Why Outdoor Porcelain Pavers?
When it comes to choosing your outdoor tiles, you may be looking at paving for your outdoor space. A 20mm tile is simply an engineered ceramic tile that is extra thick so you can use it as a paver!
What is an Outdoor Porcelain Paver?
There’s no real mystery about Outdoor Porcelain Pavers. They are simply normal Glazed Porcelain tiles, but with a 20mm thickness and textured finish with a slip resistance rating. Because porcelain is so dense and strong, these 20mm tile are an incredible alternative to stone or concrete pavers in landscaping your outdoor spaces. The designs of Outdoor Porcelain Pavers imitate natural stones like Travertine, Marble, Limestone and Granite, and have an amazing colour range choice. Landscapers in particular are looking for other alternatives to real natural stone pavers, as they are becoming harder and harder to buy and ship from overseas and they can cost a fortune.
What are their benefits
Have you noticed without some love and attention, natural stone pavers fade over time, with their glory days only a few short years? Landscaping expert, Dave Franklin says to seal your natural stone pavers once a year because “sealing is like moisturiser to your hands”. Outdoor Porcelain Pavers in comparison seem like they have a permanent sunscreen, because it is glazed, that’s what gives it UV fade resistance.
Natural stone pavers can also bake in the sun, and the heat can curl up their edges breaking the installation bond underneath. Outdoor Paver Tiles are like those amazing people immune to the cold that wear shorts all year round in any temperature. The Glazed Porcelain body is good in both frost and resistant to thermal shock too.
When you look at a natural stone paver right next to an outdoor porcelain paver, you won’t see a lot of difference aesthetically. They are both beautiful, the porcelain paver will be 20mm, and the stone will probably be 30mm thick. They are both strong, but the Outdoor Porcelain Paver is more durable and can handle household chemicals and swimming pool salts on the surface.
Design Tip: You can match the tile used on the waterline to the tile that surrounds the pool for a classic and seamless design or use the same tile throughout.
Laying Outdoor Paver Tiles
When it comes to laying, the 20mm porcelain can be treated in the same way as regular pavers. Outdoor Porcelain pavers are dead straight, so installers love them. Natural Stone Pavers aren’t always so square or straight, and need a bit more finesse to lay them.
How can it be laid and who can install it?
Outdoor Porcelain Pavers are actually great for both DIYer and the professional landscapers with many varied options for installation. From walkways and patios to swimming pools, they can be laid almost exactly the same way as stone or concrete pavers on gravel/sand base, on grass, and the tried-and-true concrete slab base. They can be laid right up to the edge of a pool with some Australian installers having capacity to create coping to edge the pool from these pavers at extra costs.
When planning to install them on a driveway or in a commercial area, the outdoor paver tiles must be laid on a concrete slab to be able to handle the potential weight and pressure.
Pedestals: Semi-Permanent installation
One of the little-known facts about Outdoor Porcelain Pavers is that they can be easily installed on a self-leveling pedestal system. You can have sophisticated paving without the need for expensive structural work, and it can be dismantled just as easy. This is a particularly handy idea for renters, because when you move out, you can take it all with you.
Now you can give your terrace, balcony or patio the complete make over you have always wanted without glues, grouts or even demolition if your current concrete base is sturdy.
There are quite a few different types available. Pedestals can be can be as high as 550mm and as low as 10mm off the ground, and some types can compensate for floor gradients of up to 5%. This makes pedestals a very flexible and convenient solution.
Cutting Outdoor Porcelain Pavers
For the DIYer, our top tip is to design your space so that you don’t need to cut any of your Outdoor Porcelain Pavers, this makes the project so incredibly simple! But if you do want to attempt it yourself this is what we recommend to the professional landscapers and tilers.
First things first, make sure you have all the safety equipment that you need; safety glasses, boots, gloves, and a high-grade dust mask.
The most important thing to consider when cutting porcelain pavers is using the correct blade. We recommend using a J blade or a continuous diamond tip blade with a Wet Saw. The water supresses dust and keeps the blade cool. There are a few tile cutters on the market that will do the job also.
For smaller cuts we recommend using an angle driver. Unfortunately, because this is electric, you can’t use water to cool the blade. Just cut a little at a time, taking breaks to keep blade cool. Our hot tip is; run the blade after make a cut, using the air to cool the blade down quicker, and this hopefully will help the blade last longer.
Ok, so you have your tools ready, mark with a pen on the tile where you need to make the cut. Then go ahead and cut the porcelain paver with the wet saw from one end to the other letting the J blade do all the work for you.
TIPS: A few tips from a professional installer; use a timber pallet and a rubber mat as a platform to cut onto to reduce vibrations. Another tip for a cleaner edge is to make small preparation cuts on either end before starting the cut.
At Beaumonts we are specialists in Tiles including Outdoor Tiles of all kinds: large projects as well as private ones. Get in touch with us and tell us what the outdoor of your dreams is by clicking on the link. Our experts will be able to find the best solution. Dive in and enjoy to the fullest this summer!
Our Hot Tip: Feeling inspired? BOOK A FREE ONLINE OR IN-STORE CONSULTATION with one of our experts.