What is Indian Sandstone Paving?

Is Indian sandstone natural stone?

Indian sandstone as the name suggests is a natural stone quarried from all over India, a country with a rich and diverse geology – which is one reason this fascinating import is available in such a range of beautiful natural colours and finishes.

Like other kinds of sandstone, Indian sandstone is formed from the beds of sand under the sea or in low-lying areas on the continents. As these beds subside into the earth’s crust and are pressed down by overlying sediments, the sand is heated and compressed. Eventually minerals crystallize around the sand grains and cement them together into a sandstone.

It is all these properties that make Indian sandstone paving a prestigious natural stone. Its many excellent attributes will give you the look and durability of a much more expensive sandstone such as Yorkstone, yet for a fraction of the cost hence its popularity.

Is Indian sandstone good for driveways?

The properties you are looking for in stone suitable for a driveway would be hard wearing, good looking and low maintenance and Indian sandstone paving ticks all those boxes. An added bonus is its affordability.

Three reasons to use Indian sandstone for your driveway

1. It’s durable

Indian sandstone paving contains a high proportion of quartz crystals which not only makes it hard wearing but ensures it doesn’t fade. It is tough enough to withstand many kinds of pressure which is exactly what you want for a feature that will be driven and walked over practically every day and it won’t crack under extreme weather conditions. Another big plus point is that it has a non-slip quality, which means when it’s wet you won’t be skidding and sliding all over the place.

2. It looks good

A driveway is one feature that really needs to look good for that all important kerb appeal. After all it will be the first thing someone sees when they arrive at the building. Indian sandstone was formed millions of years ago under extreme heat and it’s the attractive pigmentation that makes it so striking. Plus you can choose from different kinds of colour and patterns to suit any kind of property, from uber-contemporary to quirky and rural.

3. Low maintenance

One huge advantage of Indian sandstone paving is that it is easy to keep in good order. If dirt does accumulate on your driveway then it will probably be washed away by the rain but if at any time you need to give it a good clean, a hose down every now and again should keep it looking tip-top.

Is Indian sandstone cheap?

Compared to other types of sandstone, Indian sandstone is a much more affordable option which works in its favour if you are creating a sizable driveway, or a patio feature. It’s cost-effectiveness makes it a popular choice, more so because you get the same look and quality from Indian sandstone paving as you do from any other kind, but with a lower price tag.

This is especially true of riven sandstone paving. Riven Indian sandstone paving is the cheapest option as the stone requires less treatment at the source to achieve the desired look and finish. Once again though you won’t be getting sandstone paving that’s of an inferior quality. A riven surface is created naturally when the stone is split along its natural layers, which actually gives it a beautiful authentic finish.

This process creates stunning natural variations in texture throughout the surface of each slab, meaning that no paver is exactly the same –  one of the main appeals of riven sandstone. This style of Indian stone paving is suited to traditional settings and is an excellent alternative to Yorkstone, but obviously at a great price point.

How to lay Indian sandstone paving

Clearly we love the properties of natural Indian sandstone, especially its aesthetic appeal but you need to lay it in the correct way for it to look its best time and time again.

1. Mark out the area you are paving.

After you’ve chosen where you’re laying your indian sandstone paving mark out the area using spray paint.

2. Dig a bed that’s 125mm deep

The marked out area should be dug to a minimum depth of 125mm, plus the depth of the paver and all topsoil should be removed as well as vegetation.

3. Make sure the soil is level by raking it and them compacting it before you move onto the next stage.

4. Add a 50mm sub-base layer.

Add sub-base material (Crushed Stone 40mm – dust) and repeat this process again so the sub-base has an overall depth of 100mm.  Ensure the area has falls that can cope with water runoff.

5. Prime the stone

You may want to wipe down the stone before you begin. Then prime the backs with  fine mortar slurry or with a preparation made for the purpose.

6. Mix your mortar

Create a mortar mix of four parts sand to one part cement and water. This should be of a “wet” workable consistency.

7. Spread the mortar

You need to spread this on thickly and levelled off to about 30mm thickness.

8. Lay the Indian sandstone paving

You can now start to lay the paving stone in the mortar bed leaving 8mm to 10mm spaces between them. You need to make sure they are firmly fixed by tapping them in with a rubber mallet before removing on.

9. Fill in the joints

Using a pointing tool, press in the mortar that’s four parts sand to one of cement, ensuring that they are all filled in and the paving is secure.

10. Wait 24 hours and voila!

Your Indian sandstone paving should be all set to give you pleasure for years to come.

How to seal Indian sandstone paving

Does Indian sandstone need to be sealed? The answer is yes. The main reason we would always advise sealing the slabs is to help to protect your stone from getting stained. One of the main properties of natural stone is it’s porous nature, which means it will absorb liquid from anything left on the surface. This may not be much of a problem if all you have to deal with is the odd downpour on your driveway or patio but it will become a much more serious issue if the sandstone is stained with motor oil or marked by grease from the BBQ. Even something as harmless as wet leaves or moss can leave behind stains so the  best bet is to be prepared!

