Wet Cast Pavers vs. Dry Cast Pavers

While the aesthetics of your concrete paver are an important part when selecting what will be best for your project, knowing how the paver is made is just as important. Ensuring the paver is suitable for the job will help the overall longevity of the projects lifetime. There are two type of concrete pavers: Wet Cast Pavers and Dry Cast Pavers.

What is the difference between Wet Cast Pavers and Dry Cast Pavers? 

The Process: As the name suggests, the concrete used in manufacturing wet cast pavers is typically quite liquid. This concrete mix is poured into a mold shaped for the paver and then vibrated to release air bubbles from the mix.Wet Cast Paver Mold

The curing process for wet cast pavers is much longer than that of a dry-cast, making it more labor intensive to produce. Once this concrete is cured, the mold is removed and the pavers are palletized and ready for shipping.

Dry Cast Pavers - Techo Athena
Dry Cast Pavers – Techo Athena

Dry cast, as it sounds, is a concrete mix with very little water. These are the pavers we typically think of when picturing a paver block. Dry cast paver mixes are similarly placed in a mold, but are then compressed with very high pressure, complex machinery. The compressed molds are cured on racks before being palletized.  Because these pavers are air-cured they can be produced quickly and affordably.

Color & Finish: Wet cast pavers often feature more bold color tones, smoother and more intricate surfaces, and can better imitate natural stone. While dry cast have historically been more simple and basic in color and texture, modern manufacturing has made color blends and surface textures more desirable.

Wet Cast Paver - Techo Block Aberdeen
Wet Cast Paver – Techo Bloc Aberdeen
Dry Cast Pavers
Dry Cast Pavers – Techo Allegro

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Strength: Both wet cast and dry cast pavers are suitable for residential projects such as driveways, walkways, and patios. When considering a paver for a large-scale commercial project, dry cast is a more suitable choice. Dry cast pavers have a more optimal water to cement ratio making them incredibly strong and high strength, perfect for the load capacity of a road or highway.

Dry Cast Pavers Driveway
Dry Cast Pavers in Driveway – Techo Blu 80
Wet cast pavers
Wet Cast Pavers – Techo Inca

 

Protection & Maintenance: Once you decide which paver suits your project best, you want to protect it from the elements, especially during the winter months here in New England. Dry cast and wet cast pavers should both be sealed to prevent possible staining, chemical deterioration from any acids or salts, and color fading from use over time.  We offer a variety of sealers for pavers such. Alliance Low Gloss Sealer adds a mild sheen and is to be used only on dry cast pavers only. Our best seller, Prosoco’s Siloxane PD is a clear, no-gloss sealer that can be applied to wet or dry cast pavers.

To further protect your new investment, it is recommended to use an ice melt that is safe for hardscape and masonry. Mr. Magic Premium Ice Melt is engineered to safely breakdown the ice without breaking down your pavers.

Summary: Wet cast pavers offer more variety in color and finish, and they also typically cost a bit more and are generally less durable. Dry cast pavers are typically very standard in color but have high strength and are more economical, ultimately making them the more popular option. Here at TLC Supply we offer a multitude of both dry cast and wet cast items from leading paver manufacturer’s Techo Bloc, Genest, and Belgard.

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The experts at TLC Supply are happy to answer any of your project questions, just give us a shout! Leave your questions or comments below. 

 “Best Price, Best Advice” -TLC Supply,Inc.

                                                                                                                                              -GA

G2 Intelligent Polymeric Super Sand

G2 Polymeric Sand Promo

G2 Intelligent Polymeric Sand by Alliance is manufactured by mixing specifically calibrated sand with sophisticated intelligent polymers, which neutralize haze and dust. The end result: a second generation of polymeric sand unlike anything you’ve ever seen before.Alliance G2 Polymeric Sand Logo

  • No Dust
  • Haze Free
  • No Blower Required
  • One Watering

G2 Polymeric Sand simplifies the installation process. Sweeping is all it takes to completely remove the particles from the surface, thus eliminating the additional step of using a blower. And with its uniform composition, water is able to penetrate deeper through the G2 Polymeric Sand. This activates all of the intelligent polymers more evenly to form a stronger, more consistent bond, which only requires only one watering.

