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Hardscape Education

Answers from your hardscape experts
at United Hardscapes

You don’t have to be an expert to know what you want, but it helps to have access to United Hardscapes experts to help you along the way.

Here is a list of our most frequently asked questions to help you navigate your project.

If you still have a hardscape question, simply submit your question below and we will get it answered within 24 hours.

Background

Pavers

Walkways

Patios

Fire Pits

Sitting Walls

Pool Patios

Paver Driveways

Retaining Walls

Outdoor Kitchens

Landscaping

Hardscape Education

Pavers

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Are pavers better than poured or stamped concrete?

Yes, for outdoor living areas including pool patios, pavers are 10x better than concrete or stamped concrete, particularly if you use the newest generation pavers. Visit our pavers vs concrete section to learn more

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Do I have to worry about weeds coming up through my pavers?

No, pavers done with a proper base, proper bedding and installed with a high end polymeric sand will never have weeds coming through the pavers. At United Hardscapes, we use only the highest quality materials to ensure that you enjoy your project for many years to come. If you have weeds growing through your pavers, please contact us to talk about how we can install a new patio or driveway.

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Why do some old walkways and patios seem to have weeds or ants with them?

A Lot has changed over the years with the installation process of pavers including the base material and fill materials. Most of these old projects don’t have the right foundation or the right sand and sand filling the joints, allowing weeds to grow. Today's processes have been updated to prevent this.

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Do pavers crack?

Very rarely, If a paver were to crack for some reason it is very easy to switch out and replace without even noticing.

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Are there cleaners for pavers?

Yes there are a variety of paver safe cleaners on the market, we recommend (Techni-seal)brand cleaners.

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Can I power wash pavers?

Yes you can power wash pavers if you choose to. We advise you to be mindful of the polymeric sand and if you remove too much poly sand you should re-apply as soon as possible.

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What are pavers?

Pavers are a pressurized concrete block that is nearly 3x as strong as poured concrete, pavers come in all shapes, sizes and colors.

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Can pavers be used in driveways?

Yes, Pavers are a great option for driveways even in areas where it's cold and there is snow. We have installed many beautiful paver driveways. Whether your home is old or new, a paver driveway is a great home updating project that adds value and attractiveness to your property.

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Why do some of my new pavers have white spots?

These white spots are called effolesance, this is actually in the concrete block when its made, over the first 6 months of the new paver installation you may see this wash out of the concrete block, it's perfectly normal and naturally washes away with weather. There is also a cleaner on the market that will help speed up the process. On average it dissipates within about 30 days from installation, depending on the weather.

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Does the water run off or through pavers?

Most pavers are non-permeable, meaning the water will run off them. We also offer permeable pavers as an option. With these pavers, waterwill run through the cracks and into the base or drainage system.

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Can my gutter run onto my pavers?

Yes it can, as long as there is proper slope away from the house and you don’t mind a bit more maintenance of maintaining polymeric sand in that area. However, we suggest installing the gutters under the walkway and into a dry well or exit to daylight. Other options are available if you have a flower bed between your paver patio and gutter.

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Do I need to seal my new pavers?

No, in fact we discourage sealing new pavers since it's just not needed and adds future maintenance.

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Do my pavers change color when they are wet?

While your pavers don’t change color when they are wet, they may have a different shade or look more vibrant when wet. They will return to their original color when they dry. It's best to choose colors of pavers when they are dry since that's the way you will see your patio the most.

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Are pavers more money than bluestone or natural stone?

No pavers are actually a less expensive better quality product than either of the other stones.

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Can I use snow melt on my pavers?

Yes, however there are some exceptions with certain products so be sure to ask your project consultant if you have any questions. It is recommended to use a concrete safe snow melt and if you are interested, we offer an optional heated paver solution.

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Can my old pavers be refurbished?

Yes, there are cleaners and sealers on the market that help to color boast old pavers back to life.

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What happens if a repair is needed with my pavers?

With pavers any type of repair is simple, because all the pieces are individually put together its easy to pick up a section and either repair or switch out with little to no obvious fix. You can’t say this about stamped concrete.

