The difference in alternative pavements

If you have been in the market or have a job that requires paving. Then you may have heard of things like permeable, porous, and pervious pavers.  All which help with controlling water and heat retention. But, what are the differences in these methods and designs? Below are brief descriptions and features of these different methods.

Porous pavers have been around the longest, gaining popularity in the mid-1940’s using concrete and continuing to be popular today, with more modern plastic versions becoming exceptionally popular in the construction and heavy equipment fields. This paver system is a cellular grid system created by the medium (plastic, concrete, or another rigid building material), which is then filled with dirt, sand, or gravel. It can be reinforced with grass, to give a more aesthetically pleasing finish and to help avoid erosion and re-settling. Because a majority of the surface material is granulated, water soaks through the gravel, dirt, or sand, and then stored in the soil layer that’s underneath it. The main benefit of the Porous system is that the pavers help keep the soil from compacting, meaning that it will remain permeable by water for longer.

Pervious pavers may look like concrete or stone paving blocks, but they are actually able to allow water to percolate through them. This not only allows the soil beneath them to breathe and for water to go through them, but when the water passes through the pavers, it actually filters the water and removes pollutants and particles before the water goes into the soil. This can be particularly helpful in urban situations where wastewater management can be difficult to manage. They’re also a health benefactor, as well! They act as a vector control, meaning that they prevent viruses, such as West Nile or Zika, by eliminating the standing water that mosquitoes use to breed and lay eggs. These pavers are designed to keep sub-surface water from stagnating, meaning the mosquito larvae cannot develop into adult mosquitoes.

Permeable pavers are usually made out of concrete, fired clay, or brick. Instead of allowing the water to go through them, this paving system uses crushed aggregate in-between the pavers (kind of like grout in a kitchen or bathroom) where water can go around the pavers, instead of going through them. The benefits of permeable pavers are simple, they look aesthetically pleasing with their architectural feel, they can handle light and heavy traffic without much damage, and they are also versatile in that they can handle high volume and high speed traffic much better than the previous two methods. This can be important for areas that are going to see lots of people, cars, and trucks, which may make a porous paver muddy or a pervious paver crack.

Depending on the job or preference you have, will ultimately decide which one you will choose. Either way you choose, you will know that you will be contributing less to the environment, which is always a good bonus. If you have any more questions or are interested in installing one of these paving methods, just speak to a local contractor or distributor of these products.