I had some guys come in and install a sprinkler system. We had to remove 6 pavers to put the pipe underneath, chipping away at some of the concrete under the sand. They wanted quite a bit to put those 6 pavers back, so I want to see what I can do myself.

PVC sprinkler line running under broken patio

I've done the research and the I have all the tools and some DIY experience. I understand how you want a concrete layer followed by a layer of base sand and then leveling sand, as well as polymeric sand in between the pavers when they're placed. I think I can place the 6 pavers back without too much of an issue.

What I want to understand is:

  • do I need to re-concrete the bedding that we chipped away or can I just fill it with sand? I'm concerned about the little trench where the elbow is, I don't want water pooling there.
  • if I do need to re-concrete the bedding, do I need to level that away from the house? Or can I just do that with the sand that's on top?
  • if I can just use sand, should I use base sand + leveling sand, or is one or the other enough? do I need to level the sand away from the house?
  • how do I hand tamp the sand when that pipe is in the middle without damaging the pipe?
  • in the picture, the pipe bends a bit; should I make sure they place an elbow towards the end or is a slight bend ok?

Thanks in advance.

  • Re: Pipe bend. They could add two 90° elbows and quadruple the chances for a leak (2 joints at each elbow). Or, you could not worry about it.
    – FreeMan
    Sep 20, 2022 at 14:12

1 Answer 1


concrete will be more stable, you'll only need one or two bags of concrete. but really it is optional.

do I need to level that away from the house

It needs to be match the other pavers well level enough to not pose a trip hazard

how do I hand tamp the sand when that pipe is in the middle without damaging the pipe

having water pressure in the pipe will protect it from crushing damage, putting water on the sand well help it flow

in the picture, the pipe bends a bit;

you could bend it twice as much and still be fine.

  • Thanks for all of your helpful comments! I was told it's ideal to match up with other pavers and use concrete, or they'll behave differently. Also was told if it's just sand it's going to be a water highway; i'm concerned because the downspout is right behind that pipe (but I should be able to add an elbow and divert it away). Any thoughts?
    – DavidN
    Sep 20, 2022 at 14:19
  • @DavidN Downspouts should be diverted away from the house/walls in all cases. Think about three feet is recommended(could be wrong), to keep water away from foundation.
    – crip659
    Sep 20, 2022 at 15:45
  • I think I'll be using paver base to fill in any concrete gaps, then weed barrier and then leveling sand to top it off.
    – DavidN
    Sep 20, 2022 at 16:50

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