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Are there a difference in paver qualities?

Yes, though it may seem like minor things from the outside looking in, with our experience we know what to look for and the difference between pavers that last the long term and don’t. Your project consultant will help educate you on the differences during your site visit.

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Do my pavers get hot in the sun?

When it's summer and the sun is blaring down, things can get a little toasty but it's by no means unbearable. Most of our clients are able to walk barefoot on their paver patios with no issues. Especially when compared to Bluestone, Bluestone gets extremely hot during the summer sun.

Walkways

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How wide should my walkway be?

The average walkway is 4’ wide this is pretty standard with all houses, however larger houses or customers who are looking for a more grand entrance will choose to do a 5’ wide walkway. Occasionally we can do smaller width walkways, but due to the core pavers/ border combo its important to make sure you have enough width in the field so that the walkway looks right. Your project consultant can explain in more detail and show you examples.

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Should I do my walkway or driveway first?

We highly recommend doing the walkway before the driveway, It's not only important to keep your new driveway “Clean” but also structurally walkways are strong when the asphalt is “Bonded” to the new walkway vs us cutting a new driveway and going up to it.

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Should I do a border on my walkway?

Yes we recommended doing a border along the walkway, it helps to outline the walkway, secure the cuts and provides a clean look that leads to the final destination. Many walkways will even include a double border. Click here to see more examples of walkways with borders

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Will my sprinklers near the walkway have to be moved?

This is project dependent, however if there are sprinklers right next to the walkway, yes they should be removed and “Moved/adjusted” by the sprinkler company after the project is complete.

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What size pavers should I use in my walkway?

Just because your doing a walkway does not mean you are limited on your paver choices; we have designed many walkway projects using many size pavers and borders creating unique entrances for every situation.

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How wide do you have to dig for a walkway?

We take pride in our installation process and the long term durability, but in order to ensure this we need to make sure there is a proper amount of base, even though your walkway may only be 4’ wide we plan a minimum of 8” to 12” of extra base on the sides for structural integrity of the walkway. With this extra base you should plan for your total dig area to be aprox 6’ wide on an average 4’ wide walkway.

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Can you put conduit under my walkway for a future lamp post?

Yes, if you need any conduit under the walkway whether for power, sprinklers or anything else, just bring this up to your project consultant during the site visit and we will ensure its added to the project ticket.

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How long does it take to do a walkway?

This will vary on project specifics, however most walkways are completed in 1 to 3 days.

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I have ugly concrete stairs. What can you do with these?

There are many options when it comes to stairs next to a walkway, options will vary drastically in price and not all options are available for every project.

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I want to re-do my entire front including plants, Can you remove my existing landscape?

Yes, please mention this idea to your project consultant during the site visit and we can plan to prep your entire front so that you're ready to go once the walkway is complete.

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Can I walk on my walkway once its complete?

Yes unlike concrete where it has to dry, pavers are ready to walk on as soon as the project is complete.

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Can I use a snowblower on my walkway?

Yes, most pavers are snowblower safe and are easy to shovel.

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Will my paver walkway be slippery like bricks?

No, unlike bricks pavers do not hold as much moisture and provide more textures making them much less slippery than a traditional brick or natural stone product.

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What design options do you recommend for my walkway?

Though each project is different, a common practice we recommend in walkways is to have a “Fan” open to the driveway, typically 2 feet wider than the walkway, then a “Fan” open to the steps creating a landing area of the bottom of the steps.

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My walkway puddles now, will the new walkway puddle?

No, your new walkway will not puddle. Most old walkways that puddle, puddle because they are sloped the wrong way, they sit too low compared to the grass or there are simply low spots in the walkway. All of this will be corrected with your new walkway installation.

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My walkway is on a slope, what can I do?

You have a couple options when your walkway is on a slope, depending upon your end goal, we can either add steps into the walkway creating a “landing” area in between steps that eventually leads to the top of the hill. This is usually the most practical solution and provides the best estetic. However, not everyone likes steps. In this case we could “Ramp” the walkway depending upon the slope we would recommend the best pavers for this and design a solution that works.

