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Porcelain vs Natural Stone Patio Paving

Choosing the Right Material for Your Patio

Natural stone paving

When it comes to designing an outdoor living space, one of the decisions you will make is choosing the right type of patio paving material. Two popular options are porcelain and natural stone. Each has its advantages and disadvantages, so it's important to weigh them carefully before deciding.


Today we will dive deep into the porcelain vs natural stone patio paving slabs pros and cons so that you can be confident in your choice from the get-go! Get ready to make an informed decision and transform your outdoor space into a breathtaking oasis.


Porcelain vs Natural Stone Patio Paving. Blog Outline:


1. Durability.

  • Porcelain Paving

Porcelain pavers are made by pressing and firing a mixture of clay, feldspar, and other minerals at extremely high temperatures. This process causes the materials to fuse, creating a durable, hard-wearing material perfect for outdoor paving. Once the mixture is prepared, it is pressed under high pressure to create the desired shape and size of the pavers. The pavers are fired at temperatures ranging from 1200 to 1400 degrees Celsius to achieve the desired strength and durability.


During the firing process, the pavers may also be glazed to create a smoother surface and to add colour or design. This glazing process can also add a layer of protection to the pavers, making them even more resistant to scratches, stains, and other types of damage.

When the firing process is complete, the porcelain pavers are inspected for quality, packaged, and shipped to their final destination. Once installed, porcelain pavers require minimal maintenance and can withstand heavy foot traffic, harsh weather conditions, and even the occasional spilt drink or dropped plate.

  • Natural Stone

Natural stone slabs are known for their durability and strength. They are formed over millions of years from biological processes, which make them incredibly hard and resistant to wear and tear. Each type of natural stone has unique physical and chemical properties that determine its durability and suitability for different applications.


Granite, for example, is one of the most durable natural stones, with a high resistance to scratches and impacts. It is an excellent choice for high-traffic areas and outdoor spaces, as it is also resistant to weathering and staining. Sandstone, however, is a softer natural stone best suited for low-traffic areas like patios and garden paths.


Natural stone slabs can last for decades or even centuries with proper maintenance and care. However, it's important to note that natural stone is a porous material that can absorb water and other liquids if left untreated. This can lead to staining and damage over time. Regular sealing and cleaning are recommended to maintain the durability and appearance of natural stone slabs.


2. Aesthetics.

  • Porcelain Paving

Porcelain paving has become a popular choice for creating beautiful and durable outdoor spaces due to its consistent, printed surface that provides the look of natural stone. The printed surface on porcelain paving is designed to be fade-resistant and colourfast, ensuring it will maintain its beauty for years. Porcelain paving is available in a range of colours and textures, making it easy to mix and match different pieces or create an entire space with one style. With porcelain paving, you can create an outdoor space with a timeless look that will stand the test of time.


Porcelain pavers are known for their durability and versatility in creating a wide range of designs. However, while natural stone has riven surfaces that are created by splitting the rock into slabs, porcelain does not have this feature. Instead, it has printed designs that imitate the appearance of a riven stone. This makes porcelain tile easier to maintain and more resistant to staining than natural stone.

  • Natural Stone

Unlike other man-made materials, natural stone provides a truly authentic look that cannot be replicated. Its variations in colour, pattern, and texture create a one-of-a-kind look that is sure to stand out from other outdoor materials. From slab to slab, natural stone promises an outdoor area of charm and personality. With its timeless elegance, natural stone displays beautiful variations that will impress family and friends alike. Whether you're looking for a luxurious patio or an inviting pool deck area, natural stone is the perfect choice for adding character to your outdoor space.


3. Maintenance.

  • Porcelain Paving

Porcelain paving slabs require very little maintenance compared to natural stone. Porcelain is a non-porous material, which means it is less susceptible to stains and damage caused by weathering. This also means that it is effortless to clean and maintain. Regular sweeping or light pressure washing is typically all that is required to keep porcelain paving slabs looking their best. Additionally, since porcelain does not require sealing like natural stone, the maintenance requirements are further reduced.

  • Natural Stone

On the other hand, natural stone requires more maintenance than porcelain. Natural stone is a porous material, making it more susceptible to stains, scratches, and damage caused by weathering. It must be regularly cleaned and sealed to keep natural stone looking its best. This involves pressure washing, brushing, and sometimes treatments to remove stains and prevent further damage. Additionally, natural stone may require periodic repairs and damaged or broken slab replacement.


4. Price.


The cost of porcelain paving vs natural stone patio paving slabs can vary widely depending on the type of material, the size of the area to be paved, and the installation method. Generally speaking, porcelain paving can be more expensive than natural stone, but this can vary and is subject to the specific type of stone and porcelain used.

  • Porcelain Paving

Porcelain Paving prices range from around £27 to £90 or more per square meter. However, porcelain is more durable and long lasting, making it a more cost-effective option in the long run. The installation costs for porcelain paving are also usually higher than for natural stone, as the material is heavier and may require specialised cutting tools.

  • Natural Stone

Natural stone paving can range from around £24 to £50 per square meter for basic options like Indian sandstone or limestone and up to £130 or more per square meter for high-end options like granite or marble. The installation cost will also vary depending on factors such as site access and the design's complexity.

Porcelain patio paving

 

5. Porcelain vs Natural Stone Patio Paving. Summary.


Porcelain paving is made by pressing and firing a mixture of clay and other minerals at extremely high temperatures, resulting in a durable and low-maintenance material perfect for outdoor spaces. On the other hand, natural stone requires more maintenance but can provide a more natural and traditional look for your patio. Regarding cost, porcelain paving is generally more expensive than natural stone, but its durability can make it a more cost-effective option in the long run. Ultimately, choosing between porcelain and natural stone will depend on your preferences, design needs, and maintenance requirements.


Need to pave your patio in Bordon or surrounding areas?


Whether you're considering porcelain or natural stone paving, Yew Tree Landscapes, your local paving contractor operating in Bordon and surrounding areas, can help you make the right choice for your outdoor space. We specialise in providing high-quality patio paving solutions to suit any budget and design preference.


Our team of experts can offer advice on everything from material selection to installation and maintenance, ensuring that you get the best possible results. Don't hesitate to contact us today to request a quote or discuss your patio paving needs - we're always here to help!

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