How To Use G2 Polymeric Sand in 4 Easy Steps

Step 1: Spread

Spread the G2 polymeric sand into the paver joints with a stiff bristle broom. Make sure the polymeric sand fills the joints completely. G2 Polymeric Sand Application

Tip: DO NOT USE OTHER MATERIAL IN THE JOINTS. Doing so will cause the polymeric sand to fail.

Step 2: Compac

Vibrate the G2 sand into the paver joints using a vibratory plate compactor. A rubber pad is recommended. A roller compactor is best for slab installation. Joints should be filled up to 3mm (1/8 in.) below the edge or chamfer. It is best to compact in several directions to ensure there are no air gaps or voids in the joints. Repeat steps 1 and 2 to ensure joints are filled and consolidated. Narrow joints require more care to completely fill.

Step 3: Clean 

Using a stiff-bristle broom, remove any excess G2 sand from paver surfaces. Do the same with a soft-bristle broom. Make sure the finished sand level is at least 1/8 in. (3mm) lower than the chamfer of the pavers.

Tip: Make sure the paver’s side and top surfaces are dry before applying the polymeric sand! The polymeric sand will harden if it is moistened and will adhere to the surface of the paver.

G2 Polymeric SandStep 4: Mist

Once you have removed the polymeric sand from the surface of the pavers you can lightly mist the pavers and joints with a hose. Do this at a height of about 4 feet. Mist the area for about 1 minute starting at the lowest point.

.Visit our website www.tlcsupply.com to view all Alliance products we carry and much more.

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Before you go check this out! You may even like our post on The Best Polymeric Sand To Use or How to Build a Paver Patio!

We are happy to answer any of your project questions, just give us a shout! Leave your comments below. 

 “Best Price, Best Advice” -TLC Supply,Inc.

5 Tips To Prep Your Paver Patio For Spring

5 Tips To Prep Your Paver Patio For Spring

timthumb

#1 Check for Repairs – Once the snow and ice has melted take the time to to check all over your patio for any broken pavers, unevenness, or joints that need to be refilled. The benefit of pavers is that they are all individual pieces so removing and replacing them is a cinch.

Tip: Wet the polymeric sand around the paver that needs repair to soften it. Then use a screw driver or putty knife to dig through the polymeric sand and remove the paver. Sprinkle a little stone dust or concrete sand in the void and tamp down, replace with a new paver and refill the joint with polymeric sand.


#2 Spring Cleaning
– When you have finished making any necessary repairs its time to give your patio a good spring cleaning. TLC Supply sells quality paver detergents to tackle stubborn dirt or moss.paver-cleaner

Tip: Wet your patio and use a diluted mixture of water and detergent with a stiff bristled broom to scrub the pavers and rinse. For more stubborn areas use a pressure washer with a gentle setting.

#3 Consider Sealing – If you are considering sealing your paver patio now is the perfect time to do it. Applying sealer to clean and dry pavers will ensure a better bond between the sealant and the surface of the stone. TLC Supply sells breathable siloxane/silane sealers that will help protect pavers from dirt and minor staining.

Tip: Pavers usually need to be re-sealed every 3-5 years. If you are re-sealing it is important to use the same sealer as originally applied. Different sealers have different formulations and it is critical that the new coat dissolve the original coat in order to bond together properly. If you apply a different sealer you may not get this bond or worse you may have a chemical reaction that could turn the sealant milky. If you are unsure of the sealer previously used it is best to do a small test patch in an obscure area to see how the sealers will react.

#4 Freshen Up Your Landscape – A patio isn’t complete without fresh colorful plants and vegetation! We know it’s no fun but it is important to get rid of those unsightly weeds and remove dead branches from shrubs and trees to make room for new growth. Granite-Cobble-Stone-Edge

Make a homemade concoction of water, vinegar, and dish detergent to create an environmentally friendly weed killer.

Tip: If you’re looking to spruce things up come down to TLC Supply and check out how to enhance your garden beds with granite cobblestone edging or build a beautiful retaining wall planter.

