depot Tool Rental Center!

I've never heard of a machine that sets the stones in place, but all you'd be doing is putting the stones in place with a rubber mallet (or alongside a 2 x 4 for added durability).


In fact, we have a great video online that demonstrates proper paver installation from start to finish. Danny uses a hand tamper in his video, but he doesn't have rocky soil like yours! Click on the screen shot below, and it will take you right to it...

Click Here To View Patio Paver Install Video 


Well, I hope this information provided will help you out, and I wish you and your family the best of luck to update your outdoor living area! If you guys ever get a chance, you can update us here and show us your handy work with pictures!


Have a great day,


Posted 2012-03-17T21:08:41+0000  by Joseph_HD_ATL

This is a pretty straight forward project once you get the hang of it. Follow the instructions provided above and you shouldn't have any problems. Your new patio will look great, but be sure to add a patio heater for those cooler Arizona temperatures in the winter.

Posted 2012-04-04T19:06:46+0000  by drm
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