If you’re in the process of installing a pool, you’ve likely considered what the surrounding deck and patio areas will look like. However, unless you have an eye for landscaping, you probably haven’t reflected on whether to install pavers or concrete. While both have their advantages, the decision is up to you and you’ll have to be discerning to pick the best material for your pool.
Concrete is the most popular option for pools in the US because it is less expensive and isn’t likely to grow mold or mildew. Pavers, on the other hand, are safer than concrete because they provide more underfoot traction than a solid, smooth slab of concrete. And, pavers are also more aesthetically pleasing thanks to their uniquely patterned designs.
If you’re on the fence about which material to use, continue reading to learn more. This guide will cover everything you need to know about pavers and concrete, including their price, installation process, pros, cons, and general popularity. We may even have a solution that makes the most of both materials.
What Makes Concrete a Smart Option?
A concrete deck is a smooth, solid slab of concrete that surrounds your pool. Concrete is a popular choice for pool decks because it is inexpensive, durable, and easy to maintain. Plus, it can be poured into whatever shape or size you desire. However, if you choose a concrete pool deck, be sure to stamp or add a decorative finish to the surface to add interest and traction.
Decorative finishes can include anything from a brushed finish to exposed aggregate. Stamped concrete is textured to look like natural stone, brick, or other materials. It is a popular choice for pool decks because it is less slippery than a smooth concrete surface and can be customized to complement your home’s existing exterior.
What are the Downsides to a Concrete Pool Deck?
Although concrete is a durable material, it is not immune to cracking. Concrete can crack from age, weather, or ground movement. Cracks in your concrete pool deck can create trip hazards and allow water to seep into the cracks and cause further damage. Concrete pool decks also require more maintenance than paver pool decks because they are more susceptible to staining and can develop a rough surface over time.
What Makes Pavers a Smart Option?
A paver pool deck is made of individual pavers, which are usually made of brick, stone, or concrete. Pavers are available in a variety of colors, shapes, and sizes, so you can create a unique look for your pool deck. Pavers are also more slip-resistant and can be installed with a drainage system to prevent pooling water.
Paver pool decks are more expensive than concrete pool decks, but they are also more durable and require less maintenance. Pavers can last for decades with the proper care, while concrete may start to show signs of wear after 10 years. Pavers are also easier to repair than concrete because individual pavers can be replaced if they become damaged.
What are the Downsides to a Pool Deck Made of Pavers?
Other than their higher price tag, pavers are more prone to mold and mildew because water can seep into the joints between the pavers. Pavers can also settle over time, which can create trip hazards. And, if pavers are not installed properly, they can shift and become uneven, allowing weeds to colonize and grow between the pavers.
Which Material is Easier to Install?
If you’re worried about sticking to a timeline, you’re likely wondering which material is easier to install. The answer is concrete. Concrete can be poured and left to cure, while pavers must be individually placed and then sealed. However, if you’re worried about making mistakes during the installation process, you may want to hire a professional to install your pool deck.
How Much Would Each Option Cost?
Generally speaking, the initial price of a concrete pool deck is lower, costing between $10 and $14 per square foot, compared to $16 to $20 per square foot of pavers. However, concrete is more susceptible to cracking and staining, which can require repairs or replacement. Pavers are more durable and require less maintenance, so they may be a more cost-effective option in the long run.
Considering that the average American pool deck measures between 600 and 900 square feet, expect to pay around $6,000 to $9,000 for a concrete pool deck and $9,600 to $18,000 for a paver pool deck. These prices do not include the cost of installation, which can range from $2 to $5 per square foot for concrete and $5 to $10 per square foot for pavers.
To get a more accurate estimate of the cost of your pool deck, it’s best to consult with a local contractor. They can take a look at your yard and give you an estimate for the materials and installation.
Laying Pavers Over Concrete
If you’re worried about pavers settling or weeds growing between their cracks, you may want to consider laying pavers over concrete. This is a hybrid solution that can give you the best of both worlds. By pouring a concrete slab and then laying pavers over the top, you can create a durable, low-maintenance surface that will last for years.
This solution may be more expensive than installing either pavers or concrete on their own, but it can save you money in the long run by eliminating the need for repairs or replacements. Fair warning, though, if you go this route, first guarantee that the concrete slab is level and smooth before laying the pavers. Otherwise, the pavers may not lay evenly and could become cracked or damaged.
Installing a pool is a major investment, so you’ll want to choose the right materials for the job. Pavers and concrete are both popular choices, but they have their own advantages and disadvantages. If you’re still not sure which material to pick, it’s best to consult with a professional. They can help you weigh the pros and cons and choose the best option for your pool.