#5 Create Some Entertainment – The sun is staying out longer and so should you! Installing a fire pit is an easy way to warm up those brisk spring evenings. Surround your fire pit with outdoor furniture to create a gathering spot that everyone will enjoy.

techo-bloc-valencia-fire-pitTip: TLC Supply has several easy to assemble fire pits that come in an array of colors to match any landscape surround.

You can also make the most out of Spring with fun outdoor games. Visit our Pinterest page for DIY projects and entertaining ideas.

How Failing To Compact Will Ruin Your Paver Project

If you have read some of our other blog posts, you know we’re huge advocates of “do it once and do it right.” This is because we have seen too many jobs go awry due to a step being missed during the paver installation process. This critical step is compacting the base. A proper compact will help maintain your project’s integrity,protect jointing material, and keep your outdoor patio or walkway looking sharp for a long time.

Techo Bloc Blu 80 Smooth Compact Base


Interlocking pavers
are made to be flexible, meaning that they will move, mold and mimic to any settling or shifts in the soil or base. If they are installed over  an improperly compacted sub-base  they are not going to stand the test of time.

Not to mention there are other variables that can exacerbate the issue of paver settling and moving on an improperly compacted base,

  • Weather: Freeze/thaw cycles can wreak havoc on a paver installation that was improperly compacted. Each void within the sub-base serves as a place for water to potentially settle. When this water freezes it will expand and cause the pavers to heave; when it thaws, the pavers will settle (but likely not evenly), eventually creating an uneven surface.
  • Car on paver drivewayTraffic: Driveway pavers that sit on top of poorly compacted areas will shift and compress over time. The weight of a vehicle will depress pavers into the weak spots, resulting in unattractive (and potentially dangerous) ruts and grooves on the surface.
  • Joint Failure: While polymeric sand is designed to be self-healing and flexible, it will not perform as intended if it’s installed on an improperly compacted job. Radical shifting and movement of the pavers will eventually cause paver joints to crack and fail over time.

Uneven Pavers from improper compact base

 

As you can see the resulting compression and shifting of the pavers on an awfully compacted base will quickly lead to problems … many of which can lead to redoing the whole entire thing. So do it right the first time to avoid costly repairs in the long run.

 

 

Compact Base with Plate CompactorQuick Tips To Ensure Proper Base Compaction:

  • Have the proper base depth. The guidelines are to dig about 4 to 6 inches for pedestrian walks or patios and 8 to 12 inches for driveways.
  • Use the correct base material. It is recommended to use a granular course stone        0-3 ⁄4″, otherwise known as “dense grade” for the base and to use concrete sand as the setting bed.
  • Don’t compact material all at once. Most  plate compactors will not compact any more than 4” of base. If you try to compact 6” of base, you will only compact the top 4” and the bottom 2” will settle. It is best to compact your base in lifts of 3″ – 4″.

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You can find dense grade, concrete sand, premium pavers, polymeric sand, and all the necessary materials needed to build a successful patio, walkway, or driveway at TLC Supply in Quincy, MA. Please visit our website to see even more hardscape and masonry products!

The experts at TLC Supply are happy to answer any of your project questions, just leave your questions in the comments below!

 “Best Price, Best Advice” -TLC Supply,Inc.

2017 Techo-Bloc Contractor Showcase Massachusetts

Techo Bloc 2017 Contractor Showcase Massachusetts

Don’t forget to sign up for the 2017 Techo-Bloc Contractor Showcase!

2017 Techo-Bloc Contractor Showcase Massachusetts

The seminar will be led by Pete “Paver Pete” Baloglou, director of sales, education and information at Techo-Bloc, and will cover everything from new products, installation methods, and best practices. Plus you will have the chance to network and strategize with colleagues, vendors, and suppliers.

Massachusetts Seminar Dates:

  • Feb 17 Hyannis
  • March 07 Westborough

The complete list of Contractor Showcase dates is viewable online at techo-bloc.com, where it also is free to register.

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TLC Supply in Quincy, Massachusetts is your #1 Techo-Bloc authorized dealer! We have an extensive Techo Bloc inventory and a large outdoor patio display featuring Techo-Bloc’s premium paving stones and walls. Please visit our website to see even more hardscape and masonry products ranging from bluestone,granite,brick,natural stone,block,sand,cement, and much more!

