Stone vs Porcelain Pavers

Published by Armstone

When you’re designing your outdoor landscape, there are two great options for solid, beautiful and functional paving – these are, Natural Stone pavers and Structural Porcelain pavers.

Most people know a little bit about Natural stone pavers however Structural Porcelain Pavers are a newer addition to the market.

I’m sure you’ve heard about ordinary porcelain tiles and may possibly be using that knowledge to form an opinion as we speak about the strength of structural porcelain pavers, right?

What are Porcelain Pavers made of?

Porcelain Pavers are Structurally compressed clay that are compressed so much that they don’t have any weak fracture points which allows for a non-porous, super strong paver that has a very high break load.

IVORY PORCLEAIN 3Ivory Porcelain Pavers

Stone Pavers VS Porcelain Pavers

In this article we are going to look at firstly Structural Porcelain pavers- the advantages and limitations, then we will look at Stone Pavers and do the same.

Structural porcelain pavers are actually a world apart from outdoor porcelain tiles. They are a strong, efficient and practical outdoor paving solution – designed to stand against all types of natural problems or human errors!

There are various makes and models for structural porcelain, as there are with anything that’s man made – so it’s imperative to look out for a quality product when you decide to go down this route.

SANSTONE PORCELAINSandstone Porcelain Paver

(We’ll run through what makes for a quality product in the world of porcelain paving a little later)

So there are a few important personal factors to consider when choosing our flooring outdoors.

  • – What kind of lifestyle do you lead?
  • – What are your surrounds? (Is there trees, pets, children, BBQ’s, parties?)
  • – Will the area be undercover or open?
  • – Will it be used for around pool?

Whilst natural stone pavers are a beautiful and timeless choice, there are conditions that go hand in hand with such natural beauty.

Natural Stone Pavers Vs Porcelain Pavers

Do I need to Maintain my pavers?

Maintenance – arguably every human beings nightmare! (Unless you are one of the lucky few retired or semi-retired individuals living life in your beautiful garden)

Depending on your surrounds, natural stone pavers – even the densest and durable stone like Granite can be challenging to keep clean. Natural stone can be painful to look after if you have trees or pets or maybe some over-active kids?

Tree’s tend to drop leaves almost all year round, these leaves have tannin in them, within around the 48-hour mark leaves start to progressively decompose and this process releases the tannin. 

Those of you who don’t know, tannin is a substance present in some galls, barks, plant tissues of derivatives of  Gallic Acid which can stain the natural stone. The tannin will slowly and surely find its way into the pores of the stone and can stay.

Depending on the type of stone you have installed and how long the acidic culprit has been sitting on the stone. The situation can go from challenging to clean too impossible to clean.

Will the stone Sealer make it Stain Proof?

Sealing the stone will help give you some extra time to attend to the removal of  intruders however it will not completely remove the risk of stain-age. Unfortunately, it’s not just leaves in this category – pet pee, wine and almost anything else acidic will cause this issue. !

It doesn’t really matter if you’ve used an A grade product nor does it matter if you’ve sealed your stone with good quality expensive sealant, Acid doesn’t discriminate, it will go through the sealant and will try its best to stain.

The Stone sealer provides a stain resistance barrier, that allows time to wipe up any spills. This is explained extensively in our literature as reaction time.

I’m guessing you are realising as you read on that the questions are critical in making the right decision for your home or project, for the long term.

There may also be some stone products that are too slippery for open area’s and not suitable around your pool or open entertaining area. This really comes down to the finish of the product and making sure whoever is supplying you with the stone pavers, knows how to test the stone for things like slip rating, chlorine and salt resistance etc.

Now, given the right circumstances is not all gloomy!

MELBA LIMESTONEMelba Limestone Pavers

With the right area and correct application, it can be heavenly to see true art unfold in front of your eyes – natural stone products are impossible to recreate. The stunning character and depth in products from the earth are second to none. From the beauty of Limestone pavers through to Bluestone pavers it’s the kind of art that only mother nature can create.

If you have the time to care for the product – it will love you back equally. Many quality stones will stand the test of time, given you have cared for it how it deserves to be cared for.

This includes installing your pavers with quality installation products, ensuring the substrate is ideal for the applications you have chosen and the stone has been correctly sealed/pre-sealed.

Depending on what stone you opt for, any professional stone supplier should know what is required for each type of stone.

An easy way to put things into perspective, you have just gone into a dealership and decided on a brand new Ferrari – you drive out and decide to fill up the petrol in your new beauty.
Would fill up your Ferrari with E10 petrol? No, no way on earth… It’s wise to take the same approach with your natural stone pavers.

The luxury stone pavers can add to your garden is jaw-dropping and it enforces your position and unique taste to the rest of your friends and family.

Siri Marble Pavers & CopingSiri Marble Pavers

Some of you may now see why natural stone isn’t always the best options, it’s not easily going to fit in with your busy lifestyle, minimal time and high desire to enjoy your outdoors in your fast-paced life. There is still hope!

A fully functional solution – structural porcelain pavers are the way to go.

Planning a nice summer vacation for your family?
Whilst your big beautiful gumtree sheds its vibrant green leaves… You can holiday away, knowing full well upon your return you can clean your structural porcelain pavers with any chemical and no adverse effects!

Porcelain pavers, never permanently stain.

Yes, you read it right.

Never permanently stain.

Now, don’t think of this product as the inferior sibling of stone pavers. You aren’t making a concession here, you are picking the right paver for you. Porcelain pavers are made from extremely strong clay and are equally as dense as some of the most sturdy natural stones known to man.

Quality structural porcelain pavers come in a wide array of colours, textures and patterns to ensure your outdoors is looking as close to natural stone as humanly possible, with absolutely no downside.

Ideal for use in wet areas, porcelain pavers are of commercial grade slip resistance and can be laid on any substrate (sand, grass, pedestals)

Finally, the whole family can safely enjoy the outdoors and you need not worry about your pets staining your pavers or your child’s friends spilling OJ all over the poolside pavers.

For a fully functional, low maintenance lifestyle there is no better option. A quality porcelain paving option will entail all of the features above and more.

Now that you’ve got a good foundation of what products may work for you. It’s time to browse through some of our range and see which one of these options will work for you. If you need some help with this, send us an email or drop us a comment and we’ll reach out asap.

Until next time,

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Arman Minas

Arman Minas

Director at Armstone
A committed and enthusiastic expert, Arman has more than 10 years experience in the stone industry and 20 years in the design space. Arman’s strong, customer focused passion has seen countless projects come to life. At the head of the Armstone team, Arman oversees all aspects of the business.

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