The term “polymeric sand” might sound like some sort of high-tech, futuristic product, but there’s a good chance you’ve encountered it somewhere along the line.
It’s a type of sand used to fill in the joints between pavers, a product that’s created by mixing a fine sand with additives – typically silica – and water to form a binding agent that helps lock pavers together.
Everyone dreams of a maintenance free patio that always looks amazing, so yes, of course you used polymeric sand in between your joints to make this scenario more likely. You followed all the directions, and yet…it’s still soft! Why? People are quick to yell “bad batch” for the failure; turns out, that outcome is actually rare. The following variables are most likely one of the reasons your poly is still soft:
In July of 2013, we wrote an article regarding the proper installation of polymeric sand. That article is reprinted below with minor updates. However, a major change is occurring in 2016. Major polymeric sand manufacturers have revised their formulas to reduce the risk of polymeric haze. Products with this new composition will begin to appear this spring and should be widely available by summer.
Nothing has changed in the proper installation and maintenance, the new formula simply reduces the probability of residual hazing and clean up.
Polymeric sand is used to fill joints between pavers, including concrete pavers, stone pavers and brick pavers. The fine sand is combined with additives, usually silica, and forms a binding agent after it’s mixed with water.
Using polymeric sand instead of plain sand has many benefits including:
- Prevents Washouts
- Offers Different Colors
- Improves Durability
- Prevents Weeds