Picture
About a year ago I purchased a foreclosed home.  The backyard contained what came to be known in our household as "the pit."  It was a sectioned off area of the yard that measured 30 feet by 40 feet and contained pea gravel that was 5 inches deep throughout.  At one time "the pit" was home to a large kid's area that contained a play set and swings.  Our initial thought was to get rid of the pea gravel and lay down sod, this was easier said than done.  In an attempt to rid ourselves of "the pit", we advertised the large amount of pea gravel on craigslist for free.  Our thought was that someone would likely have a need for it.  My assumption was correct, there were many in need of pea gravel for various reasons.  Unfortunately they all wanted to come to my house and fill up a few 5 gallon buckets at a time.  The thought of having 50 strangers lining up at my house with buckets wasn't all that appealing to me.

If we couldn't rid ourselves of the gravel, we at least needed to relocate it.  Luckily there happened to be a gentlemen down the road from us with a skid loader.  We were able to get him to scrape up the pea gravel and move it to the back of our property.  Once the gravel was relocated we discovered it would be quite costly to prepare the area and install sod.  At this point, the brainstorming began.  What if we would make a patio out of pavers to reduce the size of the area we needed to cover with sod?  This seemed like a great idea until we found out how much pavers would cost.  Then it happened, we were driving to the Home Depot, on the way there we passed a construction site and saw a large pile of broken concrete.  Maybe it was all in my head, but I swear it had a magical glow about it.  Anyway, my wife and I were thinking the same thing.  We would use broken concrete instead of store bought pavers.  When we returned home we hopped online to search craigslist for broken concrete. Just as we had suspected, there were many posts from people who had driveways, sidewalks, or patios redone and wanted to get rid of the old broken concrete but didn't want to pay to have it removed.

I contacted several of the concrete donors and was able to source a steady supply of broken concrete. Now it was time to get to work.  To frame the new patio area I used the existing railroad ties that previously bordered the "gravel pit."  Since I was already the proud owner of a mound of pea gravel, it was the perfect resource to create the base for the patio.  Even if you do not have easy access to a large amount of gravel, search some local online classifieds, just like concrete, it seems to be pretty easy to find for free.  The purpose of putting down the gravel first is to provide drainage for water.  This will help prevent water from freezing beneath the concrete in the winter.  If you are lucky enough to live in an area with frigid winters, you are probably well aware how freezing water expands and causes shifting.  

Picture
In the past I had made a fairly small paver patio with store bought pavers.  With that project I was very careful to make sure the pavers were perfectly placed and level.  I spent hours upon hours using leveling sand to ensure the patio looked perfect.  Am I going to take the same care in creating the broken concrete patio?  Heck no I'm not!  Initially I was going to go the same route making everything perfect and level.  My concern with each piece being level quickly went out the window when I realized the time involved and how it would test the limits of my sanity.  In my case, the broken concrete I was working with varied quite a bit in thickness, however, you may get lucky and find concrete all with the same thickness.  At first I was somewhat concerned that just "eyeing up" the patio would make it appear sloppy and thrown together, but once I got some of the broken concrete in place I realized it wouldn't be an issue.  Whether or not you can get away with just "eyeing it up" will greatly depend on the placement of the patio and obviously your specific tastes.  Since my patio is out in the middle of my yard with a fire pit in the middle, the imperfect approach worked for me.  A quick piece of advice, do not spend much time trying to find the perfect spot for each piece of broken concrete.  All the pieces will be irregularly shaped and you will drive yourself nuts trying to fit pieces together nicely.  My suggestion is to just lay it down where it looks like it will fit fairly decent and just leave it.  When you finish your project you will realize that the placement of each piece really doesn't matter much at all.

Picture
Once I had all the broken concrete pavers laid down, I filled in the gaps between the concrete pieces with... you guessed it... pea gravel!  I accomplished this step by shoveling the gravel onto the patio surface.  I then used an old broom to sweep the gravel into the gaps.  You can also use sand for this step if you'd like.  Initially I was going to fill the gaps about three quarters full of gravel and fill the rest with sand (which can also usually be found free) but I liked the look of the pea gravel in the gaps so I left it as is.  Once you've finished filling the gaps, for the most part, that's it, you're done!  

Picture
In conclusion, I'm hoping this has inspired at least a few people to give this a try.  The biggest hurdle is deciding to do it and taking the first step.  

A couple more tips for anyone who decides to tackle this project:

-Get some well-fitting thick leather gloves. Why? Concrete is heavy and if you are moving it around without gloves, you will pinch your fingers between the concrete, it will break the skin, it will hurt and it will be followed by foul language.  I know this first hand (no pun intended).

-Do not wear sandals as they offer minimal protection against falling concrete.  Instead I would suggest a boot, preferably steel toed.

-Do not strive for perfection, its broken concrete, you will not achieve it.  If you are looking for a patio that is perfectly level with each piece fit perfectly together, this project is not for you.


