Have you ever considered cement slabs for a patio? If you’re here, you most likely have been thinking about the cost-benefit of these hardscape products – and whether or not they can fulfill your home needs. Just like conventional pavers, concrete presents versatile properties that are sure to intrigue you.
If you’d like to find out the pros and cons of cement slabs for a patio, keep reading this article! Or, in case you want further information on concrete as a hardscape material, check out our definitive guide here.
Are cement slabs for a patio worth it?
There’s a reason why concrete is said to be the king of hardscape: it is incredibly versatile. Be it poured concrete, concrete paving stones, or concrete slabs, this material mingles the very best of beauty, functionality, and resistance, outlasting even your house if taken care of properly.
With that said, using cement slabs for a patio is as good an option as any. Unlike poured concrete, these products are available on the market as bigger, thicker versions of pavers, sharing similar characteristics and achieving the same purpose as their traditional counterparts.
Cement slabs are much used for:
- residential and commercial driveways;
- public parks;
- the meeting area around fire pits;
- pool decks;
- sidewalks and walkways;
- front yards;
- outdoor kitchens and barbecue areas;
- parking lots.
Concrete slabs come in several formats and can please many tastes. Aesthetically speaking, these oversize pavers are a perfect match for outdoor projects whose homeowners like to stray from a plain-looking floor and increase their curb appeal. Concrete is very resistant – even more than some natural stones – and most people consider it to be the best paving material in the industry, fitting in almost any site without problems.
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Pros of cement slabs
All in all, cement slabs for a patio can:
- reduce the gaps and cracks that lead to weed growth and ant infestations between smaller pavers;
- make for excellent stepping stones for a fraction of the cost of a quarrying equivalent-sized material;
- mimic the looks and textures of natural stones by a wide margin of price;
- adorn outdoor spaces that are already covered with pavers;
- be easily laid and relocated, if needed;
- withstand the test of time and drastic temperatures;
- get recycled later down the line.
Cons of cement slabs
On the other hand, these products also have some drawbacks when we compare them with smaller pavers – or even more popular options, such as porcelain. Choosing cement slabs for a patio will mean that:
- the cleaning routine will be the same as for smaller pavers;
- your project will still need to be sealed from time to time, thus preventing stains and cracks from appearing;
- depending on the angle of your floor, bigger units may crack under heavy weight and traffic;
- there will be a higher chance of discoloration due to direct sun exposure;
- blisters (small air bubbles that get trapped beneath the surface of poor-quality concrete) can appear, making your floor unleveled;
- there may be pop-outs because of the bigger surface area, causing fragments to break off and leave a hole in the slab.
Nevertheless, be mindful that a professional installation – with quality control and true expertise – can avoid any problem of this kind. As always, our tip is to contact your nearest paving stone provider and discuss every possible detail about your project!
Pavers or slabs?
As you see, choosing concrete for your project might be your greatest investment – there’s no question about it. However, the choice between pavers and slabs depends on what exactly you want to achieve with your project and what are the characteristics of your terrain.
If you can afford them, concrete pavers – just like porcelain and bricks – have an unmatched visual impact on the landscape. From a functionality perspective, however, concrete slabs are just as good, sometimes spicing up your outdoor design even further. Both are highly stylish and durable, so it all comes down to preferences and technical limitations.
Therefore, that choice should be left to professional hardscape contractors. Find one in your area that can help you – don’t risk making any decisions without consulting someone with expertise first.
Here at SS Pavers, we have worked with countless installations over our 12 years of activity. As such, we have seen many structures with mistakes that could have easily been avoided if only a professional were involved.
That’s why we always recommend that people make the intelligent choice of protecting their investment and hiring a professional. And if you’re around the Sarasota and Manatee counties, in Florida, we would gladly help you with your project!
Give us a call anytime at 941-773-3098 or email us at email@example.com.