Category: Blog

Building Your Own Fire Pit: What to Remember and Avoid

A fire pit can be a great addition to any home or property because of its added value and entertainment potential. It can really add some life to your backyard and provide a better way to host gatherings. 

Building your own fire pit is one of the easier tasks to do in terms of home installations, so you should be able to set up your cozy little outdoor setup in no time. Just make sure you’re aware of the essential practices and biggest no-nos. 

Things to Remember

Make Sure to Leave Room For Easy Access

You should have enough space to comfortably maneuver around the fire pit. Seating placement should be at a comfortable distance, where it’s not so near that it’s tight and dangerous but also not so far that it’s practically disconnected. You also want to make room between the pit and other materials for safety purposes. 

Get the Proper Safety Gear 

It’s tempting to just go about the simplest bits of the process in your most comfortable clothes, but it’s still a construction project at the end of the day. In fact, it’s better to prep for daily use and also buy the right safety gear in the event of a fire going out of bounds from the pit. You’ll want an extinguisher and a fire blanket, at the very least.

Make Sure You Install a Steel Ring

This is one of the most critical parts of the fire pit, so you can’t forget about it. You want to line the inner walls with a steel ring so that the walls of the pit don’t end up drying out over time. More than simply preserving the looks of your fire pit for longer, it is also a matter of maintaining its durability and strength.

Use Porous Materials When Building

The materials you use for the pit itself and around it must absolutely be made with porous options such as brick, concrete, and limestone, among others. This prevents water from getting trapped. If water builds up, you will be at a higher risk for trapping steam that can lead to an explosion. Porous paving and structure will be the way to go.

What to Avoid

Don’t Place Your Fire Pit on Concrete

Even though you can use concrete if you choose to, you may want to avoid concrete as flooring. The heat emanating from the fire pit will eventually cause it to crack. There are other heat-resistant options to choose from that still fit the bill of porous paving. 

Don’t Put Your Fire Pit Near Hazards

Just as the pit itself shouldn’t use flammable materials, be wary of any fire hazards that may be present within twenty feet of it. This includes wooden structures and natural plants alike.

Don’t Build Without Local Clearance

Your local government needs to approve of your plans before you start building, lest you be open to fines and liabilities. There are tighter regulations on fire pits now, so you’ll need to get the proper permits.

Conclusion

With these in mind, your fire pit installation should be an easier and safer process. It’s really worth the effort and can likely last you for years to come. There are tons of design options out there when it comes to fire pits, too, so you should not feel limited by one aesthetic. 

Source your materials from renowned experts on permeable paving in Sydney. StoneSet is the leading specialist in the country, so be sure to contact us about our done for you and DIY kits today!

Top 5 Applications of Permeable Pavers You Should Know

The standard solution to drainage for walkways and roads have always been to redirect the water to drainage systems. While this may remove the water pool from road surfaces, it leads to storm surges and transfers road pollutants to natural water bodies.

Permeable pavers are the rapidly rising alternative to traditional materials for many surfaces, from homes to public spaces. It allows rainwater to seep through, which is why it’s considered a sustainable and eco-friendly system.

What is a Permeable Paver?

Permeable pavers are not entirely permeable. Rainwater or runoff does not flow through the pavers to the adequately prepared gravel and soil beneath. When you put up a permeable pavers system, the spaces between them allow water to travel through to the various levels beneath.

Permeable pavers are typically composed of baked clay brick or concrete. The joints between the pavers are filled with crushed aggregate. This aggregate can be made of crushed quartz, granite or marble.

Here are some of the top applications of permeable pavers:

  1. Parking Lots

Permeable paving can be one part of green parking lots, including rain gardens, art, trees, solar covers and other creative elements. Paving and landscaping choices have a significant effect on the environmental impact of parking lots.

  1. Shopping Centres

Shopping centres really can’t do with slippery surfaces. Like driveways, shopping centres often need to meet specific design conditions whilst raising the safety to the highest level.

Permeable pavers can help reduce the likelihood of accidents caused by slippery surfaces and water-related downtime, thereby increasing the shopping centre’s efficiency.

  1. Entrances

Entrances can be bold and imposing, grand or reserved. They’ve got to look a certain way, but they must always fulfil their primary function: to allow people to walk towards the establishment safely.

Permeable pavers feature the perfect materials for the entrance to a home, building, or property. The design possibilities and incredible drainage capacity will ensure your entrance looks fantastic and other tangible benefits, like anti-slip texture and ease of maintenance.

  1. Driveways

There is nothing worse than pulling onto your driveway after a wet day to find it brimming with stagnant water. It is hard to prevent puddles on a large flat surface area unless you use permeable paving, promoting natural drainage.