Patios

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How long is the initial site visit on a patio project?

We asked customers to set aside 30min to 60min for an initial site visit This will give us plenty of time to discuss the project, answer any questions you may have and allow us time to properly document the project description.

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What's the average size patio?

Though we get this questions a lot there is no “Right” answer, patio size is designed around what you want to do with it, someone who is looking for a simple patio, fire pit area and bistro table hangout may only need a 300sq foot patio, while a customer who is looking to entertain an entire family and who wants to create a truly outdoor living area may be in the area of 1,000+ square feet. Your project consultant will be able to suggest some sizes based on your yard, house and ultimate goals. On average most customers end up with a patio between 500 and 1,000sq ft.

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What size pavers do you recommend for a patio?

We would suggest a larger block paver for patios, the industry as a whole is transitioning to this larger block look, and the overall estic of larger blocks reduce the number of lines in the patio, reduces the need for poly sand maintenance and provides an overall cleaner look for large patios.

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Can I have a double or triple border around my patio?

Yes, because patio areas are wider its possible to have multiple borders, our most popular border option in patios is to include a “Double” border, this usually includes an “inlay” accent color along with a smaller outside border in the same matching color as the core patio. This look really makes a patio pop. Your project consultant will recommend options for your patio based on your surroundings and house colors.

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Can I mix colors within my patio?

Yes you can mix colors within the core design, we have done projects where customers have chosen to mix all sorts of colors to create their own “look”

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Should I bring the pavers up to the house or keep a landscape bed?

This really falls under personal preference, however there are pros and cons to each. When bringing pavers all the way up to the foundation you create a maintenance free area and depending upon your yard this could be valuable extra patio space. However in an area where you have more room, it's best to keep the patio away from the house since it's unlikely people will “Sit” next to the house and this is a waste of patio space. Instead this area turned into a landscape bed will help hide any imperfections in the foundation and allow you to either save money or take that space and expand the patio outward where the space will be utilized better.

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My patio is near my septic, is that a problem?

No, typically we are able to work right near septic areas in some cases we are even able to work over septic areas. This is project dependent but ask your project consultant is you have any concerns.

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Do I need a permit for my patio?

In most towns and cities you do NOT need a permit for paver patio construction, however your local project consultant will advise you of anything local permits if needed.

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Do you pull the permits if a permit is needed?

No, United Hardscapes does not pull permits for customers, however we provide all the details, site plan and documents required for a customer to easily pull a permit if needed.

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Do patios increase the value of my property?

Yes, a well designed and purposeful patio will add value to your property and years of enjoyment to your friends and family. Though patios and most hardscape will add value to a property it typically will not add any additional taxes to the property.

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Can you help me design my patio?

Yes, our project consultants are trained on what to look for so that you have a patio that fits your needs and looks appealing.

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Can I add onto my patio in the future without it looking weird?

Yes, there are ways to add onto an existing patio without it looking weird, whether this involves utilizing the same pavers or designing a new extension United Hardscapes will find a way to ensure your patio extension looks like it was planned all along.

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Do you remove decks or concrete that are in the way of where I want to put a patio?

Yes, our crews our trained on how to properly remove decks and cut out concrete so that your new patio can be installed nearly anywhere.

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Can you help me design landscaping around my new patio?

Yes, all of our 3D designs comes with a “Landscape” options showing you what your patio could look like fully landscaped.

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My patio will need steps out the back door, what are my options?

Your project consultant will have an opinion on your step options based on the site visit and your unique situation. However, most customers will choose a solid granite step/landing option for their back steps since this is the most durable long lasting type of steps for patio areas. For a more cost effective option, its suggested to coordinate with a carpenter after the patio is complete and install a set of Trex/Azek type steps that would land right on top of the patio.

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Will rodents like chipmunks ruin my patio?

No, As long as the proper base and sub soil is prepared correctly you will not have to worry about rodents undermining you new patio.

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The area where I want my patio is way out of level, what are my options?