 

The experts at TLC Supply are happy to answer any of your project questions, just give us a shout! Send us an email to info@tlcsupply.com or leave your comments below. 

 “Best Price, Best Advice” -TLC Supply,Inc.

 

Easy Garden Path Ideas

Happy Earth Day! What better way is there to enjoy mother nature than by strolling through a beautiful garden path?

A well designed garden path can create an inviting atmosphere for you and your guests, plus it can enhance the functionality of your garden.

gardenpath

There are numerous ways you can create a alluring and fun garden path, you just need to think outside the box! A path that curves and disappears around a corner draws attention to what lies beyond. A straight, narrow path can make a garden appear longer, especially if the end point is hidden. We’ve collected some of our favorite garden path ideas to help inspire your design.

Idea #1. Elegant Entry with Techo Bloc’s Maya Stepping Stone


Garden Path Techo Bloc Maya Step

Techo Bloc’s Maya stone slab is an excellent way to enhance your garden path. These slabs come in 4 different earth tone colors to mimic the natural beauty of real stone.

Idea #2. Broken Beauty

Garden Path Irregular Bluestone

Irregular Bluestone slabs give off a rustic look. The irregularity and sharp edges of the stone will contrast nicely with the delicate softness of your flower surround.

Idea #3. Clean Lines

Garden Path Granite StoneGarden Path Granite Stone and Pebbles

Lay granite or bluestone pattern stock in crushed stone to create a minimalist garden path with clean lines.  You may opt to surround the granite with black Mexican beach pebbles to give a striking contrast.

Idea #4. Playing with Texture

Garden Path Crushed Stone

To expand on Idea #3, try creating landings out of bluestone or granite pattern and alternate with crushed stone. These varying layers of texture and rectangular forms will create visual appeal.

Idea #5. Staggered Lines

Garden Path Staggered Garden Path Staggered

Instead of laying stone in a straight line, mix it up by staggering 12″ x 36″ stone planks. The alternating stones draws the eye from side to side and creates an elongated appearance.

Idea #6. Geometric Intrigue

Garden Path Brick

Garden Path Brick

There are many versatile ways to lay brick and one option for your garden path is to make basket weave squares. Brick is timeless and it’ll add charm to your garden.

Another option is to surround a 12″ x 12″ bluestone square to create colorful garden steppers.

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Let us know which garden path design was your favorite in the comments below!

You can find all these materials at TLC Supply in Quincy, MA. Please visit our website to see even more hardscape and masonry products ranging from bluestone,granite,brick,natural stone,block,sand,cement, and much more!

Before you go, be sure to check out last year’s Earth Day post on Permeable Pavers.

The experts at TLC Supply are happy to answer any of your project questions, just give us a shout! 

 “Best Price, Best Advice” -TLC Supply,Inc.

Using Porcelain Outdoors

Porcelain Pavers

Versatile. Durable. Stunning.

With a new year comes positive change and new trends! With that said one outdoor trend that is gaining traction is the use of porcelain pavers or “slabs” for patios, pool decks, walkways, and driveways.

If you don’t already know, patios are becoming increasingly popular and it’s very easy to see why. Home additions such as outdoor living spaces can bring a lot of benefits to homeowners such as more quality bonding time with family and friends and of course the added increase in home value. The versatility, durability, and aesthetic beauty of porcelain is a definite trend to keep in mind when designing your patio.

High Performance

Mirage Outdoor Porcelain Tile Porcelain Pavers

Porcelain slabs are excellent in terms of strength, resistance, reliability, and safety. They can withstand incredibly high breakage loads (up to 2,000 lbs) and can be placed virtually anywhere – dry laid on grass, gravel, dirt and sand or onto terraces and roofs.

Additional Benefits of Outdoor Porcelain:

  • Frost resistant
  • Acid resistant
  • Stain resistant
  • Scratch proof
  • Durable
  • Responds well to changes in temperature and inclement weather
  • Colors will not fade
  • Moss or mildew resistant
  • Easy to maintain and clean
  • Easy to work with
  • Environmentally friendly

Unparalleled Beauty

Porcelain comes in a variety of attractive finishes, harmonious colors, sizes, and thicknesses.  You can choose from a wood grain mimic to something with more profound nuances or intricate veining details, or select a piece that is simple and minimalistic. Each slab is unique and will compliment any landscape pallet.