Permeable pavers maintain an ideal driving surface by providing fantastic water drainage. Excellent drainage combined with an anti-slip surface means you don’t have to worry about entering or exiting your car in slippery conditions whilst your driveway remains clean-looking.

  1. Public Spaces

Heat islands are typical in public spaces because of the amount of land covered by concrete or asphalt paving. These surfaces absorb heat, which increases the temperature and causes a heat island effect. Cities can significantly minimise heat islands by installing permeable pavements, which allows the soil underneath to breathe and bring the temperatures down.

Final Thoughts

Permeable pavers are excellent alternatives to traditional concrete when it comes to low-volume-traffic areas where stormwaters are frequent. While it may cost higher than other methods, it saves space by removing the need to build complex drainage systems.

Permeable pavers can be utilised everywhere concrete or pavers are used, such as driveways, parking lots and public spaces. Before you begin, it is best to speak with an engineer or a professional installation service.

If you’re interested in permeable paving in Sydney for your home or other spaces, Stoneset can help! Since 2008, our company has built an impressive portfolio of projects, from porous driveways to national landmarks. All Stoneset products allow water to pass through while maintaining a hard-wearing surface suitable for vehicular traffic. Contact us today for a quote or more information about permeable paving!

 

 

Reasons Why You Should Get a Permeable Driveway Installed

Did you know that some traditional amenities as mundane as driveways may not be good for the environment?

Your concrete driveway may be blocking rainwater from seeping into the ground. Instead of being absorbed back into the ground with natural microorganisms to purify it, the rainwater flows down drainage channels where it picks up trash, dirt, and oils that eventually pollute your town’s lakes and rivers.

Luckily, permeable driveways are now available as solutions! In this article, we will discuss everything you need to know about permeable pavers and installing a permeable driveway.

The Difference of a Permeable Driveway

Yes, you would like for the rainwater to drain into the ground where the natural microorganisms can break down the pollutants and purify the water, but you also wouldn’t want to get your car stuck in the mud. This is where permeable driveways can offer you an environment-friendly solution!

Permeable pavement is made with durable materials that allow rainwater to soak into the ground below. You get a fully functional driveway without the environmental hazard of a regular concrete driveway.

Other Benefits of Getting a Green Driveway Installed

Other than being good for the environment, permeable pavers also offer the following benefits:

  • They can be installed anywhere around your home
  • They reduce the heat emitted by the usual asphalt driveways and walkways
  • They are more durable, stable, and easier to repair and maintain
  • They look great compared to smoothed out cement. You can even have a stone mosaic installed!

How Is It Permeable?

Permeable driveways are made from layers of concrete pavers separated by joints filled with small stones. The gaps in these joints allow water to flow through an “open-graded base” made up of stone layers with no small or fine particles. This allows for 100 per cent permeability while the base stores and filters water, which further reduces pollutants.

Other than making your driveway more durable and last longer, it is also environmentally friendly.

The Materials Used for Green Driveways

Instead of the boring old concrete driveway, the green driveway offers you a variety of looks. You can choose various porous materials for your green driveway, including:

  • Brick designed with spaces between each brick
  • Crushed stone and gravel usually from decomposed granite loosely set on a bed of sand
  • Dry-laid pavers or installed stones on a bed of sand and gravel
  • Reinforced grids or a mesh between stone tiles to create a grid look
  • Grass pavers for a green landscaping look
  • Stones such as flagstone or slate with rocks and gravel
  • Plastic mats with cells which can either be circular or hexagonal

How Are They Installed?

A professional paver installation crew will design a driveway for you which meets the local and state requirements for water runoff. They can then be installed mechanically, which reduces the time and cost of the installation.

Conclusion

It is important for rainwater to naturally seep into the ground for natural microorganisms to purify it before reaching our groundwater. Otherwise, it encounters pollutants that eventually reach the area’s waterways.

You don’t have to compromise the convenience of a concrete driveway to be environmentally friendly. Permeable paving is now available as a green solution. You don’t need to get your car stuck in the mud just to be helpful to the environment.

Are you looking for reliable paving contractors in Sydney? We at Stoneset offer a variety of sustainable porous driveway options for you. Just head on to our website to learn more and get a free estimate!

 

Everything You Need to Know About Permeable Paving

Every homeowner deals with external water in different ways. It has to be done, or else your home will sustain water damage—something that you don’t want to happen because repairs are always costly. For most, having an unclogged drainage system and maintenance is more than enough. Another popular method of dealing with outdoor water is through permeable paving.