Your project consultant would have the final say here with suggestions, however the two most common solutions are to either add a retaining wall that can either be cut into a hill or can be used to build up to support your new patio. Secondly if there is room, it's possible to grade around your patio and utilize landscaping to cover up the slope, this tends to be a more cost effective way to take care of hills.

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Should I elevate my patio or keep it ground level?

This is a personal preference when it comes to the looks, we have done many patios that utilize a combination of elevations and steps to build into their backyard, and in some cases it really makes sense to build on multiple levels. The other side of this is that if it's not needed to add levels, then it may be an unnecessary cost, once you start to add raised areas and sections the const drastically increases and unless you have the room to really separate the level of your patio its suggested to keep your patio ground level and instead separate areas with designs instead of levels saving on cost and increasing your useable space.

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Can you go over my existing concrete patio?

Maybe. There are many things we look for before we commit to being able to go over existing concrete, some items include the condition/base of the existing concrete patio, the height clarence between the patio and your doors, and can everything drain the right way are just some of the many things we will need to know in order to determine if we can go over existing concrete. However, if everything checks out, yes we can go over existing concrete patios.

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Can you provide a 3D design of my patio?

Yes, we offer complimentary 3D designs on all of our hardscaping projects, Once you accept your proposal you could request a 3D design at that time, you will have two options, either you can look at materials first to get an idea of what you like and then we would build your design to your chosen materials or you can request your project consultant to put together a design for what they think would look best on your property.

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What are the most common elements to a patio?

Its most common for customers to add on a fire pit and sitting wall and even design to their patio, infact it’s so common we have a name for it, it's called our Entertainment Package. This package includes everything you need to entertain your family or friends.

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What happens if it rains during my patio installation?

No need to worry, rain does not harm your patio installation, in fact a little water is even better for compaction. If however the weather is a total washout, your project consultant will reach out to you to let you know the crew won't be arriving that day and they will resume the following day weather permitting.

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What happens if the patio was too wet to spread poly sand?

In order to install polymeric sand properly the pavers should be mostly dry, if it was raining out the day your project was completed or if the pavers were simply still too wet to sand, then the crew will finish up your project and schedule a day in the future to come back and poly sand when the project has dried.

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Can I walk on my patio even though it has not been sanded?

Yes you can walkway on the patio, however without the poly sand or compaction to finish off the project you may notice some of the pavers “loose” or “slightly uneven” All of this is corrected during the last step of packing and sanding.

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How long does it take you to sand the patio and do I have to be home when you complete it?

Typically packing and sanding will take less than 30min to complete and no, you do not have to be home for this to happen.

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Do you recommend seed, hydro seed or sod after my project is completed?

This is a question really based on budget and desire. All three of these options are viable to get new grass after a construction project, however cost is a large factor. Traditional grass seed is the least expensive route but is the slowest to grow and take hold, while sod is the best option, but most expensive. Hydro see is a good middle ground for many folks since the yard is raked and prepped already and needs to just be blasted. Since every job is unique in the amount of “disturbded” yard it's best to ask your project consultant what they recommend and get an estimate on whatever option suits your needs the best.

Fire Pits

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What type of fire pits do you offer/recommend?

There are three types of fire pits that are most common with paver patios, the first is the traditional stone/block fire pit that is most commonly used and is a standard 48” wide and typically matches the patio. These are great for wood burning and are economical in cost.

The second type of firepit is similar to the above but is would “Gas” instead of wood burning, its nice to be able to turn on a fire pit and run it directly off your house gas/propane line, however there is an extreme price increase between these first two options, when you go with a hard line like this to the fire pit, you need to get the town involved with permits, the gas company would have to install and connect the burner up and the accessories needed for the installation tend to add aprox $3,000 to $3,500 to the project cost, for most people this is quite a bit for a fire pit.

The third option that has been gaining popularity is the Elegant propane fire pits, these are typically square, larger fire pits that have a propane tank inside them (hidden) these fire pits are usually portable but still are heavy duty and won't blow away or fall apart.

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What shape fire pits do you offer?

