What can I do about sunken pavers that flood when it rains?

by Sherrie

Outside of my screen porch is an area of pavers that tend to flood when it rains. It has only gotten worse in the two years since I bought the house.

  9 answers
  • You really need to create a good base for them. You would have to pull them all up and lay down some new gravel underneath, preferably one that drains well to stop this.

  • Dale N. Dale N. on Jul 19, 2018

    dig them up, fill with several yards of granite gravel (as Hayden said) and then relay your pavers. perhaps leaving a tiny space between each paver for better drainage. i did this very thing as an extension to my driveway. the space between pavers makes for easy drainage and no flooding.

  • Boatwire Boatwire on Jul 20, 2018

    If you don't want to pull them ALL up and gravel the ENTIRE area, consider this: Start in the center of the area that puddles-up and lift out two (2) of the pavers. Using a post-hole digger, dig out about 3 ft. of soil. Fill the post hole with rocks and replace those pavers. Move outward 3 or 4 ft. in each direction and repeat the process.

  • Jan Clark Jan Clark on Jul 20, 2018

    I see that the yard beyond the paved area slopes down toward the pavers. In order to make all that work of filling with gravel and replacing the pavers, consider setting a French drain under there to send the runoff water away from the house (and preferably toward a storm drain). They are quite easy to install - just go to your "big box" home store and find them in the plumbing section near the PVC pipes. Using a drain will also keep mosquitoes and other water loving bugs away from your yard.

    • See 1 previous
    • Dwp7470b Dwp7470b on Aug 14, 2018

      I noticed the same: the patio itself has more than 6 different slopes and the photo #1 reveals where the water mostly sits.

      Because it doesn't sit in the center, nor on the entire all the suggestions of stones beneath, pipes beneath, etc, are all in vain. The patio is not the source of the problem. This needs to revamp the entire form of the region around it so that the water is not flowing from the landscape onto the patio. A Step up Patio by reducing all the regions around it by 3" often can make a world of difference. As far as the unevenness of the blocks, that explains by the weeds and grass have different sized roots and will force those out of place. Those weeds and grass need to die before that project is finished. Vinegar+RockSalt may not help more than lift up each block and dig out the weeds with a pitchfork.

      As firstly you look at that picture, what is missing?

      A curb all around the patio.

      When that is the case, that you gotta lift all the pavers, you may as well consider:

      Do we really like that patio in that trouble area, or Do we prefer it somewhere else, with less trouble, much better?

      Although many resolves exist, [such as: 200lbs of Rock Salt beneath those pavers after you place a 5 inch Curb], facts are:

      When all nontemporary resolves entail that ya gotta move a Patio, you may as well just move the patio, plant a tree where the patio was, start over, and consider it Done, by doing the work, getting it right once, to last for decades, rather than do 1/2 that work every 5 years til ya die.

      Getting it right? Always involves alot of work to reduce the long term work.

      Resolve to plant a Tree where the wetness is to make good use of the moisture, After you concentrate on excavating where you actually want that patio.

      This involves Mixed Stone and Sand and Salt as the base Layer placed at the Clay Layer [you may optionally heat with a flamethrower, or a Bic Lighter and Lemon Pledge, until that clay is like bricks], and you place that stone over the Sand that secures 4 Dispersion Pipes connect like an X. You add your last phase of Stone over that, to place your 4 Corner Patio Blocks in that Area that will be Free of Water and Weeds, for as long as you maintain that Clean and with a very high PH That nothing green survives.

      After that, you frame out those 4 corners to pour a Curb.

      Shape of that curb matters not, keeping thise 4 corners cornered is what matters.

      Once that curb Sets, you can place your other blocks, side by side, be that inside a cement oval curb or inside 4 Circles as Curbs or inside a large Sexagon, or even Checkerboarded with a Smaller 36 Block Solid Color in the Center, it all looks so much better than:

      Wet Bland Square Patio in a quite hopeless condition of severely uneven greenness, all caused by the roots of undergrowth and weeds, which caused by 'the lack of a curb allows grass clippings, spores, dandelion seeds, moss etc to get in, die, rot and become soil for the next seeds', which all began 7 to 15 years ago, when the quite Bland Square Patio initially misplaced...

  • Amanda Amanda on Jul 20, 2018

    Hi Sherri. The best thing to do would be to pull them all up and redo it. That is a lot of work though. You could try to dig a trench on each side of the walkway and fill it with rock. Good Luck!

  • Rockyroad Rockyroad on Jul 21, 2018

    As mentioned by others , starting over is really your only option . Most important issue is making sure base , gravel topped w/ stonedust or coarse sand , is very well compacted to avoid future settling / sinking .

  • Cheryl Gillman Cheryl Gillman on Jul 22, 2018

    As mentioned you would need to build it up underneath so they aren't sitting so low, also if you are able to you could put a drainage pipe directed away from that spot (you may need to dig a trench with the end you want the water to flow placed lower than where the water is going to drain from) make sure it goes far enough away that it won't just seep back into that spot though.

  • Jeanette S Jeanette S on Jul 22, 2018

    Sherrie, over time pavers may sink ever so slightly below grade.

    These need to come up and perhaps a bit of attention paid to making sure there is a slight slope away from this area. You can create a slight slope away from this area by removing a little of the soil from all three sides of the area.

    If this is a space you want to have with pavers again, fill in with a little dirt and lay a concrete footing on which to relay your patio, making sure it is level with the grass which slopes slightly away.

  • Johnavallance82 Johnavallance82 on Jul 28, 2023

    LIFT thePaviers and lay a Level Concrete Base ( very slightly sloping away from house) then bed paviers on top or lay slabs.