Belgaard Hardscapes - Ardesie Porcelain Tile by Mirage Porcelain Pavers
Belgard Hardscapes – Ardesie Mirage Porcelain Tile
Belgaard Hardscapes - Na.Me Porcelain Tile by Mirage Porcelain Pavers
Belgard Hardscapes – Na.Me Mirage Porcelain Tile
Belgaard Hardscapes - Quarziti 2.0 Porcelain Tile by Mirage Porcelain Pavers
Belgard Hardscapes – Quarziti 2.0 Mirage Porcelain Tile
Belgaard Hardscapes - Sundeck Porcelain Tile by Mirage Porcelain Pavers
Belgard Hardscapes – Sundeck Mirage Porcelain Tile

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If you would like to explore the idea of using porcelain slabs for your patio please visit TLC Supply, Inc.

If you liked this page be sure to share it with all your friends! And for even more inspiring paver patios as well as backyard DIY projects and outdoor entertaining ideas follow us on Pinterest!

Before you go check this out! You may even like our post 10 Unique Hardscape Ideas!

We are happy to answer any of your project questions, just give us a shout! Send us an email to info@tlcsupply.com or leave your comments below. 

 “Best Price, Best Advice” -TLC Supply, Inc.

Ice Melt Safe For Pavers & Stone|Mr. Magic Premium Ice Melt

Mr.Magic Premium Ice Melt

Mr. Magic Premium Ice Melt

 Our #1 Recommendation for Protecting your Hardscape and Masonry During the Winter Season.

Mr. Magic Premium Ice Melt, Mr. Magic

Your hardscape project is a big investment so it is important to protect it all year round. Failure to do so during the winter season can result in some serious problems. For example,

  • Water can freeze leaving an ice cover on the patio for anyone to slip and fall on.
  •  Freeze and thaw cycles can crack pavers and stone. As the ice and snow melts it becomes salt water that seeps down through tiny crevices in the stones surface and freezes. When the water freezes it expands and forces the crevice to become larger leading to cracks and spalling.
  • Using the wrong blend of ice melt can contain harmful chemical compounds that can deteriorate stone and concrete surfaces.

Our #1 recommendation to preserve the beauty of your pavers and other hardscape/masonry projects is Mr.Magic Premium Ice Melt.

Mr. Magic outperforms other ice melts because it works fast and has a great residual effect, preventing further ice from forming and melting snow as it falls.

Mr. Magic Premium Ice Melt, Mr. Magic
Mr. Magic Premium Ice Melt

Mr. Magic is safe enough for the environment, concrete, brick, natural stone, decking, and pets, but it is effective enough to keep working at temperatures down to -25° Fahrenheit, when other ice melts stop.

How is that so?  Mr. Magic’s  unique formulation consists of a special blend of five biodegradable ingredients; potassium chloride (a fertilizer), calcium chloride, magnesium chloride, and sodium chloride. And it is coated with calcium magnesium acetate. This makes it safer and more effective than conventional rock salts.

The orange coloring of Mr. Magic is an added safety bonus because it allows you to see exactly where its been placed so you don’t over or under apply! And it won’t track into your home.

Click Here For Your Downloadable PDF Brochure!

50lb bags are available at

TLC Supply, Inc. 

36 Vernon Street

Quincy, MA 02169

617-773-0055

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If you liked this page be sure to share it with all your friends! And for other great tips to prepare for winter check out this helpful article from Houzz.

The experts at TLC Supply are happy to answer any of your project questions, just give us a shout! Send us an email to info@tlcsupply.com or leave your comments below. 

 “Best Price, Best Advice” -TLC Supply,Inc.”

