Travertine Pavers Installation

by Jeffrey
(Phoenix, AZ)

Can I dry lay travertine pavers over concrete?


I realize the border will have to be thinset, but do I have to thin set the field pavers? If I can dry lay the pavers, do I still need to place a bed of sand?


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Jun 29, 2016
Honed travertine pool deck on sand
by: Ryan

When it comes to maintenance of travertine how often should you have to spread more sand around the deck? Also. Is it common to have loose tiles and weeds growing in between tiles 14 months after install? I don't have a screen but I keep the deck clean. I recently sealed the deck 2 months ago.

Aug 10, 2015
Travertine Paver pool deck-never ending issues
by: Kristy

Hello
I am currently dealing with a very expensive travertine paver pool deck project that was completed a couple of months ago. We've been having numerous issues with finding loose pavers. It was so bad that the contractor actually redid the entire deck for us and there are still a few loose pavers. The process they did was laid rocks, then sand and then laid the pavers down and filled the joints with poly sand. For the patio area, they did not break the concert and just laid sand over it. The contractor is at a loss and is reaching out to the manufacturer of the polysand bc he said there is nothing wrong with the install job.

Nov 19, 2013
looking for andes 'devonshire'
by: mike

we installed a patio a few years ago, we have a few broken tiles and cant find replacements due to andes going out of business. does anyone know somebody who may still have some laying around.

Apr 09, 2013
Best way to clean travertine before sealing..
by: Crystal

I have a 700 sq ft travertine patio that was not sealed when laid. It is getting some mold and dirty looking. What is the best way to clean it and what products do you recommend for sealing. I wasn't sure if the power washer was too strong and would break apart the stone.

Jan 21, 2011
Travertine paver questions
by: On The Level Masonry LLC

Yes you can set the field dry! Simply screet out a thin even base of silica sand before you set the pavers. When you get to the borders set those with thinset on concrete or set over dirt with mortar. If you have any questions regarding travertine pavers please feel free to contact me at onthelevelmasonry@live.com

Jun 26, 2009
Travertine Pavers - Over Concrete
by: Unique Landscapes




Travertine Pavers are one of the hottest new fads in outdoor patios and outdoor living. My company, Unique Landscapes by Griffin (In Mesa, AZ) - specializes in all aspects of paver & travertine paver installations. We've done numerous projects that involve overlays over existing concrete patios (both with tile, concrete pavers, and travertine pavers) - THE ONLY issue i've ever had with putting travertine over concrete is that they tend to "wobble" and sound "hollow" after installation if laid DRY (no sand or thinset). To counteract this end result, you can use either a light layer of sand, to help CUSHION the pavers. At Unique, we started investing in about $100 of cheap thinset, and actually dabbing a small amount of thinset to each paver prior to setting them in their pattern - it works BETTER than sand, somewhat easier (since you just apply and set) - it's 10X easier than laying tile (since pavers are more forgiving, and you don't have to worry about grout joints!)




Jun 23, 2008
Travertine Installation
by: Susan

Travertine pavers are meant to be dry laid, not set over concrete. The correct installation method is to have a layer of quarry type stone, 4" to 6" thick on undisturbed ground. Masonry sand is then placed on the next layer above the stone. Then the travertine pavers get laid on top of this.

Do not lay the travertine pavers on sand on top of a layer of concrete. The purpose of the quarry stone is to allow for drainage, which the concrete will not do.

As far as installing them as a mortared project, I do not know if this can be done. I would check with the manufacturer or distributor. If you want to lay travertine on existing concrete, you might be better off with travertine tile, as opposed to pavers. Tiles are supposed to be laid in concrete. However, the existing concrete must have been layed properly and have no cracks, settling, etc.

I am not familiar with your situation, but if you are going through the expense of installing travertine, and you want to use the pavers, I would suggest removing the concrete and installing them using the correct procedure.

Once again, check with the manufacturer or distributor.

Regards,
Susan

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Travertine Pavers and Pool Tile

by Suzanne

Hello,
I was reading your advice to someone who was using travertinepavers for their pool deck. I am just about to start mine with tumbled pavers and am having a heck of a time deciding on what kind of waterline "tile" to use.

I am doing a simple rectangular pool in the back of our house, overlooking 40 acres of horse farms. I think I want a neutral color tile, but think "marble looking" ceramic tile won't look good with the travertine (real vs. fake).