You can seal your slabs two ways, One is before you lay them. This is a good option if you want them to be stain-resistant at the outset. In this way you aren’t taking any chances in case they get stained during the installation process from dirt or cement for example, or you can seal them once they’re in place.

The way in which you seal your Indian sandstone paving will differ depending upon the specific sealant you use. If you don’t know which sealant will be the best, your Premium Paving Company consultant will be more than happy to advise.

Begin by removing loose dirt, moss and  other debris from the surface of the slabs first and check that any marks are cleaned off before sealing to avoid them being sealed into the surface of the stone. Test the sealer on an inconspicuous area or off-cut first, to be sure that it will provide the results you need before treating the full area.

How to clean Indian sandstone

The simplest solution for this is to wash your sandstone frequently, however,  NEVER wash your sandstone when you think it might become frosty as that will shatter the slabs.

How to clean sandstone

You will get deposits on sandstone, making them look stained but with regular maintenance this can be avoided. Here are five ways to keep your sandstone looking tip-top:

1. Brush regularly

This will get rid of any surface debris and prevent algae or moss from building up.

2. Replace jointing sand

An easy way to stop any weeds from building up.

3. Wash with soapy water

This should help bring out the staining from your sandstone but for tougher stains you can use a mixture of bleach and water.

4. Scrape off weeds

This will prevent discolouration from growth such as moss.

5. Avoid cleaning solutions that contain acids

These acids could create rusting on the slabs so it is best to avoid these.

Three ways to clean sandstone

Cleaning Indian sandstone couldn’t be easier. It requires soapy water, or, if you have tougher stains as well as moss and algae, you can use bleach.

Cleaning with soapy water

You can use washing up liquid for this (do not use an acid based cleaning product). Just pour over the stone and then scrub with a brush. After washing, rinse away the soapy water and leave it to dry for around 24 hours. You may need to repeat the process if you don’t get rid of all the staining the first time around.

Cleaning with bleach

If you have a serious build-up of dirt and moss, or someone has built a glass of red wine on your beautiful patio (stuff happens!)  then you may need to use a bleach solution. After sweeping away any loose debris and making sure outdoor furniture is either removed or covered up, use equal parts of bleach and water and pour the solution onto the slabs. Leave this for around 30 minutes, then clean the surface with a stiff brush, power washer or a hose to ensure you’ve got rid of all the bleach.

Washing with a pressure washer

The high tech solution to cleaning is by pressure washer, which blasts the slabs with water to easily remove any discolouration.

Where is Indian sandstone best used?

Used for thousands of years for building, sandstone is one of the most durable, elegant and versatile materials around. For outdoor pathways and living areas, sandstone pavers have the kinds of natural yet rich colours that will enhance any space. You can get creative in various ways when beautifying your outdoor spaces with Indian sandstone so why not try these five practical ways to make use of sandstone in your home?

  1. Outdoor Paving

Sandstone is a preferred material for outdoor paving, not only because it has strong aesthetic appeal, but also because it’s highly durable. It can withstand extreme exposure to the elements and last a lifetime. Sandstone paving can look the same as it did on the day of installation even after 20 years. Sandstone needs little maintenance to retain its original condition, especially since the advent of high pressure water cleaners that can freshen the surface quickly and easily.

For outdoor living areas, the warm colours of sandstone harmonises with natural and modern colours. They also go very well with greenery, blending into the background and providing a good base for classic or modern garden designs and colour themes.

As they retain their colour so well, sandstone outdoor pavers can be used to line courtyards, patios, or balconies, and it can be used to build pathways and garden walkways.

  1. Garden Features

Indian sandstone paving is a wonderful way to create attractive garden features.

You could create capped and raised garden beds. These will add an extra dimension when planted with low shrubs.

Indian sandstone steps can also add interest to courtyard gardens, pergolas, patios, balconies, and other outdoor spaces. The durability of sandstone, it’s a very suitable material for building steps.

  1. Barbeques

Sandstone can even be used to build a barbeque that blends into the rest of the garden.

  1. Fire pits

Outdoor dining has now become a year round thing, hence the raise in popularity of the fire pit and the warm tones of Indian sandstone work beautifully for this on-trend feature.

  1. Pools

Sandstone is excellent for pool coping and surrounding areas, particularly traditionally chlorinated pools. Indian sandstone paving also holds up very well against water and because it is  ‘non-slip’ when wet is much safer and child-friendly.

  1. Cladded Ponds

As it can withstand exposure to water, Indian sandstone paving is also suitable for use around ponds or water features. The stone adds a luxurious and stylish appeal to gardens and outdoor features such as ponds.

Contact us

At The Premium Paving Company, we have built our reputation and rapport with global contacts over the past 15 years to ensure we are the UK’s paving supplier of choice.

If you are interested in finding out more about our Riven Indian Sandstone Range for your project, or would like a sample from our natural stone paving range, then don’t hesitate to get in touch with us today.


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