Everything You Wanted to Know About Permeable Pavers

Traditional paving methods displace water, causing toxic stormwater run-off, pooling water, flooding risk, and erosion. But permeable paver systems work differently. They help you manage stormwater by absorbing rain much like the bare ground would.

Concrete brick paving systems are built to last. Thanks to its state-of-the-art water management technology, a professionally-laid permeable paver system will look fantastic and perform well for years longer than traditional paving methods. They’re perfect for patios, driveways, parking lots, and more.

What Are the Benefits of Permeable Paving Methods? 

  • Reduce runoff / Stormwater runoff -The pavement mimics natural ground to reduce runoff and support a healthier ecosystem around your home or business.
  • Long term durability – Traditional paving looks great for a few years. Then soil erosion, traffic, and heat expansion take their toll. This is not the case with permeable interlocking concrete pavers. These materials are stronger than concrete, so say goodbye to that cracking parking lot or having to repave every 4-5 years. The more efficient stormwater management of pervious pavers reduces the risk of washouts and erosion that cause cracking in standard paving. The brick spacing not only promotes healthier water management. It reduces heat expansion cracking.
  • Eco-friendly option – Porous pavement is a planet-friendly option. Get rid of the heat island effect outside your home or office, driving up your cooling bills and contributing to city heat. Do your part to improve water quality in any nearby ponds and streams that wildlife relies on to survive through more effective water management.
  • No more puddling – Traditional parking lots can collect water in sinking areas. These become water traps for those walking across the parking lot.
  • Cost effectiveness – Generally, permeable paving systems are budget-friendly and comparable to similar paving jobs.
  • Code compliance – Many areas have city codes related to stormwater management. Permeable pavers can easily check all code inspectors’ boxes, unlike traditional paving and laying options. 
  • Reduced liability – Cracking pavement is a liability for businesses and homeowners. But it’s so expensive to repair and replace traditional pavement constantly. A quality permeable paving system costs a little more upfront. But it eliminates this problem. You’ll have less maintenance and more time enjoying how great your parking lot or driveway looks.

How Does a Permeable Pavers System Work?

A permeable paver system has grass or gravel-filled cells built into the system. As stormwater lands on top, the porous surface allows water to quickly pass through into cells. Once the water enters the cells, it slowly and safely absorbs into the ground beneath. Instead of nasty runoff entering streams directly, the ground filters any oil, grease, or toxic substances, so they do not reach groundwater.

The rate of absorption varies by system, so you’ll want to discuss the best options for your project.

How Much Does Permeable Paving Cost Compare to Other Systems? 

According to HomeAdvisor, a typical 2-car driveway might run $6,000-8,000, while a traditionally paved driveway runs between $3,000 and 7,000. They’re priced right for both residential and commercial projects. The cost varies depending on the materials chosen.

For example, Plastic grid pavers have flexible joints with a plastic rollout system. These systems are very low-cost to install and maintain. But your parking lot is made out of plastic, which won’t appeal to many. On the other hand, permeable interlocking concrete pavers will cost a little more but do offer added water management a better look than cheaper systems.

Permeable Paver System: Different Types 

You have many choices when it comes to permeable pavement solutions. However, it’s important to know the pros, cons, and intended uses of different materials before you invest in a new paving project.  

  • Permeable Concrete

This is concrete mixed with stone. Someone can lay it without a sand or gravel base since it’s already so permeable. It’s important to note that permeable concrete does have a more rugged appearance than smooth concrete. But when you see how much better it is compared to an impervious surface, you may fall in love with its imperfect charm.

  • Porous Asphalt

When laid over a bed of stones, this typically non-porous surface can absorb water into the ground below. Porous asphalt is one of the less expensive paving systems in upfront costs. But it does require more maintenance because the pores can clog over time, slowing the absorption rate. 

  • Plastic Grid Pavers

These semi-flexible cells can be filled with gravel or even grass, giving the surface a very earth-friendly look. This system conforms to uneven earth rather than cracking as traditional surfaces would, making it a high-performance surface for drives and lots that endure significant weight or traffic, such as a loading dock, drive-through, or pickup zone. 

  • Rigid Plastic Pavers

Rigid plastic pavers are some of the most budget-friendly. However, because they’re not flexible, they can become uneven or cracked under heavy use. They’re not recommended for commercial paving that has to regularly endure high weight or traffic. These are designed for DIYers and the end result will reflect that.

  • Rolled Plastic Pavers

These paving systems are the most cost-effective because they can be rolled up, transported in a truck and then rolled out at your location. This system is recommended for foot traffic only but could handle light car traffic. 

  • Permeable Interlocking Concrete Pavers

With permeable interlocking concrete pavements, we carefully lay each permeable interlocking concrete brick to create an even and visually stunning driveway or parking lot. The expertly crafted grid allows water to pass between the bricks. This is one of the higher-priced paving systems. But it’s certainly the best-looking and performing option. The end result looks refined and will certainly become a topic of conversation among neighbors or customers.

Does a permeable paver system sound like your perfect match? We encourage you to explore the difference superior workmanship and years of experience make when planning your next paving project. Check out these before and afters.

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