In your experience, what looks good on the water line with travertine decking?
By the way, I'm using the tumbled stone as my coping, it's very smooth and about half the cost of the bullnosed pieces.

ANSWER

Thanks for contacting me.

I have had two clients recently who have used travertine pavers and had to make the decision about pool tiles. Both turned out great.
A large part of your decision should be what color the interior of the pool will be.

Some interior colors are more blue-green, while others are more blue. Once client decided on the blue-green interior and chose a tile that was a pale blue with some tan running through it. It looked very nice. The other client chose more of a Caribbean blue, and chose a rather solid cobalt blue. It looks beautiful!

See if you can get a sample of the interior color, along with the travertine, and hold them with the possible tiles. I agree....the travertine has enough interest that you don't want the tile to be too busy.

I hope this was helpful.
Susan

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Apr 07, 2017
Travertine
by: Anonymous

Hi There, we just laid a tumbled travertine patio/deck around our pool. We live in Dallas. Over the 6 months since it has been laid almost instantly we saw it starting to discolor and become green and dark in the tumbled part of the travertine (the holes). While we know its a natural stone it doesn't look great. We had it power washed and it helped, but the stone is still discolored. I had a bunch of "experts" out and they said that moisture is being held underneath the stone and that's why it is coming up. I was also told by one to have it sealed with a "densefier" and a "sealer". This was very expensive and they couldn't guarantee that it still wouldn't happen.

Please let me know what you recommend and what also can I use a mild bleach on my travertine to get rid of the dark color in the holes?

Thank you,

Pam

Jan 21, 2015
Pool chemical's influence
by: Karen

Being Travertine a sedimentary rock like marble, what will be the effect over time of all the pool chemicals? Chlorine vapor can with time eat the material, don't you think?

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Travertine Around The Pool

by Andrea

Using Travertine Around The Pool

My husband and I are re-doing our backyard. We had to put up new retaining walls. We used a gray block and will be putting Blue stone on the covered Patio. Our house is brick colonial.

I'm thinking of using Travertine around the pool??? Blue stone would be to hot. I'm concerned Travertine might not work with what we have & it will be too dressy? I was thinking 18 x 18 since we have a random pattern for the blue stone and I don't want it to clash. Any advice would be great. It seems like you like Travertine for pools.

ANSWER

Yes, I do like travertine around the pool, but I also am a stickler for different materials looking well together.
I did a pool project where there was a brick house, stone walls, stone risers and bluestone treads. I just made sure all the colors blended nicely together and it was a smashing success.

Based on your brick home, bluestone porch and gray block walls, I think one of the gray travertine pavers would look nice. The color would blend with what you have on site already. I know what you mean about thinking travertine is "dressy", but two things.

First it is still a natural stone, so it can't be bad. Second, it has a rather smooth surface and this would be a nice contrast to the brick and block walls.

The key is to be sure to get quality travertine...minimal holes and lots of character.

Here are some ebooks that I wrote with my clients in mind.




Patio Plans For Inspiration
See actual patio plans that I did for some of my clients. Both 3D and plan view designs are shown so that you can use them or get ideas for your own project. Explanations are also provided.











Landscaping Costs
Find out what actual parts of a landscape cost. Plants, different paving materials, steps, pools, ponds, lighting, and more are all listed along with many photos to show examples!







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Travertine Pavers - Quality and Longevity


(California)

I am planning to install travertine pavers in my backyard. They certainly look very grand & we fell in love with them. But I have a few concerns.

The pavers are usually pitted. Do these pits/ holes enlarge over a period of time when rain/ pool water stays in the pits? I do plan to seal them.

What is the long-term durability?

Should I be concerned about the travertine cracking due to the freeze-thaw cycle? Besides, this travertine will be around a salt-water pool system. Would salt be a problem as well?

The travertine that we plan to order comes from Peru. Is the quality better than the one from mexico? Please help. I can't find proper information anywhere. Thanks in advance.

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Nov 11, 2012
How to handle travertine holes
by: Alex

I have travertine in my first floor, they are grouted holes. We had some voids break out during the first year but then none since ~4yrs. I am doing travertine pavers on my patio now, there are holes some say don't fill them. Definiitely do not use polymer sand, this will not last. I am going to grout them, not the joints, and then seal. It will be a delicate job once they are down, but should be fine after a couple months once any loose grout is swept off, then for the sealing.