We offer both square and round firepits, fire pits patio design and optional sitting wall design should be considered when choosing the fire pit style, your project consultant will explain more during the site visit.

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Do you install/build fireplaces or pizza ovens?

Yes, we build and install both, however these items are very customizable. We offer very simplified “kit versions” all the way through to custom build mason masterpieces. Ask your project consultant to help you design what's best for your backyard.

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Can I have a natural stone fire pit instead of a block fire pit?

Yes, these are custom made and can be matched to existing stone on a house or chimney. These items are not included in standard fire pit pricing and would be custom quoted.

Sitting Walls

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What's the standard height of a sitting wall?

21” tall this includes a cap and 6 layers of 3” retaining wall block.

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What's the average length of a sitting wall?

The average sitting wall is about 12 linear feet. This fits 4 to 5 adults comfortably and still allows for 3 to 4 chairs in front of the fire pit.

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Should I do a corner or round sitting wall?

It depends on the layout of the patio and what looks best for your property. Both “L” shape and curved work well and seat the same amount of adults, however we would recommend a matching shape fire pit.

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How wide is the cap on the sitting wall?

A standard wall cap is between 12” and 14” wide. However, if you are looking for a thicker wall or cap, there are ways to custom build sitting walls that can meet your desired goal.

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Can you mix colors in a sitting wall?

Yes the most common way we mix colors is by getting your wall to match your patio by installing an “inlay” stripe, this inalay typically matches your border paver and is usually a darker color so that it stands out.

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Are the caps on the wall secured?

Yes, all the caps and smaller split pieces of your wall are glued together with a special hardscape bond.

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How far should my sitting wall be from my fire pit?

On average, your sitting wall should be 3’-4’ from the fire pit. This gives you plenty of room to walk between the wall and fire pit and sit without burning your knees or being too far from the fire.

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Do you do hardscape lighting?

Yes, but we only do hardscape and landscape lighting on our new construction projects. We don’t do lighting on others projects or outside of hardscaping.

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What does pre-wired mean?

With all of our walls we offer the option to have them pre-wired, this means we actually run wire for future lights in your wall, we space them out appropriately, and we leave the caps unglued there so there is easy access to add lights down the road?

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Why do you leave walls pre-wired?

Many times if we are not doing the hardscape lighting, customers will decide they want to do it on their own to save some money or possibly down the road there is potential for lights, it's much easier to do all of the pre-wiring during construction, the wires are mostly hidden and if you choose to never do lights there will be no structural effect on the wall by having it pre-wired.

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Do I have to have my wall pre wired for lights?

No, sometimes you already know you will never have lights in the wall, for one reason or another we simply will make a note on the project ticket and your wall will be excluded from wiring.

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Can you build a “Back” onto the sitting wall?

Yes, this is known as a hardscape couch. A hardscape couch is more expensive than a regular sitting wall, but a well-built hardscape couch is a great showpiece on any larger patio.

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Can I add pillars to my sitting wall?

Yes, your project consultant can provide you with a quote to add pillars to the ends of your sitting wall to complete the look - each pillar is 2’ wide, x 2’ deep and 36” tall and comes with a large cap stone. Pillars can also be pre wired for lighting or we can place conduit underneath for future high voltage lighting.

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Can my sitting wall also be a retaining wall?

Yes, there are many instances where we design a sitting wall right into the hillside, utilizing the wall as both a sitting feature and retaining wall.

Pool Patios

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Do you take out concrete and replace existing pool patios?

Yes we do this all the time. Most concrete pool patios fail over time for various reasons and we remove the existing concrete and re-install pavers as a replacement.

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Does it cost extra to remove the concrete?

Yes there is a fee for cutting, removing and hauling out concrete. This price is region dependent and will be discussed by your project consultant.

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Should I replace my lines since the concrete is removed?

Yes, or at least have a professional pool company inspect the lines for any damage.The time to do this work is before the new pavers are put back down, ask us how we can help you coordinate this.

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Do I need to remove my fence around my pool?

This is project dependent but most of the time we can work within fences by only taking out select sections for entry. Each project is different, so your project consultant will determine the best entry points.

