All materials used for features that are outdoors will suffer under the effects of the weather and other external factors such as wind, foot traffic, etc. Interiors usually deteriorate much later as compared to exterior features because of constant exposure to weather extremes, and moisture. However, with a little bit of planning and occasional, maintenance, these should serve you for years to come.
With the passage of time, masonry surfaces tend to show cracking, chipping or tend to pop out. Mortared stone walls show the ill effects of dampness, with the uppermost surfaces cracking the earliest. After a significant passage of time, a brick or block wall will display signs of aging. Even if there are no cracks, the mortar wears down, and the wall doesn’t retain its initial strength.
In case of patios and walkways, if these have developed cracks which are left untended, moisture or water will further erode the supporting soil or sand, allowing weeds to grow through. Ice that forms inside in cracks can further damage even the heaviest of surfaces.
It is always sensible to carry out maintenance regularly, to keep expensive repairs at bay. Proper maintenance involves inspection of the surface at regular intervals, for signs of damage, stains, loose mortar, and weeds. As soon as you find a problem, attend to these and fix at the earliest.
Sometimes broken tiles cracked grout or mortar joints, and weeds might also indicate serious trouble deep within the structure. Finding out the cause of the damage is also crucial before carrying out any major repairs.
Pavers or Paving blocks can become uneven if the sub-base is unstable. However, all it needs is recompacting the sub-base, after removing the affected pavers for a neat, even surface. For routine maintenance purpose also, pavers can also be removed and reinstalled, every few years.
To maintain Paver surfaces, the process involves removing must and debris by sweeping and rinsing with water. If there are oil or grease stains, cleaning with an appropriate cleaning solution is suggested. Washed away sand in the paver joints needs replenishing every 2 or 3 years. Use of special polymer sand which binds and hardens the sand to prevent erosion ensures such problems do not arise. Sealing concrete paver surfaces will also help to lock in the sand and offer stain protection.