The travertine should stand up fine to any patio wear and tear, has in the Mediterranean for centuries.

From Susan
Alex...I am assuming you are talking about filling the holes with grout. I would say that how that holds up depends on where you live and how much freeze thaw you have. If you are in a cold climate, you might be better off just leaving the holes as they are. The outside is different than the inside due to temperature shifts. Good luck.

Jun 15, 2012
I have some of the same quesstions.
by: Anonymous

We are in Houston and worry about how hot the travetine will be in full sun around the pool which is also saltwater. I did read that flagstone is not good around a saltwater pool. The other issue is the colletion of dirt and or mold in the holes and crevices in the stone. We currently have cooldeck which is cool but wears away with powerwashing to keep the dirt and mold out of it.

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Travertine Paver Patio & Walkway Designs

We have a covered patio and open patio side by side in our backyard with a chiseled edge random pattern travertine floor. We want to transition off the patio, out through the yard, about 25 feet or so to lead to a stacked stone fire pit. What material do you suggest for this project? Also, what shape, width, etc. We are concerned about having a smooth transition. Our landscaping is fairly formal - English garden-ish style I guess would describe it best.

ANSWER

You might consider creating a bluestone walkway. Consider bluestone of all one size, rather than random sizes. This way it won't fight with the travertine pattern. Eighteen inch or twenty four inch squares would work. If the walk turns out to be curvilinear, the edges should be saw cut to make a beautiful curve.

I think this would be a nice transition, as the bluestone walk should go well with both the existing travertine patio and the stacked stone fire pit.

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Travertine Freeze Thaw and Swimming Pool Decking

by Mary
(Utah)

We are worried about travertine, freeze thaw and using it for swimming pool decking. We live in Salt Lake City, Utah, where there is a moderately cold winter with snow, freeze-thaw, etc. We love the look of the travertine for our pool deck but are concerned about cracking due to the holes in the travertine (i.e., snow melts, fills holes, freezes and cracks). Your thoughts?

Also, we are having a hard time finding anyone around here that has more than just a few samples of travertine, and the quality doesn't seem very good.

Thanks,
Mary


SUSAN'S REPLY
Hi Mary,
Thanks for contacting me and also for visiting my site.
Travertine pavers will hold up in cold climates and is known for its resistance to freeze-thaw conditions. I would not worry about it.

I like the Andes Collection because their travertine pavers are high quality. There are a minimal amount of holes in the stones and they are beautiful. I did one project (which was pool decking) with the Manchester color in the London design and it was breathtaking.



MARY'S REPLY
Thank you so much for replying! We feel better about going with the travertine now. I have a couple of additional questions, if you don't mind answering.

(1) Someone told us that chlorine is tough on the coping, and if travertine is used it needs to be sealed. Have you heard of a need to seal travertine,
either coping or otherwise?

(2) We heard that tumbled is more susceptible to freeze thaw, and that honed, sealed travertine might be the best way to address this problem. But we like the tumbled or slightly tumbled better. Thoughts?

(3) Would you ever rely on photos, rather than only looking at sample pavers? We are in a little bit of a time crunch and after looking at quite a bit of travertine online and some in person, we are thinking about maybe ordering without real samples if its from a reputable source..

Again, thanks for your response, its really nice that you have taken the time to talk with someone who's so far away and doesn't present the prospect
of work for you and your company!


SUSAN'S REPLY
Hi Mary,
To answer your questions...
1. They sell a lot of travertine coping, which is actually a pool bullnose with smooth edges towards the water's edge, so I wouldn't worry about the chlorine. As far as sealing goes, that is optional. What it
does, is help prevent staining and it also brings out the color. Imagine wiping a stone with a damp rag, and that's what the travertine will look like. There is no shine, by the way. If it were my one project, I would
seal them.

2. I never heard that tumbled was more susceptible to freeze-thaw conditions. Good quality travertine pavers are more refined looking than the tumbled. I actually much prefer them (not tumbled) because they have less holes. Another difference is that the edges are straight, rather than being rough and wavy....I like this better. I've seen it both ways.

3. I love the Manchester color and the London pattern. It's a rather"carmel" color and beautiful. That being said, it may not go with your house or surroundings or you may not like it for some reason. The travertine pavers will be a big investment, and I would take the time to get a sample. Don't let anyone rush you. If you like, maybe offer to pay for fast shipping if possible. That would be my suggestion.

If you have any other question, just ask, and let me know what happens!


MARY'S REPLY
Susan,
You have been very helpful. I believe carmel would look great with our house, but completely agree with you about getting a sample. We'll keep you
updated. Thanks again for sharing your knowledge.
Mary

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Travertine Stone - Can Travertine Be Used In a Salt Water Pool?

by John
(Australia)

Hi Susan,

I got your contact from the "findstone forum". I am after some advice on travertine stone.

We are in Perth Western Australia and am currently building a new home. We have built a pool that is 12m x 4 m with an infinity edge and would like to use travertine on this edge. It would have travertine on the top of the infinity edge wall and and the front wall. We also want to use travertine as the borderline tile in the pool (at the tile line).

While most people we have spoken to agree that it will be fine on the infinity edge and the wall, being used as a border tile could be a problem, as it will be always immersed in salt water. This salt water could attack the fill that they us to fill the holes. I would appreciate any help you can give me.

ANSWER

Hi John,
I had someone ask me a similar question recently...using travertine tiles at the water line in a salt water pool. So I searched for some answers.

First of all, not all travertine has holes that are filled. The better quality travertine has minimal holes and many are not filled. If you are worried about the salt water being a problem for the fillings, then you can use unfilled travertine. I really don't know the effect otherwise.

More of a concern is how the travertine is installed, ie., what type of adhesive is used. It was recommended to me that an epoxy should be used but the manufacturer should test their product with the particular travertine you are using. Sounds like a lot of work, but less work than if it all fails!

This recommendation came from one of the owners of a reputable travertine company in the U.S. and his partner actually had this system.
He used 2 x 2 inch mosaic squares. This may not be the size you are using, but the main point is that the adhesive should be tested for use in a pool. By the way, the entire pool interior was done in travertine
with no plaster!

I hope this information, although not complete, will help you.

Susan

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Travertine Stone

by Chris
(New Jersey)

Should I consider travertine stone?

I am getting ready to have a pool built and am doing a lot of research on what type of patio to do around the pool. Because I want natural stone, my choices have come down to travertine or bluestone. I would really like the patio to be wet laid because I want the look of the tiles grouted, but in my research I have not come across anyone who has wet laid a travertine patio.

I live in New Jersey where we will get some good freeze/thaw cycles. So can anyone give me some advice on wet laying and grouting a travertine pool patio?

ANSWER

Hi Chris,
I don't know if it is the strength of certain stones, but you are correct in finding out that travertine stone tiles are not used often, if any, in New Jersey. There are also other natural stones and tiles which you see used in other areas of the country that are not used up north.

If anyone disagrees with this, or knows differently, please post a comment.

Unless you can find out differently, I wouldn't use travertine tiles wet laid where you live. Again, just my opinion. I wouldn't take the chance with a client's project.

Bluestone is generally not used for pool paving because it is very hot. It makes better sense to stay with a pool decking material that is comfortable.

I have two suggestions for you.
1. Consider using travertine pavers which are thicker than travertine tiles and can be dry laid. I understand you like the look of mortared joints, but this paving material and type of installation can be very beautiful. Take a look at the projects on my page Travertine Pavers and Travertine Stone. There is matching bullnose/coping available and this would be mortared where you would see the concrete joints.

2. You can use a different stone and use the wet laid application. One I have seen used in New Jersey is Idaho Quartz. It is very strong, beautiful and not hot. It does have a slight "glitz" to it" but it is a great stone. They were natural shaped stones and I am not sure if they come in regular, geometric shapes.

You might give Wicki Stone in Great Meadows a call. They might carry it. They are also a great informational source for natural stones.

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Slippery Travertine Stone

by Trang
(California)

I have installed travertine stone outside (front door), and now it's slippery when it rains. What should I do to get rid of or minimize the slippery conditions?
Thanks.

ANSWER
I am more familiar with travertine pavers, which are not slippery. From what I have read, travertine tiles can be polished, and when done so they become slippery.
I found this site for you.

http://www.slip-resistant-solutions.com/Fix-slippery-travertine-floors.html

It's worth a try. However, if you have any leftover travertine pieces, I would do a test on those first.

Here is a page on my site where I discuss the different types of travertine, regarding honed, filled, tumbled, etc.
Travertine Stone

Good luck.
Susan

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Travertine Paver Questions

by Denise
(Texas)

What do you put between the travertine pavers?

The pool company said that the polymeric sand will fill in the natural holes in the travertine and I like the holes. They suggested just sand. What are your thoughts?

Also, should I purchase through the pool company?

Thanks,
Denise

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Travertine Stone For Pool - Should We Use Sealer and Will They Crack?

QUESTION 1

Our contractor just finished laying travertine for our pool decking and coping. I would like to know if we should use a sealer? Also we are very concerned about the freeze thaw cycles. Can the travertine stone actually crack being that it is so porous?
------------------------------------------------

ANSWER

Did you use travertine pavers (dry laid, I hope) or travertine stone
tile?
------------------------------------------------

QUESTION 2

What's the difference between pavers and stone?
My contractor put travertine on concrete for the coping only. The rest of the deck he used dark grey fine stone (much coarser than sand) with gravel below that.
I also have a cabana. Concrete floor -> grey fine stone -> travertine. The joints are not filled yet.
Is this dry-laid?

---------------------------------------------------

ANSWER

1. Pavers are thicker than tile and meant to be dry laid. It sounds like you have the pavers and they were dry laid. This is good.
2. Travertine coping pavers must be set in concrete. Your contractor did this....good also.
3. Not sure what's going on in your cabana.

So...getting back to your original question about sealing. This is a personal preference. It brings out the color and provides a protection, although it must be re-applied every few years. If it were my project, I
ould seal it.

One of the best things about travertine pavers is that they resist freeze-thaw conditions, so I would not worry about them cracking.

----------------------------------------------------
----------------------------------------------------
Thanks. I also think sealing is better. I would also like to bring out some of the beauty of travertine and I think that the sealer will do the job.

As far as freeze thaw....you just made me feel a lot better. I was very worried. Didn't do my research before and now that the stone is laid I
come up with all these questions and worries.
Thanks again for putting my mind to rest.

ANSWER

Sealer
by: Austin

I would use sealer, Dupont makes a special sealer for salt water pool systems to prevent spalling of natural stone and mansonry. You can buy it at www.levantinausaec.com








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Travertine Sealers

I am wondering if you recommend using travertine sealers on travertine. I am thinking of laying a travertine pool decking around my swimming pool and wondering whether it needs sealing. If we don't seal it, will it soon become dirty and stained? I don't mind the weathered look, but at the same time, worry that oil, cream, etc. may stain it. Thanks.

ANSWER

Travertine sealers will bring out the color of the travertine and also help protect the stones from stains. They are optional, but I would do it. They have more of a chance of staining without it and there is really no reason
not to. It doesn't make the stone shiny, if that is what you are thinking. Imagine wiping the stone with a damp rag, and that is the way it will look.

Susan

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Pool Patio Pavers | Travertine

by Paulene

Hi,

Love your site! Such great info! I was wondering if you could provide some helpful suggestions for us.

We installed a small in ground pool due to our small backyard. We have an existing EP Henry patio in Harvest Blend pavers. We are now trying to decide how we want to finish the pool decking. The space is so close together that I feel they should uniformly flow together.

I REALLY LOVE the Travertine pavers for the pool deck but not sure how that will or if it will tie in with the Ep Henry patio. We cannot afford to add the expense of redoing the patio in Travertine to match right now. Do you have any suggestions? Should we do the Travertine for pool deck or continue the Ep Henry from patio onto the pool deck? I have never been happy with the patio due to how the pavers fade. I appreciate any help you may have. I do have some photos if it would help.

Thanks,
Paulene

ANSWER

Hi Paulene,
Thanks for the compliments on my site!

I understand your dilemma. Probably the pavers and the travertine will not look that great together, particularly if they are near each other. And it doesn't sound like very much fun to add more pavers if you are not happy with them.

If you think you will be able to replace the pavers in the future, and you love the travertine, why don't you select a travertine color that looks best with your surroundings/house and use that? Perhaps there would be a color that looks decent with the pavers also so that it would be an acceptable solution for now. If the colors blend, it might be OK.

I am working on a pool project and travertine has just been installed. I cannot begin to describe how absolutely beautiful it is. In addition, it's cool on your feet.

I hope this was helpful!

Susan

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Outdoor Pergola and Travertine

by Marian

Where can I find a picture of a pergola with a contemporary design (to attach to my house? Also, is travertine tile okay for use with a contemporary design (if so, which style of tiles)?

Thanks so much, great site.
Marian

ANSWER

Hi Marian,
I am not sure where to send you for that. Pergolas are typically more traditional. However if you were to make the columns simple, I would think you would achieve a more contemporary look.

Travertine can certainly be used with what you have in mind. Have you considered travertine pavers instead of travertine tile? They are beautiful, very thick and can also be dry laid as opposed to laid in concrete.

This is a much easier installation, less expensive, and very forgiving. By forgiving I mean that if by chance the travertine pavers ever move, they can be easily picked up and re-adjusted. When travertine tile is set in concrete with concrete grout, there is always a chance of the concrete cracking over time. I am not saying this will occur, just that it is possible.

I don't know what else is in your landscape or what type of siding is on your house (or color), so it's difficult to recommend any travertine pattern (whether tile or pavers) or color.

I hope this has helped you.
Susan

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Are There Disadvantages to Travertine Pavers?

by Drew
(Florida)

I have asked a local stone/granite company about using travertine around my pool area. He did not advise it as he said they are prone to discoloration when in the shade and do collect mildew.

He also said the holes in the tumbled travertine trap the water and contribute to discoloration. He recommended slate around the pool as (he stated) it would hold up much better. (He does not sell either travertine or slate). Thanks for the response as we are about one week deciding between concrete pavers or travertine.

ANSWER

Hi Drew,

That is the most ridiculous and erroneous information I have heard. Sometimes people are confused about travertine, but that info is just plain wrong.

Let's talk about travertine pavers, as that is what I would suggest. This is because they can be easily dry laid like concrete pavers. Travertine does not discolor. It is a natural stone that maintains its beauty. It doesn't matter if it is in the sun or shade. If you get a quality travertine, the holes will be minimal.

I have written a page on travertine, explaining the differences in various types and I discuss quality. Here is the link. Travertine Pavers

Travertine pavers are one of the nicest materials you can use around a pool. I never recommend slate or bluestone for pool paving since they get very hot.


Tumbled pavers can look nice too and typically less expensive, but travertine pavers are special.
Please visit my page on Concrete Pavers

I hope this helped.
Susan

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Tumbled Travertine and Grout

by John
(California)

I've just put in a DIY back patio with dry-laid travertine pavers (in a french pattern, over 4" base rock + 1" topping sand).

They are tumbled so the edges and corners are slightly rounded off, and the surface is un-filled. It looks great now, but I'm concerned about how to keep dirt from getting into the many open nooks and crannies of the pavers.

Grout might work well to fill the holes but seems like a bad idea since it would also tend to glue adjacent edges, creating what I imagine would be longer term headaches as things settle into place over the seasons. Sand probably wouldn't help keep dirt out of the holes but at least wouldn't be locking the edges together.

Any ideas? Thanks in advance!

ANSWER

Hi John,
Here is my opinion.
The beauty of tumbled travertine pavers is that they are not perfect. It is a natural stone, and therefore will have lots of imperfections. Actually I don't really think of them as imperfections but part of the charm.
I am sure it looks beautiful.

There are actually two issues. One is the areas where the travertine pavers join each other. Some areas might look like the joints are tight, while other areas, such as at the rounded corners, may seem to have spaces there.

The other issue is any "holes" that might be in the tumbled pavers.

I am a little unclear as to whether you are talking about one, the other, or both. So let me address everything for you.

The holes in the travertine pavers will most likely not accumulate that much dirt. Whatever does get in there I don't think will be that noticeable. In addition, you can always power wash them.

Regarding the joints, what is generally acceptable practice is to sweep the joints with polymeric sand. This is a type of sand that hardens in a short period of time, so it won't have to be redone. Most likely some of this will even get into the holes, which wouldn't be bad either.

If you have any other questions, just let me know. I hope this was helpful

Regards,
Susan

By John

Hi Susan,

Thanks for the quick reply! It rings a bell that I now remember seeing a display of what must have been polymeric sand at a local stone suppliers. I'll head back there to find out more.

Also I'll give more thought to not worrying about dirt accumulating in the nooks & crannies, since as you point out its those unique imperfections that make natural stone so inviting.