Permeable paving is a type of outdoor groundwork that uses different building materials to serve one purpose: to allow water to flow through its surface. Non-porous materials typically direct water to storm drains, but surfaces made with porous materials help water flow into open spaces in-between the materials. The porous materials also act as filters for pollutants and solid particles from the water passing through the surface. Permeable paving is an excellent solution for its water-saving properties, which is why the residential and commercial sectors alike are starting to use it now more than ever.

In this article, we’ll shed some light on the subject of permeable paving. Read on below to learn more.

More about Permeable Paving

Permeable paving is typically done in large walkways or driveways. A vital step of the process is having a 6-inch gravel bed foundation below the porous material to hold the paving structure in place. The structure itself has four layers, each of which plays a role in filtering stormwater. These are:

  • First layer – The actual paving material
  • Second layer – The gravel bed
  • Third layer – The filter fabric
  • Fourth layer – A sand bed so that the structure won’t shift

The Materials Used in Permeable Paving

There are 7 different kinds of materials used in permeable paving. These are:

Brick

Brick paving is typically used as a porous paver by leaving gaps between each brick. The clay material installed will direct water to the gaps that lead to joints or open spaces.

Crushed Stone/Gravel

This is the cheapest paving material because it’s usually decomposed granite or gravel. The material can be loosely packed on top of levelled soil, allowing rainwater to pass between the small pieces of stone.

Dry-Laid Pavers

Dry laying refers to installing stones over a bed of sand and gravel. This lets water pass through the openings found between each stone. In some cases, the pavers become hosts to growing grass or moss between the cracks.

Grass Pavers

Grass pavers are similar to dry-pavers because the walkway or driveway is made of grass pavers, resembling a lawn. Within the pavers, there are open cells filled with dirt where grass can be planted.

Plastic Mats with Cells

These mats are typically in the shape of a circle or a hexagon with cells that allow you to plant in them. Alternatively, you can also add porous material within the cells.

The Pros and Cons of Permeable Paving

In general, different types of materials for paving have different uses, meaning they offer different pros and cons. These include:

Permeable Paving Pros:

  • Visually appealing to your home
  • Different options are available
  • Environment-friendly
  • Reduces water runoff to gutters and storm drains
  • Surfaces are skid-resistant

Permeable Paving Cons:

  • Concrete can sustain damage due to harsh weather conditions
  • Considerably expensive during installation
  • Higher maintenance compared to standard paving

The Cost of Permeable Paving

Permeable paving’s cost is not defined by the work being done, but rather the materials used. Let’s say you choose bricks for paving: the cost will depend on the material and the installation—which tends to cost more than the material itself. You’ll need to call in a professional to do the installation work because they have the necessary knowledge and expertise for the job.

Conclusion

More and more homeowners are pushing towards having a sustainable home life, which is a good thing. We’re still very far off, but permeable paving is a significant first step because it helps in saving water while keeping your home safe at the same time.

A paving contractor can get the job done if you want permeable paving for your home. Stoneset has knowledgeable and experienced paving contractors in Sydney that are qualified and can get the job done. Contact us today to get started!

5 Great Advantages Permeable Paving Offers to Your Project

Urbanisation and paving have taken many strides in being more caring and conscious of the environment, especially when dwindling water levels and increasing global warming are forecasted in the near future. Something that many property projects should try out in consideration of that is permeable pavement.

Permeable paving refers to a type of porous urban surface that acts as a reservoir for any water flow from rainstorms. The pavement helps in allowing that water to flow and trickle into the soil below rather than letting an overwhelming volume get to the ground.

Curious about what the benefits of permeable paving are before incorporating them into your project? Here are five excellent advantages to consider:

1) It’s Easy to Install

Permeable paving is rather easy to install compared to other pavement systems, as there’s no need for any specific tools or machinery to lay it all out. Leaving the installation process to the professionals will get things done faster too.

Do take note that you can choose between a temporary or permanent installation for your permeable paving. Both styles wouldn’t result in a blockage, but a permanent installation would entail a more solid placement right from the base.

2) It’s Cost-Efficient

If price is something you’ll worry about, permeable paving will give you less to think about. The cost for permeable paving is low when compared to other pavement systems, and the price of installation is more reasonable since there won’t be too many materials needed.

Just because the price is low doesn’t mean that the pavement’s efficiency is down, too. The quality of permeable paving is quite great for what you’re paying for, and it’s often dubbed as a very functional version of asphalt or concrete paving.

3) It’s Durable and Adaptive

Permeable paving is rather durable. Aside from the material being used, its entire structure and placement allow for the pavement system to be incredibly functional even amid foot traffic or heavy rain.