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When should I replace my pool liner?

Its preferred to wait until the construction around the pool is complete before replacing pool liners, however in certain cases we can accommodate new pool liners.

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I have concrete I want to go up to around my pool, is that a problem?

No, that's not a problem at all, in fact many customers have an existing concrete patio that we are able to go right up to and design it to look as if it was meant to be there from the start.

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How is my pool patio sloped?

Your pool patio will be sloped both away from your pool and away from your house. If needed, a drain could also be installed for situations where water can not go off the patio.

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Can I anchor my pool cover to the pavers?

No, anchor pool covers are attached to a metal rod that's installed the paver, not the paver itself. Your pool cover company will cover this with you when it's time to cover the pool.

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I am getting a new pool, can you help me figure out my patio design/cost?

Yes, even if the pool is not installed yet, we can help you figure out a rough design and costs for your project. We understand planning a new pool is a long process with many steps and we are here to help.

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Is there a way to save money with new pool patios?

Yes, if you are having a new pool installed we highly advise working together with the pool company so that we can coordinate digging, backfill and more so that you're not paying for the same job twice. Typically project coordination between our project consultant and your pool contractor will save you 20% on the patio installation.

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What's the average size pool patio?

On average pool patios are between 800 and 1500 square feet but each project can be customized for your backyard.

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How long should I wait to get my patio installed after the new pool?

We suggest waiting 3 to 4 months at minimum, but this varies based on the type of pool construction, weather and soil type. Your project consultant will give you a more detailed insight based on your specific project.

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Is there a better time of year for pool patio installation?

No, we do suggest planning ahead though, a pool patio project takes time from planning, designing and installing so be mindful of when you really want to use your pool and what its going to take to get there.

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Do you install Boulders around pools to help with grade/slope issues?

Yes, boulders are a great solution to help with new grade issues created by new pools.

Paver Driveways

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Can I plow or snow blow my power driveway?

Yes, your driveway can be designed with a paver that is both plowable and can be snow blown.

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Is my driveway safe with street salts?

Yes, we only recommend pavers that that can handle salt from the roadway.

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I have a drainage problem with my current driveway, can you help solve this with pavers?

Yes we could either install a driveway drainage system or install a permeable paver driveway.

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Are paver driveways more expensive than asphalt?

Yes, they are about 2.5x more expensive than an asphalt driveway. However, if you love the durability, curb appeal and satisfaction of having a paver driveway then you know this outweighs the cost.

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Can my paver driveway go right up to the street?

This is town dependent and would have to be checked by your local project consultant. Some towns and cities require a certain amount of feet to remain paved while others allow you to go right up to the street. Either way we can design it so it looks great in your front yard.

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Can my paver driveway hold heavy trucks without being damaged?

Of course! Your paver driveway is just as durable if not more durable than a traditional asphalt driveway.

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Is there a set type of driveway paver?

There are certain pavers we recommended over others when it comes to driveway installation, but your design options are plentiful.

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How long do I have to wait before I can drive on my paver driveway?

As soon as the project is complete, you will be able to use your driveway.

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Can I do a paver driveway extension up against my existing asphalt driveway?

Yes, these extensions for additional cars in the driveway are quite popular with families who have teenagers who just got a car.

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I have a large driveway, could I only do a part of my driveway in pavers?

Yes, people who have very large driveways usually don’t paver the entire driveway, instead they paver sections, like aprons near the street or by the garage or do only a parking area near the house and the rest of the driveway is asphalt or crushed stone. Either way, if you're interested in utilizing pavers in your next driveway your project consultant will be able to give you plenty of ideas.

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What if I get oil on my paver driveway?

There are cleaners specifically to remove oil from pavers. In a worst case situation, the affected pavers could simply be switched out and replaced in the stained area.

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Would a paver driveway be slippery?

No, pavers driveways are no more slippery than a regular driveway in rain or snow, and in some cases a textured driveway would be even more slip resistant than traditional asphalt.

Retaining Walls

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What type of retaining walls do you install?

