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We recently redesigned the walkway through our garden to our back door. This involved lots of scaping of the land -- especially to change the waterflow away from the house. The new walkway ends with a small brick landing. The contractor just laid them down and glued them in place.

I asked when they would finish it with mortar or sand or something. The contractor said that they were set tight enough and didn't need it.

Except when I step on it they move. And I live in Minnesota -- wont snow and ice get in there? Am I missing something or will this landscaping element not hold up?

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up vote 11 down vote accepted

I think you may have a problem brewing there. I have never heard of bricks being glued in a situation like this. Normally paving bricks will be set on a compacted base of stone dust and very fine packing gravel, then the joints are filled with fine mason sand. Mortar is rarely used, especially in cold climates as it will crack with any movement associated with freezing or heaving.

If your bricks are moving under your feet, then they were not seated properly or the base is not properly leveled or compacted. It is not acceptable to have any movement in the field from foot traffic. If your contractor says that is normal, or won't come back to fix the problem, You have a problem. The glue comment throws me. If your contractor said he "glued" the bricks in place, then I think you may have hired the wrong contractor. Maybe he specializes in hanging wallpaper!

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I second everything shirlock said. I'm in MN as well and our patio is pavers with polymeric sand in between the joints. I'd suggest heading to Menards, get a bag of the stuff, and brush it into your landing's joints. That may be enough to 'lock' them in place. Try that first before tearing it all up to start over (which may not be a huge deal, as one advantage of pavers/bricks is that they can be easily re-set when needed.) – DA01 Sep 16 '11 at 13:56

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