Other pavement systems’ functionality may be subject to how the soil underneath is doing, but permeable paving is different. Instead of getting worse, the pavement system adapts to the ground without loosening or buckling.

4) It’s Effective for Drainage

As we mentioned above, the prime purpose of a permeable pavement system is to help with the water flow. This paving type is praised for how well it assists in water drainage, preventing you from other storm drainage systems that would double into extra costs and maintenance.

Aside from effectively helping a property’s drainage, permeable paving helps combat risks of soil erosion. This may be subject to the area and how severe the weather conditions are, but permeable paving generally prevents soil from moving around and deteriorating.

5) It’s Appealing in Appearance

Lastly, an advantage that you may want to consider is the boost in curb appeal. Permeable paving can help bring a lot of personality and appearance to a certain patch of land. If you want to spruce up your garden or improve a pathway to a building you’re putting up, consider getting permeable paving done.

Conclusion

Permeable paving’s benefits range from ecological, financial to visual appeal and more. It’s an incredibly versatile pavement system that people should try and incorporate more into their residential and commercial projects.

Need permeable paving in Sydney? StoneSet specialises in resin-bound paving in Australia, featuring an impressive portfolio in porous driveways, national landmarks and more. Contact us today!

4 Reasons Why You Should Not DIY Your Permeable Driveway Without Professional Advice

Porous paving is a practical choice for long-lasting paving. It naturally reduces surface runoff that can cause flooding, soil erosion, and water puddles that leave potholes in their wake. All these are possible because permeable paving lets the water through and into the soil.

Sure, you can try to install a driveway with porous pavers by yourself. But here are the reasons why you shouldn’t.

 

You Miss the Little Things That Can Cause Big Problems

One of the most crucial portions of paving installation is site assessments. During these visits, a paving professional checks possible drainage blockages, slope gradients, soil type, underground utilities, and more.

Professionals take careful note of these things and plan around them because they can affect the look, efficiency, and longevity of the paving project. Although you can check for these things, too, the possibility of missing one or two factors that can damage your driveway in the future is very high.

Take soil type as an example. The soil that would be under your driveway may look uniform, but is it the same 200mm underneath? Forgetting to check for potential non-porous layers under the surface may gradually trap water and cause the soil to erode under your driveway.

 

You Forget to Plan with the Seasons in Mind

Permeable paving does a great deal to prevent puddles from forming, but it’s not perfect. There will be seasons that will inundate your driveway with water, and puddles will be inevitable. However, professional paving contractors plan for these situations.

Experienced pavers know when a porous driveway needs a bit of a slope to prevent waters from pooling despite heavy rains. They know the suitable adjustments to ensure that your driveway looks good and works well regardless of the season.

 

You Cannot Level the Surface Enough

Installing permeable driveways require more attention to detail than you would imagine. To properly install a driveway, you need to make sure that the undersoil is perfectly levelled, the paving layers are impeccably even, and the driveway is not crooked.

Yes, you can try and see that everything is levelled, even, and straight. But relying on your eyes alone can be problematic.

You may think you have levelled the soil properly and the first few paving system layers evenly only to find small hills and grooves in the final layer. Do you scrape everything out, or do you leave it as it is?

Paving contractors are not just equipped with the right tools to pave your driveway. They also have the technical know-how to address any issues that may arise along the way.

 

You Don’t Have Enough of the Right Material

Paving one portion of the driveway at a time is a good idea to minimise levelling and evenness issues. But it is also possible that you may not ration your materials properly and run out before you even finish the driveway. You can always get your dirt and sweat-covered self to the nearest Bunnings to buy supplies, which can be quite frustrating.

But with professional pavers working for you, aside from assessing the area, they calculate how much material they will need during site visits. They also have enough extra material they can use in emergencies and whatnot.

You can try to overestimate the number of materials you will need in case of emergencies. However, the problem is determining what you will do with the extra material you don’t require anymore afterwards.

 

Conclusion

Porous paving is a paving option that is beneficial for you and the environment in the short term and the long run. But you will only experience these advantages if the pavers are installed correctly.

It is possible to place a permeable driveway by yourself. But there are many pitfalls that people can easily encounter that can have devastating results. Save yourself from the pain and heartache of trying to install a driveway with permeable paving. Hire a professional contractor instead.

If you’re looking for an experienced porous paving contractor in Sydney, StoneSet has got you covered. From driveways and pathways to patios and footpaths, our professional and knowledgeable team can handle it all. Contact us today for a free quote!

Invite Your Customers to Linger with StoneSet

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