What Should I Use As A Base For A Patio

When it comes to building a patio, you have several different options. Each has its set of benefits and drawbacks. This is why patio builders utilize different base materials based on the type of patio so that it lasts for years to come. We are going to look at the different base types and what you should choose for your patio.

Common Patio Base Materials To Consider

Sand-Set Base

A sand-set base is a common choice by professionals for installing pavers. As the term suggests, this method involves use of sand as a layer between the pavers and the base. Once the sand has been laid down, the pavers are installed and pressed.

The biggest advantage of using a sand-set base is that it is very durable and will last for years to come if only done the right way. However, the downside to it is that sand-set bases are difficult to work with due to being dense and may require heavy machinery to work with.

Another disadvantage is that patios built using sand-set bases tend to grow weeds. To tackle that, professionals tend to use polymeric sand to prevent the growth of weeds between the gaps. And finally, working with sand is not that easy when compared to other base types.

The sand can neither be too wet nor dry, just damp enough to work with, which can be difficult to balance sometimes.

Open-Graded Base

An open-graded base utilizes crushed stone or pea gravel as its support base. It is beneficial in the sense that it is porous and allows water to run through without standing. But the thing with open-graded base setups is that they are mostly used for large paver projects such as commercial parking lots and driveways.

Moreover, if you live in an area that is prone to flooding and drainage issues, opting for an open-graded base is going to be a wise decision. In addition to that, an open-graded base unlike a sand-set base is forgiving during installation. In the case of a sand-set base, you have to start all over even if there is a minor mistake.

However, working with an open-graded base is comparatively easy and does not require using heavy machinery or equipment.

Synthetic Base

Synthetic base materials tend to differ from traditional base materials. The reason is that a synthetic base is made using recycled plastic bottles helping to promote and encourage eco-friendly patios and pavers. The biggest advantage of using a synthetic base is that they are very easy to install and do not require special equipment. On top of that, this type of base drains well too.

Moreover, synthetic base products are usually made with drainage holes and channels that allow the water to flow through freely and also feature a tongue-and-groove system that interlocks all the pieces to make the entire base appear as a single unit.

However, the only downside to it is its price. Synthetic base when compared to other base types is quite expensive. Additionally, they are not as durable as rock and sand setups.

Can I Use Dirt As A Patio Base?

One of the biggest mistakes people make when building a patio is using dirt as a base. Dirt is not a suitable material in any way as it can sink, shrink, move and swell, adding to your troubles and repair costs later on. Homeowners mostly opt for dirt as it is a cheaper option.

However, the downside is that it won’t last long and your patio will need to be rebuilt again if the soil level is uneven. In this case, you won’t be able to fix the patio but start all over again.

So, What Is The Perfect Patio Base?

There is no single answer to what is the perfect patio base. It primarily depends on the needs and preferences of the customer and the project. If you want to go for something that is tried and tested, you can opt for the sand-set foundation. And if you want easy installation, then an open-graded crushed stone base will be a better option.


In the end, before making a final decision, make sure to consider important factors such as the amount of traffic the patio will receive and the budget, etc. This will help you narrow down the options and pick the most suitable one. To avoid problems, have patio contractors Long Island install the patio.

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