Natural stones like Indian sandstone paving are brilliant and beautiful additions to any garden. They’re hardwearing, durable, and offer a uniquely attractive finish that ages much better than many other paving options available on today’s market. As ever though, care and maintenance are both particularly important when it comes to Indian sandstone paving, especially given that it’s constantly under pressure from the amount of foot traffic and weather exposure it endures throughout its lifetime.
So the question is, what’s the best way to give your paving stones that extra bit of TLC? Here at Bridge Street Stone, we’ve put together this little guide to help you keep your paving stones looking their best for years to come.
1. Scrub those stones
The easiest way to give your paving a facelift is to give it a good scrub. You might be surprised how nicely stone can come up after a thorough clean. There are a couple of ways you could go about cleaning your garden paving, and it all depends on what type of stone you’re working with. Before you start though, be sure to properly research how to clean whatever paving you have in your garden, so you don’t accidentally damage it.
Now, it’s true that Indian sandstone can be effectively cleaned by a power washer, but it’s also worth bearing in mind that natural stones can be easily damaged from high-pressure washing. So, to avoid any unwanted damage, it’s best to power wash on a lower-pressure setting. (We have a full blog on power washing Indian sandstone if you’re interested in learning more.) On the other hand, limestone paving shouldn’t be power washed at all. The pressure is too powerful, so it can leave the stone damaged and open to erosion. To clean limestone paving, first remove all debris from the surface, then use a soft bristled brush and some non-acid soap diluted in warm water.
Porcelain paving can be cleaned with a stiff bristled brush, warm water and a regular household soap - nice and easy! Just be sure to wash the residue off before letting it dry.
2. Repoint that paving
If you’re really getting stuck into transforming your garden paving, you might be considering repointing the stones. Repointing basically involves removing and refilling the cement between the joints of your paving stones. This could be a result of them being improperly laid, or the incorrect materials being used the first time.
It’s also worth bearing in mind that old grout can naturally crumble and crack overtime from weathering and weeds — so if this is happening in your garden, it’s a good sign that your paving needs repointing. Repointing your paving can help give it a new lease of life, especially if you combine it with a good scrub like we talked about in the previous step. You’ll have your paving looking better than ever in no time.
3. Seal those slabs
If you’re looking to give your slabs an instant refresh, then sealing them is the way to go. We always recommend sealing your garden paving, natural stone or otherwise. Natural stones like Indian sandstone are porous, and they’ll soak up any liquid left sitting on their surface, making the likelihood of staining quite high if liquid is left to sit on the slabs for extended periods. It might not sound like a big deal when you think about the rain, but it goes for all liquids - mud, oil, grease from the BBQ, liquid from a pile of rotting leaves, moss, spilt drinks, you name it. And because natural stone is so absorbent, it can be incredibly difficult to get these stains out, so the best thing you can do is to prevent it from happening in the first place.
Sealing your stones also has other benefits: it helps to protect your garden paving from erosion, wear and tear, mould, UV rays, and it really highlights the beauty of the stones. There are plenty of great sealants on the market tailor-made for specific types of stones, and some can even have colour enhancing properties if you want to add a bit of extra oomph to your garden. As a general rule of thumb, sealing your stones every 3-5 years will increase their longevity and keep them looking their best for years.
Following these tips can help you transform your old garden paving and restore it to its former glory. With proper care, and a little TLC, your paving will continue to be an inviting space where you can enjoy the outdoors for years to come. And if you’re interested in adding some stunning paving stones to your outdoor space, you’re in the right place!
Here at Bridge Street Stone, we supply the UK’s very best sandstone paving, and we stock a variety of colours including Kota Black, Kandla Grey, Autumn Brown and Golden Leaf. Our Indian sandstone is imported straight from operated quarries in India, so if you’re looking to give your patio the perfect upgrade this summer, feel free to give us a call today on 01282 860571 - we’re always happy to help!