Care Notes for Hard Surfaces

Natural Stone, Porcelain Paving and Block Paving

We really hope you like your new paving! Like any product outside, it will take a battering through the seasons and it too will need some simple care and attention to keep it looking its best. Below are some helpful guidelines.

Natural stone surfaces

The most straightforward and certainly the safest way to clean your paving is to scrub with warm, soapy water. You can use washing up liquid but please check the product for any warnings about use on certain materials such as limestone.

For natural stone pavers, simply sweeping with a stiff broom and warm soapy water is usually enough to prevent the build-up of dirt from day to day foot traffic, and all manner of stains and marks left by Mother Nature.
You may notice that after cleaning natural stone, some discolouration may occur due to minor imperfections and mineral deposits. Don’t worry as this is perfectly normal and part of the inherent make up of natural stone.
If sweeping with warm soapy water doesn’t prove quite enough, then you may need a more effective cleaning method than just repeating the process. If this is the case, you may want to consider jet washing the patio with a round oscillating attachment… do not use a direct high power jet wash, it can damage the surface of the paving, particularly the distressed honed finish paving range.

We recommend a product called ‘Wet and Forget’, which is brushed onto the surface and helps protect against large algae build up.

Natural paving can be sealed- we recommend this is undertaken each year, an off-the-shelf product is fine and can be applied with a cheap garden sprayer

TOP TIP: Make sure the paving is bone dry before you seal it as any damp will get trapped in the slab and cause premature darkening of the slab.

Porcelain paving

If you have porcelain pavers in your patio or garden, you will be happy to hear that these pavers are relatively maintenance-free. A sweep with a broom is more than sufficient to get rid of the accumulated dirt on the tile. And, you don’t even have to sweep every day; you can sweep it about twice a week, and it will look as good as new.

However, if you want to bring a sheen onto the pavers after sweeping, mix a quarter cup of white vinegar in about two gallons of water. Use this solution to mop the porcelain pavers with a sponge mop. It will make the porcelain tile sparkle and glisten.

There is no doubt that porcelain pavers are extremely easy to clean. However, there are times when the tile can get stained due to spills, elements and other external and environmental factors:

Our quick guide…

  • sweep the dirt and debris from the surface of the tiles. If you like, you can also use your vacuum to clean it.
  • Cover the tiled surface with hot water and pH neutral cleaning solution
  • Allow the water to stand for about five to 10 minutes. Ensure that the cleaning solution does not dry out
  • Use a scrub brush to scrub the pavers and get rid of stains
  • Wipe away the cleaning solution and water, and rinse the floor thoroughly. If you have a wet vacuum cleaner, it will be ideal for sucking up the water
  • Let the pavers dry

We don’t recommend jet washing porcelain paving. **Help, I’ve spilt red wine/oil on the paving\…** Relax and be glad its not a carpet\…however you will need to act quickly**:** If the spill is caught early, simply blot or wash it into a drain right away. After rinsing or blotting the initial spill, apply a 1:1 ratio of water to white vinegar and scrub with a sponge soaked with water and dish soap. Then simply rinse and blot dry. **My natural paving is going white in places when dry\…**This is likely to be efflorescence, a crystalline deposit of salts that can form when water is present in or on brick, concrete, stone, stucco or other building surfaces. It has a white or greyish tint and consists of salt deposits left behind when water evaporates. The natural weathering of the surface will remove the staining if you are patient. If you have a serious build-up of deposits on a wall, a good scrub with a stiff, dry brush will remove the worst, and then follow this treatment a soft dry brush to make sure you dust off all the salts from the wall entirely

Block Paving

One of the questions we get asked regularly is “Can you pressure wash block paving?”

The short answer is ‘yes, you can’. But there are some conditions: Pressure washing is a good way of keeping your block paving in great condition, but if you do it incorrectly, or too frequently, you can damage your paving and ruin your driveway. The high pressure can disrupt the block paving bed surface, as well as the joining material which can cause your blocks to crack or come loose.

Our Tips for Using a Pressure Washer on Your Block Paving:

  • It’s a good idea to sweep any loose debris and dirt off your driveway before you start with the pressure washer
  • Remove large weeds either by hand or with a weed killer
  • Ensure you have your pressure washer on a low setting and keep it at a 30-degree angle to prevent the force of the water jet from damaging your block paving
  • Try not to stay too long on individual blocks; adopt more of a sweeping motion to ensure the water isn’t concentrated in one place. You should still be able to get the dirt off. There’s no need to use any chemicals, the water will do
  • Similarly, try to adjust your nozzle to a fan of water rather than a pointed jet in order to keep damage to a minimum
  • Pressure washers should only be used occasionally

Regular Basic Cleaning You should maintain your block paving driveway with soapy water and a stiff scrubbing brush with thick bristles, taking care not to disjoint any of the joining material or blocks. By regularly cleaning your driveway in this basic way, you can reduce the need to pressure wash your driveway. Once the paving is dry it can be re-sanded with kiln dry sand