One of the most compelling advantages of using interlocking pavers is their innate structural integrity. They’re designed for a snug, friction fit that imparts rigidity and performance. Once your eyes take in the beauty of the individual pavers, they may be drawn to what’s helping to add strength and complete the overall look — the material that goes between the pavers. It’s either a subtle aspect of the overall patio or driveway you’re admiring, and serves a solely functional purpose, or it’s also being used to impact the overall aesthetic. It could be what takes your landscape project to the next level with eye-popping visual flair.
There are many jointing material types, colors, and textures. Each type has its own appearance and structural merits. Other beneficial properties offered by various jointing compounds/fillers fall into the categories of drainage, settling, weed prevention, and maintenance.
Choosing the right material for the joints in your paver project involves a mix of considerations of your personal preferences and the trade-offs each material presents. The choice is ultimately dependent on knowing which materials work best with which textures and joint sizes. Your Unilock Authorized Contractor will be able to make the right recommendation for you. It used to be that what goes in the joints in any tiled structure was more or less predetermined, sometimes by tradition, and sometimes simply by the limited materials available. Think mortar for bricks and natural stone, and, of course, grout for tile. But the rigid stoicism of the past has been replaced by a far more adventurous freedom to design and express your tastes, unfettered by tradition and norms, and with more color and material options than ever.
How Jointing Material Can Transform Your Look
Polymeric sands and jointing compounds are the overwhelming front-runners as the go-to materials to finish joints on horizontal paver surfaces. They are versatile and come in a variety of designer colors.
Even the most fertile imagination can use a little sensory inspiration to see what’s possible. A great place to start is our design catalog. This online gallery boasts a visual portfolio of projects that convey a variety of visual effects that can be created with joint material. The right sand tone can provide high contrast to accentuate the color of pavers and highlight the layout, or subtly blur the lines between pavers.
Blending the joints into the pavers is a design strategy unto itself, and can result in a gorgeous paver project. A great example is the Series pavers with their compelling blend of varicolored texture gradients. And with their more complex and subtle surface variations, deemphasizing the joints can create an unbroken canvas of exotic hues and tones across your driveway, patio, or walkway.
The Practical Side
Installation, maintenance, and repair issues might not be quite as invigorating as color and design, but they’re important considerations all the same.
Years ago, basic jointing sand was the only joint material available. As it wore away, issues with weeds could arise. If you choose a basic sand, we recommend that you use a joint stabilizing sealer and be prepared to replenish the sand when needed.
Traditional polymeric sand is a special sand that stays in place longer because it is combined with a binding agent. It is installed dry and then moistened gradually to complete saturation. However, it’s not right for every project and needs to be installed with care to prevent hazing. Be sure to speak to your contractor about which joint material is best suited for the paver you have chosen.
Making the Right Choice
Our manufacturing innovations have created low-maintenance, durable, weather-resistant pavers that stand the test of time and that are renowned for their unique beauty. We go beyond our core duty to partner with customers, and act as a resource and partner through every aspect of their landscape project. Unilock offers extensive resources to inspire, educate, and help you visualize the transformations and additions you’ll be making to your landscape. We can also connect you with a Unilock Authorized Contractor who can help you decide on the right color and material. We’ve been partnering with contractors for over 45 years to ensure they have access to the right materials and equipment for the job, every step of the way.
The joint material is one way to bring out the pure beauty of the landscape materials you’ve chosen. It’s worth taking a close look at what will go between the stones and pavers, because it’s your project, your style, and your oasis that you and your family will escape to for years to come.