Limestone Screening or Gravel as a Base Material To Make A Side Walk With 2'X2' Concrete pavers.

Question Icon
Posted by: from Brampton
6/11/2012 at 3:24:23 PM

So I am making a side walk at my house on next weekend, I researched a bit and found out that I need to dig around 4" and then lay gravel and then on top put 2'x2' pavers. I decided to dig around 1" install 2" high plastic edging and then throw in the material, tamper it and put tiles on top.

When I went to order gravel the guy told me I should buy limestone screening rather than gravel.

Q1. What do you guys think? Is limestone screening a better option for type of job I am doing?

I have side walk 40'x4' and backyard patio area of 20'x11' to be worked on.

The total cost I am estimating is around $500 ($150 for 2.5 ton limestone screening and 350 for 50 tiles.)

Q2. Is this cost effective? Any better ideas?

Thanks in advance for your anticipated replies. :)

 limestone screening or gravel as a base material to make a side walk with 2'x2' concrete pavers.
User Icon
Date/Time6/11/2012 at 5:31:07 PM

Limestone fits and compresses better, by digging in deeper is better, then relaying on the plastic edging to keep the blocks and limestone in place.

Ground always shifts. 4 inch Dig 2 inches of lime stone compacted. Will last a lot longer

User Icon
Double J in Brantford
Date/Time6/11/2012 at 6:08:01 PM

Limestone screenings are much better for unistone pavers. They compress better and will stay that way much longer. 4" of screenings are recommended and spend a lot of time compacting it. When you think you have packed it enough go over it again. This will ensure that your pavers do not sink in the future.

User Icon
Date/Time6/11/2012 at 6:28:38 PM

You should dig 12 inches then put 8 inches of crushed stone, compact it good then you should put angel dust, then lay your stones, don't forget to put sand between the stones, that is where the strength comes from....just remember this, the deeper you go, the better for the settling.

User Icon
Date/Time6/11/2012 at 9:48:05 PM

The primary reason for the "gravel" is drainage and a base to have the pavers settle in to. I'd suggest regular graver, ... not "Pit run" ... ( pit run is gravel straight from the pit which contains everything from sand to large rocks, whatever is in the pit.) Limestone ??? just get something that works and is inexpensive.

I would suggest a base of the gravel and top it off with about an inch of sand. The sand will be easier to level and once you place your pavers, you can tamp them into a level surface with relative ease.

Cost? It depends on who you buy from and the quality. I would suggest adding a few dollars (keep this in your mind) and go with a proper job. If you look only for the "deal", you may regret it in the long run.

Good luck with your project.

User Icon
Vish in Brampton
Date/Time6/11/2012 at 10:53:33 PM

Thanks a lot guys for your valuable suggestions.

So the general consensus is that Limestone screening is good and I need to dig deeper.

I will keep this in mind.

I can understand that I need to dig 4" at least but is 2" OK as well? with 2' high edging to support the pavers.

Will it work?

User Icon
Vish in Brampton
Date/Time6/11/2012 at 10:59:17 PM


3/4" Gravel and limestone screening both were costing same, the supplier suggested me to go with lime stone screening, and I am new to this so I wanted to know if it is a good idea to go with lime stone screening.

I don't trust the supplier because for an area of 400 sq. ft he suggested me 5 yard of screening which when I calculated online was almost double then what I need actually. So I am asking experienced people like you for some suggestions.

User Icon
Date/Time6/12/2012 at 2:23:54 AM


I am a bit concerned about only digging 1" and installing plastic edging. I do not think that the plastic edging will support the weight of the pavers, gravel and the human activity over the walkway.

If you explained the site conditions as you have in your information then I would take the advice of the person who suggested limestone screening over gravel.

I think it is cost effective if that is the right costs that you have been quoted and are quoting in your information. There could be delivery charges and underload charges so please check with the suppliers and don't forget the HST.

User Icon
Vish in Brampton
Date/Time6/12/2012 at 9:00:56 AM

Thanks Lou!

User Icon
Gaby from Amg Renovation in Hearst
Date/Time6/12/2012 at 5:26:32 PM


My name is Gabriel,

Certified Contractor and Inspector,

I would say 6" deep is the min, but good 4" of limestone (YES BETTER) and your 2" side walk = 6"

4" of compacting mat, (compact this first) after add your black tarp (A MUST) so water can go away and weeds don't grow between your side walk. because you would hate to trim this in summer time, (NEVER MIND YOUR PLASTIC EDGING WONT DO NOTHING FOR THIS JOB) add your 2x2 slab and with a rubber hammer or your hands put it to level and enjoy your side walk.

If you have more questions ask and we will help you.


User Icon
Date/Time6/13/2012 at 9:46:15 AM

If you were putting down uni-stone it would be best to dress the top 4" over top of crushed stone so you would have a smooth flat surface to lay the stones.

Seeing you are using large paver stones it is fine to just use crushed stone. You can level pavers on crushed stone easily. It would take a bit more prep time dressing the top with screening and compacting for pavers but time will be saved when putting pavers down.

It wouldn't really be that much of a differance either way. Time or material.

Search the TrustedPros directory and discover the best contractors in your area.

Find your home service pro
Great renovations start with a great contractor.

Since 2004, TrustedPros has been helping homeowners find the right contractor for their home improvements and repairs.

Post Your Project

Within hours you'll be comparing offers from top-rated professionals. It's free to post and you're under no obligation to hire.

Trustedpros Inc. does not warrant the accuracy, completeness, safety, legality or usefulness of any Content, or Whether Content is Current and up-to-date, and TrustedPros Inc. Shall have no liability whatsoever with respect to your use or reliance upon any content or for content being removed or otherwise ceasing to be available. Please refer to the terms and conditions of use of this websites for more details.

Get Free Estimates

Post your project and compare offers from top-rated pros.