Introduction to Paving Blocks

Background

Paving blocks have made a fast inroad into the construction industry, and have almost become the de-facto choice. Most construction firms nowadays prefer paving blocks over slabs, asphalt, stone or clay. Mass production of paving blocks has reduced their price, and made it easily affordable. With the advent of paving block machines, it has become even simpler to complete their laying.

Types of Paving Blocks

There are two basic types of paving blocks concrete and clay.

Concrete Paving Blocks:

Concrete blocks are mass manufactured to standard sizes. This makes them interchangeable. Typical concrete paving blocks have one smooth face and one rough, although some paving blocks so come with reversible surfaces (can be used both sides). The performance characteristics of concrete paving blocks make it suitable for the heaviest duty applications, able to support substantial loads and resist shearing and braking forces.

These blocks come in different colours. The colours typically come from metallic oxides. However, these colours tend to fade over a period of time, so it is helpful to exercise caution while selecting them!

Concrete paving blocks are the most preferred choice for laying of pavements, driveways, etc.

Clay Paving Blocks

Clay paving blocks (also called as bricks or cobbles) are generally available as typical, rectangular bricks, although custom shapes can be made for specific projects. Unlike the concrete paving blocks, both the surfaces of most clay blocks are fully useable or interchangeable.

Clay bricks do not use any dyes to impart colour; they come in natural colour. Consequently, the colour of these blocks does not usually fade with time. Clay paving blocks are more difficult to cut than their concrete counterpart.

The paving blocks are most suitable for walls or pillars.

Here are some salient advantages of paving blocks:

  • can be used immediately after laying
  • comfortable to walk on
  • excellent interlocking characteristics
  • very durable
  • great aesthetics