If you have any questions or have done this yourself please comment below.  I'm interested in hearing your experiences.

 


Comments

11/17/2014 4:42am

auto classifieds sydney can definitely take you places. You can be ensured of the highest quality of pre-owned or used cars that’s in great demand in the market today.

Reply
08/14/2017 6:01am

To be honest, this is such a genius idea. I'm really glad that I came across with this article. My family and I have been really having a hard time deciding if we would build a patio for the extra space in our yard. We love to make our yard look like more attractive and classy but will still stay on our budget. That's why I think this is really the sign for us that we should have a patio. The process kinda looks complicated, but I think we can actually pull this off because we're going to call for some extra hands.

Reply
02/05/2016 12:49am

Your patio is very good :)

Reply
03/03/2016 6:46am

In order to analyse the above archetypal characters, I am going to use the entertainment medium of film-making to predominately draw my examples from.

Reply
04/03/2016 10:30pm

An entirely completely new ltempat substantive decrease prefer to show it?s the work to create up due to the fact for this site web page When i basically could floral thinking of will probably be currently. Yet another individual lura usual.

Reply
04/03/2016 11:21pm

write-up whole check with such a customer survey statement therefore assorted which in turn any person will never be dreary for making along with analyzing your internet site.

Reply

It's likely you have practically any kind of view however, if the web page site had been on the inside issue it's rather exceptional, The actual wife or husband as well as nearly all individuals usually are not getting bored to dying to death to death the following!!!

Reply

This sort of morning hours arrive even though, regarding not any reason considered nowadays The actual wife or husband as well as nearly all individuals can be extremely good to view such a web web page.

Reply
04/21/2016 12:01am

I have to do this myself! But I don't know how to start...

Reply
05/10/2016 11:40pm

No matter what we are doing at what place. When we will do our work with passion and interest we will known as the good guy. Only our work and behavior with other can make us diamond into eyes of other people.

Reply
05/11/2016 1:54pm

great blog, this point is truly intriguing, a debt of gratitude is in order for sharing, my commitment here.

Reply
05/12/2016 8:15am

I believe that this information will be beneficial to travel marketers to plan their strategies. Benchmarking will also help a lot.

Reply
05/16/2016 2:38am

Your porch is great. It's reasonable you have basically any sort of perspective nonetheless, if the site page site had been within issue it's somewhat extraordinary, the real spouse or husband and almost all people more often than not will be not getting exhausted to kicking the bucket to death to death the accompanying. But why you don’t use essay writing services for your blog? Make use of these services I am sure you will get your content very popular on the internet. Keep it up and stay posting.

Reply
05/25/2016 11:02pm

Much obliged for partaking in subtle element. Your site is a motivation! Separated of truly valuable tips, it's equitable truly !

Reply
06/03/2016 1:43pm

I was speculating on the off chance that You Could compose somewhat more on this subject? I'd be extremely appreciative in the event that You Could expound a tiny bit more.

Reply
06/12/2016 2:00am

Nice guide! I like it so much!

Reply
06/18/2016 3:02am

Do you really interested in hearing my experiences?

Reply
07/14/2016 12:08am

The pursuit of truth and beauty is a sphere of activity in which we are permitted to remain children all our lives.

Reply
08/06/2016 11:16pm

I was guessing if You Could write a little more on this subject? I'd be very grateful if You Could elaborate a little bit more.I found this post very exciting. I think you will have any other post on this topic? I am also sending it to my friend to enjoy your working style. Cheers!

Reply
10/20/2016 8:05am

I have perused loads of posts concerning the blogger darlings yet this article is really a decent review, keep up it up.

Reply

There are something better in our entire life to make sure that we always having a good life to introduced some changes in a good manner but we always keep to do something better.

Reply
03/22/2017 2:41am

There is something really amazing but we always have to take care of doing a good job in order to make sure that we will take care of something good.

Reply

This is really better way to intorduced something really amazing but we will ask for a good deeds in order to keep looking for better changes.

Reply
05/06/2017 2:33am

Amazing stuff from you once again. You really are the best writer of this era, my friend. I hope you will give us more stuff like this in the future. You must not stop now/

Reply
07/07/2017 10:07am

Really great post nice work i love your work and its really helped me in my research.Thanks

Reply
09/10/2017 10:27am

I'm saying that to say when they did something I would hit them with a buckle keep pressing cable , get them to get me juice snacks est ... factors she did.

Reply

Interesting!! I never considered it that way. I came across this site as of late which I suppose it will be an incredible utilization of new plans and informations.

Reply

I believe that this information will be beneficial to travel marketers to plan their strategies. Benchmark will also help a lot.

Reply
10/16/2017 11:36am

I like your blog post. Keep on writing this type of great stuff. I'll make sure to follow up on your blog in the future.

Reply



Leave a Reply

    Projects

    All
    Broken Concrete Patio
    Pallet Coffee Table
    Wedding Entrance
    Wedding Flower Holders



    Enter your email address to receive new posts via email: