As you browse the web and visit DIY stores you’re bound to find a host of different suppliers offering natural stone paving. The UK market is huge so of course there are a large number of companies fighting for their share of the custom. Pricing varies hugely – so it’s important to do your research and understand what stone you’re buying.
At MKM we work closely with all of our suppliers. Our partnership with Stonemarket ensures we have confidence in the product we supply; it means we have true experts on hand to help us help you make an informed decision every time.
Stonemarket expert Roy Kendrick said
“Sandstones can appear the same when displayed at a merchant or in a brochure, but they do have different properties and can perform very differently when installed. Laboratory testing gives you a full picture of the technical quality of stone”.
So what are the pitfalls in purchasing natural stone? What should you be aware of when designing and purchasing your dream patio or outdoor space?
Three factors affecting natural stone include:
- Water absorbency
- Flexural strength
- Frost resistance
Quality issues with these factors mean:
Stones with high water absorbency will very likely turn green, and will be more susceptible to frost and therefore decay.
Poor strength stones damage very easily in transit – something to bear in mind when the majority of varieties come from India and China.
A British Standard has been introduced to regulate the quality of stone. (All stone supplied by MKM achieves this standard). BS7533 part 12 covers technical performance of stone and outlines a guide for the quality.
In recent research tests undertaken by Stonemarket, it was discovered that 50% of stone pavers purchased from a variety of suppliers did not meet the British Standard.
Look out for the ‘The Stone Standard’ trademark indicated the product has been tested across all Stonemarket products.
It pays to do your research on the pavers when longevity of your patio is important!