And... I have really enjoyed reading through your website for patio & landscaping ideas. It's actually what got me inspired to go with dry-laid travertine and I'm glad I did. I already loved the look of travertine, but what made the decision easy it was your enthusiastic comments about it, including those about it staying cool in the sun and still having good wet traction. It's also a nice a reminder of past trips to Italy and especially Rome & Tivoli:-)

Thanks again,
-John

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Travertine - Chiseled and Polymeric Sand

by Holly

Hi,
I am looking at the travertine pavers for a big pool deck. The contractor suggested the chiseled edge 6 by 12 in a herringbone. Is the chiseled edge good for the pool area?

Also I asked him about the polymeric sand and he said it wasn't good for travertine? I'm confused...is it ok for travertine?

Thanks for your help.
Holly

ANSWER

Hi Holly,
In all honesty, I would suggest speaking with another contractor.

I don't like the travertine pavers with the chiseled edge. The beauty of these pavers are that they look like natural stone, and a chiseled
edge changes that look. My opinion, anyway.
But more important is that he is not knowledgeable about the filling materials. Polymeric sand is the way to go. More and more companies are offering it and it is recommended by the Andes Collection in their installation instructions. It was used on a project I was involved in and it was great.

Note/Update: I have decided through the years that polymeric sand is not my filler of choice. Please visit this page here. I have seen it used successfully, but there reasons I do not like it. Polymeric Sand

Regards,
Susan

How do I clean up Polymeric sand on Travertine
by: BLD in Milwaukee


I'm glad to hear that someone did recommend the polymeric sand as I just used it on my 3-year old travertine patio. I was afraid the stone company sold me the incorrect grout fill. But, I'm not happy with the results. The extra sand that didn't get broomed off or blown off with a leaf blower, is not stuck to the surface of the travertine, and looks dirty, not to mention uncomfortable on the feet. Is there a good way to remove the excess sand or clean the travertine surface?

I guess I didn't realize it was going to dry like a hard glue, so now if I need to lift one of the tiles, it will be a lot more work.

Any suggestions?

ANSWER

It has its good points, but basically as you are finding out, you are better off with a sand filler. Many contractors love it, but it can cause problems also. See the link above to Polymeric Sand.

Comments for Travertine - Chiseled and Polymeric Sand

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Mar 17, 2017
Pavers breaking down
by: Phil

I have a beautiful, large, tumbled, white travertine patio around my salt water pool. It is 4 years old. It was initially sealed, but it was too white, so I coated it again with a high gloss sealer. That made the beauty of the stone more apparent. The sealer is now flaking badly, as the sealer peals off and some entire stones are "breaking down" or disintegrating where the surface is almost now completely gone. What causes the breaking down of the surface on a few pavers? This is happening to about 4 pavers scattered amidst a 60' x 40' patio.

Jun 16, 2012
Mold on Travertine Pavers in less than 30 days
by: Anonymous

We just had a very expensive patio re-done (we dug up and redid the pool as well). We purchased the highest grade premium tumbled travertine pavers from one one of the largest suppliers in Florida. In less than 30 days, we already have mold growing on the travertine. Even premium tumbled travertine has holes - and that, of course, is where the water sits & the mold grows. We live in Florida and it rains practically every day for a brief period in the afternoon. Given the amount of mold we are already seeing -- I can only imagine what will happen after a year. You had noted to other posters this would not likely be a big issue. Well -- it sure is and not insignificant. We're now exploring sealing the travertine in the hopes this will help protect against mold. I might add the mold is even growing in the pavers that are exposed to the sun.

ANSWER
I have not heard of that being a problem. If you have a very wet situation and not enough sun, those are conditions for mold to grow. Is your area lacking sun?

There is travertine out there with minimal holes. Either the travertine comes that way or they fill the holes in the factory. I have heard about it both ways and have seen it too, although I don't know if they were filled or the travertine was natural..

I would definitely try sealing them. This will help prevent the water from being absorbed.




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"Susan,  what a pleasure it was to work with you.  You made me feel like I was your only client - responding late at night and always so quickly!  Your design is amazing and we only hope we can do justice to it when we plant.  You have such fantastic ideas and you are so open to suggestions and changes.  Loved working with you - now if you could only come to Canada and plant it!!!"
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