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I have seen the ads and display of polymeric sand for paver joints. I am using 6x9 concrete paver with just regular paver sand. This is my first time doing this so I don't know if I will regret few years later as the sands got washed out. I live Pacific Northwest so there is a bit of rain but not like heavy water rain, more like shower continuously.

My questions are:

  1. How long the regular sand supposed to last? Any long term success story here?

  2. Is it easier to apply sealer instead of replacing the current sand (using pressure washer) and put in polymeric sand? Replacement seems like a tiring job in the future.

Thanks

  • Necessary? No. Much, much less work to maintain? Yes. It's well worth the investment. – keshlam Jun 7 '16 at 13:01
  • I imagine maintaining means refill the sand. How often that would be? If it's like once every couple years, then it's not too bad. – HP. Jun 7 '16 at 15:22
  • Polymeric sand is also much more resistant to weeds. Think of it as closer to grout than sand in function. – keshlam Jun 7 '16 at 15:51
  • Polymeric sand is also 100% non-permeable so keep run-off in mind. I.e. make sure there's no slope towards your house! – Huck Apr 5 at 17:34
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I live in the Pacific Northwest also. I have done several paver walks, I have used regular sand and polymeric sand. What I have found is a good even base is the most important part of the job. Regular sand tends to need a new bag about every 3 years and polymeric is going on 5 but will need an add this year. For me both tend to grow grass because our horses kick up a lot of dust in the arena on hot days then things grow, not bad but it happens with both. Make sure your base is even and the pavers are uniform height for the best long term results. I used 1/2" crushed quarry 1-2" thick under my areas and compacted it drains well and the pavers don't move. Good luck on your project.

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While the polymeric "sand" may last a big longer, I would just as soon see less small-grain plastic released into the wild. Real sand is just crushed rock, is completely inert so far as animal digestive tracts are concerned, and so on. Plastic detritus from all sorts of trash sources (either originally microparticles such as in body washes or broken-down particles from larger objects) have been shown to have severe effects on a variety of wildlife, including various fish that we harvest for food.

  • This is a great point, but doesn't answer the question. – isherwood Apr 5 at 17:40

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