Sustainability has emerged as a priority among homeowners seeking to update or build new exterior flooring such as driveways, patios and walkways. Interlocking concrete pavers, whose installation involves interlocking the paving stones with paver jointing sand, are an excellent sustainable choice in many respects.
Concrete Takes Less Energy to Produce Than Other Materials
The energy requirement for concrete is one-third the energy needed to produce asphalt. And this is just one reason why it is regarded as a sustainable construction material. For other construction and installation applications too, concrete production requires lesser energy than that for steel, glass and plywood.
Concrete also happens to be extremely strong and durable. It resists weather elements, chemical attacks and other forms of abrasion and deterioration impressively. Depending on the weather conditions in the area where interlocking concrete pavers will be installed and the potential causes of deterioration, mix materials and quantities, compressive strength, admixtures and other aspects should be considered.
When quality concrete is used, repaving requires fewer repairs. Repairs to the surface and subsurface can also be done by reusing the same paving units.
Concrete pavers withstand repeated freeze-thaw conditions easily. The joints between pavers allow for expansion and contraction, so heaving and cracking is unlikely to occur.
Permeable Concrete Pavers Minimize Run-Of from Snow Melt and Precipitation
Melting snow and rain carry water and pollution into local waterways. Melting snow and stormwater runoff go hand in hand. As the ground is frozen at the surface, melting snow cannot enter the soil, and causes flooding on your property. Extended winter storms can flood the entire community. The flowing water mixes with debris, chemicals and de-icing salts, and flows into streams and rivers, posing a hazard to fish and wildlife. Runoff can also cause erosion, leading to lower soil productivity, increasing the muddiness of rivers, lakes and estuaries, and in some cases, enabling the growth of toxic algal blooms.
Pervious or porous interlocking concrete pavers can prevent run-off from melting snow or heavy rains. The pavers filter storm water through their joints to the base layers that trap most of the pollutants. In fact, permeable pavers can lower nearly 80% of the total suspended solid levels in storm water. By ensuring the infiltration of rain and melted snow through its layers, permeable interlocking concrete pavers maintain health groundwater levels, and support the growth and survival of plant life.
Prevent Dangerously High Local Temperature Levels
The heat island effect describes urban built-up areas that are hotter than rural areas in their proximity. This occurs due to the reflection of heat and light from the exposed urban surfaces, and the difference can be as high as 22 degree Fahrenheit. Urban heat islands occur along with higher pollution levels, with ill-effects ranging from general discomfort to non-fatal heat stroke. Light-colored interlocking concrete pavers reflect light and heat to moderate local temperature levels, removing the need to turn up the air-conditioning.
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When installed perfectly by a qualified paving contractor, interlocking concrete pavers can fulfill all the eco-friendly objectives expected of them. Give us a call to learn more!