Why We Don’t Install Pavers Over Concrete

It sounds like a good idea, to use an existing concrete pad as the base for your pavers. This is a mistake that many homeowners make, when they decide to make a paver patio a DIY project. When one of our Macomb County customers comes to us and asks if we can install pavers over concrete, our first answer is, “Yes, but…”. You see, our desire to avoid this practice isn’t because it isn’t possible, it’s because the product you’ll get from us will be substantially better, if we remove the old concrete, and start from scratch. If you are thinking about having us install new pavers over an existing piece of concrete, here are some things to consider.

The Limitations

Yes, it is possible to install pavers over concrete. However, there are some limitations to the application that you need to consider before you decide that this is the right solution for your patio or driveway. First, you really are limited in the size and shape of the area that you are working with. If you are starting with a square concrete slab, all you are ever going to have is a square concrete slab. If you are thinking about this process for a driveway, installing pavers on top of your exiting concrete slab will quickly stress your pavers, stone or brick, eventually leading to breakage. While it may not be so bad of a practice for a patio, pavers over concrete should be completely avoided for driveways.

Height Challenged

One thing that is often overlooked when considering the placement of pavers over concrete is the change in height. If you are thinking about installing pavers over an existing concrete patio or driveway, you may not realize that you will increase the height of your surface by an inch or more. This is problematic when you consider transitions from the street or curb onto your driveway, or perhaps this creates a ledge between a door and your patio. These little ledges can be weak points in your paver hard surface and a tripping hazard for you, your family and friends.


Installing pavers over an existing concrete slab can create drainage problems or exacerbate existing drainage issues. If you have a section of concrete that pools water before you install pavers, it’s probably going to hold water after, and likely even worse. Pooling water can create slip hazards, damage pavers, and if too close to your home, cause problems with your foundation. If you don’t have existing drainage problems, there is the potential to create drainage problems with pavers over concrete. Drainage issues is one of the biggest reasons we recommend avoiding this practice.

Better Quality Final Product

When it comes to paver hardscapes, the reality is, the base material is directly related to the quality of the project. We like to install pavers over a flexible, well-draining surface. A base that is composed of aggregate and sand will allow your paver surface to flex and move without damage. And, it allows water to drain away, reducing the potential for unsafe pooling. When old concrete is removed, and we can install your paver hardscape on the right surface, you will have a beautiful, long-lasting patio, pool patio, or driveway, that won’t be a hazard around your home or require constant repair.

Classic Landscape has been creating beautiful hardscapes and landscapes for southeast Michigan for over 25 years. We know how to turn your old concrete patios and driveways into beautiful paver features. If you are ready to replace your concrete with pavers, call us today at (586) 243-3555.