 

Pre-Made Outdoor Fire Pits

Nothing brings people together like a nice campfire…

So why not gather around, roast some marshmallows, and create lasting memories with an easy to assemble Pre-Made Outdoor Fire Pit?

pre-made outdoor fire pit easy to assemble

An outdoor fire pit can transform your backyard  into the family’s favorite gathering spot and become the place where memories are made. Outdoor fire features have become the hottest growing trend in outdoor living since homeowners have begun yearning to make their outdoor spaces as warm and inviting as the interior of their homes. Pre-made Outdoor Fire pits are available in a variety of colors and can add a touch of elegance to any outdoor living space.

pre-made outdoor fire pit easy to assemble
Techo Bloc Valencia Fire Pit

pre-made outdoor fire pits

It’s That Easy! – How to Install Valencia Fire Pit:

Step 1: Create a compact level surface.

Step 2: Begin creating the fire pit by laying pre-cut blocks in a circle.

pre-made outdoor fire pitsStep 3: Place second row of blocks.

Tip: When installing the second layer, overlap the joints by placing the center of the bloc directly on top of the joint made by the two adjoining blocks beneath it.

Step 4: Fill the inside with 3/4″ crushed stone. This will allow the filtration of rain water.

Pre-made outdoor fire pitStep 5: Once you have built up 4 rows of block then install the metal bowl insert and place the last layer of stone. Top it off with a spark screen and enjoy!

 

Get Inspired…

pre-made outdoor fire pits
Techo Bloc Prescott Fire Pit
pre-made outdoor fire pits
Techo Bloc Raffinatio Fire Pit

You have to try this!

Want to spice up your fire pit and impress your guests? Check out how to make these super easy Pine Cone Fire Starter. You can create inviting scents of cinnamon and vanilla or rosemary and lavender. Click here to make your own Pine Cone Fire Starter

pre-made outdoor fire pit pine cone fire starter
Pine Cone Fire Starter Tutorial from Kate’s Creative Space

TLC Supply carries a selection of pre-made outdoor fire pits from premium paver manufacturer’s Techo BlocGenest ConcreteBelgard and Cambridge Pavers. Please visit our website to see even more hardscape and masonry products ranging from bluestone,granite,brick,natural stone,block,sand,cement, and much more!

The experts at TLC Supply are happy to answer any of your project questions, just give us  leave your questions or comments below. 

 “Best Price, Best Advice” -TLC Supply,Inc.

 

 

Breathable Siloxane Silane Sealers

Siloxane based masonry and brick sealers that are breathable and penetrate into the substrate have many advantages over other surface sealers comprised of acrylics, silicone and epoxies.

Siloxane Silane Water Repellent SealersAdvantages of Sealers:
A breathable sealer will help protect masonry and hardscape in many ways such as,

  • Resist cracking
  • Resist spalling
  • Reduce staining
  • Protects against UV damage
  • Prevents efflorescence
  • Prevent other damage related to water intrusion

Why choose a silane/siloxane blend?

Siloxane based sealers penetrate deep into the capillaries of concrete pavers and brick. The chemical bond that the siloxane and silane creates inside the microscopic pores acts as a resin. It minimizes the sizes of the capillaries so that it is smaller than a water molecule which provides the repellency.

Siloxane Silane SealersPenetration deep below the surface also means that your pavers will not lose protection if they are in a high traffic area. Sealers that sit on top on the paver can be eroded with heavy foot or vehicular traffic.

Siloxane/silane blends will also be 100% breathable. Concrete can absorb water 2 ways, from the surface and from the soil beneath it. These sealers will allow interior water to evaporate while also keeping surface water from penetrating into the paver. This is very important because sealers that do not allow the paver to breathe will trap moisture which can cause water to freeze and break the paver or brick during the colder months.

 

TLC Supply offers several professional grade detergents and breathable siloxane/silane sealers from industry leading brands such as Prosoco and Mapei. TLC also carries a wide selection of premium pavers from Techo Bloc, GenestBelgard and Cambridge Pavers. Please visit our website to see even more hardscape and masonry products ranging from bluestone,granite,brick,natural stone,block,sand,cement, and much more!

Before you go check this out! You may even like our posts  on How to Build a Paver Patio

The experts at TLC Supply are happy to answer any of your project questions, just give us a shout! Leave your questions or comments below. 

 “Best Price, Best Advice” -TLC Supply,Inc.