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    Should I use Concrete or Paving Slabs in my garden?


    Hello all, We are looking to have a patio-esque area in our garden by using slabs. We don’t know if we are best to use paving on these areas as they are or whether we should have a cement layer applied for the area. If anyone has any recommendation or experience with this type of thing, please let us know. Thanks!

    Asked by Charles on 4th Mar 2019
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    Best Answer

    TS Gardening Services

    "Hi, Ultimately the choice will be up to you here and your experience may vary on how you treat your cement/slabs over time to some extent. Concrete itself will be the cheaper option and can be all setup within about a day, but I would warn you about the necessity to keep it clean and that there can be a residual smell of cement, which can be particularly noticeable in the summer months. Keeping cement clean will involve using a jet wash or something similar, which will mean that there should be considerations for the drainage from the cement too. Over time as concrete is cleaned like this, this can cause some degree of erosion of the surface, which could make it look a bit worse for wear. While concrete will be cheaper than using slabs, it will likely look cheaper on the whole. Which brings us to one other option; concrete imprinting. This will be more expensive than concrete on it’s own, but may be a suitable option for you. Principally this is still the same concrete, but with some key differences. Imprinting allows for an actual pattern to be imprinted in the concrete for a better visual effect than the plain flat concrete.
    Additionally, imprinted concrete will usually be sealed as part of the process, which makes it easier for cleaning and reduce any residual smell of concrete afterwards – both of which could be beneficial for the long-term care. Slabs will generally have fewer issues than the concrete options on the whole, but will be more expensive to have installed. Most would consider the slabs to be more aesthetically pleasing on the whole with different styles and colours available. Conversely to the concrete, slabs will not look cheap, simply because slabs won’t be cheap – arguably a pro or a con. Slabs will be quite easy to clean typically & if there is ever any damage, an individual slab can be replaced, rather than relaying a whole concrete layer or using filler material which could leave an area of the surface looking conspicuous against the rest of the surface. I would think that if your budget could account for slabs, that this would be the option you would choose, but this will likely depend on your own circumstances and preferences. Again, the choice will be up to you, based on your preferences, budget and level of concerns for any of these factors above. Hopefully this information helps you get your garden how you want it. Best of luck with your garden in any case!"

    Answered on 4th Mar 2019 - Member since Mar 2019 - report
    AM Landscapes

    "I would suggest using paving slabs for your back garden, to give it a nicer finish"

    Answered on 5th Jun 2020 - Member since May 2020 - report
    Mike Silvey Paving and Landscaping

    "Slabs are always the best looking. I personally prefer sandstone especially as you can get this cheaper than most concrete slabs."

    Answered on 6th May 2020 - Member since Jan 2020 - report
    Anglia Home Services

    "If you want the "patio-esque" look then I would advise slabs. They have a much better look especially in the back gardens for relaxing in.

    Concrete is more suitable for front house gardens e.g. parking a car on and concrete generally is a product that focuses on function and less on form/looks.

    I hope this helps you to make an informed decision."

    Answered on 14th Jul 2020 - Member since Jul 2020 - report

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