We install retaining walls from the most popular retaining wall block as well as natural stone, veneering of concrete, and boulder walls.

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What walls are the most cost effective?

Depending on the situation, a boulder wall would be most cost effective, but is not always the most practical. The next and best walls for both strength, looks and cost would be a traditional “Segmental retaining wall” from Versa-lok or Techo-bloc.

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How high can I build a retaining wall without engineering?

Most towns/cities allow for the construction of a 4’ high wall, anything higher than this would require engineering drawings.

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Can I build two or more walls to avoid engineering costs?

Yes, as long as there is room and proper area for Geo-grid, then yes its possible to accomplish your taller wall while avoiding costly engineering costs. Your project consultant will go over all the details for your local town regulations.

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Can you install large mafia style blocks?

Yes, we work with a company called Redi-rock that supplies materials all over the country. These large faced mafia blocks are a great alternative for large scale wall projects.

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I live on a slope with a lot of water running off, can a wall fix my erosion problem?

Yes, retaining walls that are properly designed do just that. A solid wall system will catch water and funnel it around the wall and into a pre designed drainage system.

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I have an old wood/railroad tie wall, can you remove the old wall?

Yes, we remove old wood and railroad tie walls quite often. There is an additional dumpster fee for the removal of the old materials.

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I have an old block wall that's falling over. Can you fix it?

We don’t fix old walls in general because there are too many unknowns. If the wall is failing, there’s a good chance that it’s failing from the base or due to improper drainage. In order to fix this wall, we would only do the project if it was a complete tear down and re-install.

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Can my wall match my pavers?

Yes there are multiple colors and color combos available to match nearly every paver block on the market.

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Can you add onto my wall?

No, sorry, we do not do wall add ons.

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Do you install steps into your walls?

Yes we can install steps into any of our walls.

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What's the average step width within a retaining wall?

Typically, 4 or 5 foot steps are the most common.

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Can my wall step down as it properly steps down?

Yes, all of our walls are designed with your end goal in mind, whether that's to keep the wall level and bring up the grade or to step the wall down and tie it into the property we have seen it all.

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Will my wall have a drain pipe?

Yes all walls no matter the size of them will have proper drainage and a drain pipe that exits them to ensure proper pressure relief.

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Will I see an ugly 4” pipe coming out of my wall?

No, we use speciality designed reducers so that any drain holes are narrowed down to only a 1” opening that is built right into the wall design.

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How many drain pipe exits will my retaining wall have?

This depends on the length and type of wall you are installing but typically every 45’ there is a pressure relief exit.

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Can you install fill behind my wall to bring the property up to grade?

Yes as part of our retaining wall installation, we ensure walls are properly back filled and ready to use, whether for a yard extension or a flower bed.

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Will my retaining wall be stepped back or completely vertical?

We could build your wall either way, however it is strongly recommended that your retaining wall is built on a stepped backed pre-defined slope. This makes your retaining wall nearly 10x stronger than a straight vertical wall.

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What size wall block do most people choose?

This varies on the height of the wall, however most smaller decorative walls are either natural stone or 3” wall block. For larger structural retaining walls we recommend either a 6” or 8” block (6” being much more popular).

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Is there a cap on my wall?

Yes, all of our walls are installed with caps unless otherwise specified

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Can my capstone be different from my wall materials?

Yes caps can be the same, a different color or a different material like blue stone. However, most people stick within the same types of materials, such as wall blocks that have block caps and natural stone that has natural stone caps.

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Can my wall have an outlet built into it?

Yes, however this would need to be coordinated in advance with an electrician.

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Can you install wall lights under the caps?

Yes, please ask your Project Consultant how and where they would recommend lighting for your wall project.

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Is there a better time of the year to do retaining walls?

Yes, preferably during dryer times, avoiding the spring rains is usually best, however as long as the ground is not frozen or sloppy wet we can install walls.

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Will you be able to tell me how tall of a wall I’ll need?

Yes, Your project consultant will have the tools necessary to measure the height of the wall needed to complete your project.

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How many steps will I need in my wall?

