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10 Easy Pieces: Permeable Pavers

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10 Easy Pieces: Permeable Pavers

May 15, 2018

Pavers have their own language: They can be porous, permeable, or pervious. All three types are designed with sustainability in mind, to filter rainwater and prevent runoff. So what’s the difference?

Permeable pavers typically have solid concrete surfaces and are meant to be laid with wide spaces between them on a bed of gravel or aggregate. Storm water collects in the joints and is absorbed into an underground base of gravel, which filters pollutants and prevents runoff.

Porous and pervious paving, in contrast, start filtering pollutants from rainwater as soon as the drops hit ground. Porous pavement, such as grass block pavers in which plants such as turf grass grow above a base of soil, gravel, or sand, typically is an interlocking grid system. Pervious pavers are made of compacted stone or gravel aggregate through which water can percolate.

If you’re looking for an environmentally friendly surface for a driveway, path, or patio, start with our picks for permeable pavers (and stay turned for an upcoming post on pervious pavements). Here are our choices for permeable pavers.

Suitable to use to surface driveways, paths, patios, and swimming pool decks, an Aqua Roc II Classic permeable paver (installed as a driveway surface in the featured photo at top) measures 3 / by 7 7/8 by 3 loading=
Above: Suitable to use to surface driveways, paths, patios, and swimming pool decks, an Aqua Roc II Classic permeable paver (installed as a driveway surface in the featured photo at top) measures 3 15/16 by 7 7/8 by 3 1/8 inches. For more information and pricing, see Belgard.
An Aquapaver designed to prevent stormwater runoff is available in nine colors and two finishes; sold in lot sizes to cover 9
Above: An Aquapaver designed to prevent stormwater runoff is available in nine colors and two finishes; sold in lot sizes to cover 92 square feet, the pavers are $280.60 per lot from Tremron.
A four-by-eight-inch HydraStone brick system allows water to percolate downward, between pavers, into a layer of compacted gravel. For more information and prices, see Reading Rock.
Above: A four-by-eight-inch HydraStone brick system allows water to percolate downward, between pavers, into a layer of compacted gravel. For more information and prices, see Reading Rock.
Hanover Architectural Products&#8
Above: Hanover Architectural Products’ 12-by-18-inch Permeable Paver is suitable for use for pedestrian walkways. Custom colors and textures are available; for more information and prices, see Hanover.
Eco-Optiloc Pavers available in four finishes are . inches square and have a &#8
Above: Eco-Optiloc Pavers available in four finishes are 10.25 inches square and have a “patented L-shaped design to achieve a superior lock-up that can withstand even the heaviest of loads residentially and commercially. The innovative design creates small voids between the pavers providing drainage into the sub-base,” notes the manufacturer. For prices and more information, see Unilock.
A permeable Holland Stone paver measures five by  inches and is available in multiple color choices. For more information and prices, see Belgard.
Above: A permeable Holland Stone paver measures five by 10 inches and is available in multiple color choices. For more information and prices, see Belgard.
Interlocking SF-Rima permeable pavers measure eight square inches each and are $30loading=
Above: Interlocking SF-Rima permeable pavers measure eight square inches each and are $301.95 for a lot that covers 99 square feet, from Tremron.
Subterra Stone Pavers have a pressed face created with a mold during the manufacturing process and are available in a range of solid or blended colors. With a false joint structure, each paver block is divided into four &#8
Above: Subterra Stone Pavers have a pressed face created with a mold during the manufacturing process and are available in a range of solid or blended colors. With a false joint structure, each paver block is divided into four “bricks” and measures 7 5/8 by 11 3/8 by 3 1/8 inches.  For more information and prices, see Belgard.
Richcliff concrete permeable pavers are available in four colors and three sizes; they have an embossed surface texture. For more information and prices, see Unilock.
Above: Richcliff concrete permeable pavers are available in four colors and three sizes; they have an embossed surface texture. For more information and prices, see Unilock.
Suitable for use as a driveway surface, Permeable Pavers in a classic four-by-eight-inch brick shape are durable enough to withstand the weight of heavy vehicles. The pavers are sold in 96-square-foot lots; $
Above: Suitable for use as a driveway surface, Permeable Pavers in a classic four-by-eight-inch brick shape are durable enough to withstand the weight of heavy vehicles. The pavers are sold in 96-square-foot lots; $292.80 per lot from Tremron.
Available in a variety of sizes and shapes, Eco Dublin permeable pavers connect &#8
Above: Available in a variety of sizes and shapes, Eco Dublin permeable pavers connect “the classic look of cut stone together with contemporary materials technology” to prevent rainwater runoff; available in two colors and three sizes. See Belgard for more information and prices.

If you’re planning a hardscape project and looking for tips and materials, see our curated Hardscape 101 guides to Decks & Patios 101 and Pavers 101. To see how grass block pavers look after they’ve been installed, check out some of our favorite projects:

For more paver choices, see our recent 10 Easy Pieces posts on Stone Deck Tiles, Nonslip Floor Tiles, Wood Flooring for Decks, and Grass Block Pavers.

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