The amount of steps needed in your wall is calculated by the total height of your wall. Steps are between 6’ and 8” per step depending upon the materials chosen.

Outdoor Kitchens

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Are outdoor kitchens built on top of my paver patio?

No, though it may look like they are built on top of pavers, due to the weight of the entire project it is highly recommended that outdoor kitchens are built on a reinforced concrete pad to ensure long term durability.

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Can you get a block to match my patio?

Yes there are two “looks” for outdoor kitchens and both will go with your patio. The first option is simply doing a “Block” outdoor kitchen, with your kitchen built using wall block from the same manufacturer of your pavers. We build the shell with the appropriate block giving the entire project a matching complete look.

The second and more popular option is to complete the outdoor kitchen with a complimentary natural stone veneer. We will install a matching or complimentary veneer for the shell of the kitchen and have a granite countertop installed to complete the project.

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How does the design process work?

We work with you to figure out exactly what you want in the outdoor kitchen (grill, cabinets, trash pit, counter space, etc) once we understand all your elements and designed size we then calculate the space needed to bring it all together and prepare a proposal for you to review with a price.

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Do you use stainless steel appliances?

Yes, all of the appliances and outdoor kitchen accessories we use are high end stainless steel built for tough weather environments and come with a warranty.

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I purchased the appliances myself, can you install everything?

Yes, your project consultant will verify you have everything needed (Including vents) and build a design, plan and quote around your purchased items.

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I just want a basic outdoor grilling area, what do you offer?

Many customers want the outdoor kitchen experience but may lack the room, budget or desire to have a large cooking area. For these situations, we offer our traditional series outdoor kitchen that includes the grill, cabinets, and granite counter space. This is an extremely affordable alternative to our custom built kitchens.

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Can you run both power and gas to my outdoor kitchen?

Yes, however as the hardscape contractor we can only do some of the work. We can run all of the appropriate conduit and coordinate running pipe/wire with proper certified/licensed installers, but the gas/electrical contractors are responsible for hooking everything up and testing it. They will also be responsible for any permits needed for power/gas installation.

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Can you work with my electrician or gas company?

Yes, even though we have a network of people we already work with that will get things done efficiently and on time, if you have a specific contractor you would like us to work with we will do our best to accommodate.

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Do you offer the concrete service for the outdoor kitchen?

Yes our pricing includes a concrete foundation.

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Who coordinates the plumber and electrician?

United Hardscapes will coordinate all the contractors needed to complete a project, however any permits that need to be obtained will be an additional charge and should be handled by the customer.

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Who coordinates the granite for the counter top?

United Hardscapes will coordinate the granite and installation with our network of expert contractors.

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Is there a showroom to see the granite countertops?

Yes, your project consultant can help you find a local showroom so you can see countertops up close before you buy.

Landscaping

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Do you do landscaping?

We do not offer basic landscaping services like mowing, snow plowing, weeding, trimming, leaves etc. However we do provide new landscape installation when we are onsite completing a hardscaping project as an option. This is considered Hardscape/Landscape Construction.

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Will you provide us with separate quotes for new plantings?

Yes, all of our projects are line itemed so your landscaping package will be quoted separately from the hardscaping quote.

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Can we have a plant list from your design and do the plantings after ourselves?

Yes, some customers like to save money this way or simply enjoy gardening their own property, we can definitely help by providing them everything needed to complete the project, even the plants and mulch, ask your project consultant how they can coordinate the entire process for you potentially saving you money.

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Do you recommend rock or mulch around my hardscape?

This depends on the landscape design and is usually a combination of materials

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Will you install stone or mulch around my new patio even without plants?

Yes, however this would have to be discussed in advance with the project consultant as it will alter project timing.

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Do you install grass seed when you finish a project?

We install and rake out topsoil and offer a hydroseed and sod service as a separate cost. Please talk to your Project Coordinator about this to ensure that it is included in your project discussions.

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Do you install landscape curbing?

Yes we do install curbing, this is a great option alongside walkways and around flower beds.

Ready to get started?

Now is the time to start planning your hardscape project and United Hardscapes
is the company to start planning it with

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