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What is a plank paver?

Pavers are a popular choice for outdoor living spaces like patios, walkways, and driveways. They provide an attractive and durable surface that can withstand heavy foot traffic and weather extremes. Plank pavers are a unique style of paver that offers some distinct advantages over other paver shapes and styles.

What Are Plank Pavers?

Plank pavers get their name from their elongated, rectangular shape that resembles a plank or board. They are typically around 1.5-2 inches thick and up to 24 inches long. The long, linear shape provides a modern, contemporary look well-suited for modern landscape designs.

Plank pavers are installed on their side, with the long edge facing up. They are laid in a staggered pattern, with each plank offset from the ones around it. This creates a pleasing, staggered line pattern when viewed from above. The staggered rows lock the pavers together, providing stability and preventing shifting.

Advantages of Plank Pavers

There are several benefits that make plank pavers a popular paver choice:

  • Modern, contemporary appearance – The linear plank shape provides a sleek, contemporary look well-suited for modern landscape designs.
  • Staggered pattern – The staggered installation pattern locks planks together for maximum stability.
  • Easy cutting and shaping – Planks can be easily cut and shaped to fit curves or go around obstructions.
  • Fast installation – Their simple shape allows for faster installation compared to intricate paver styles.
  • Durable and stable surface – Planks lock together to resist shifting and settle evenly over time.
  • Good drainage – Water drains between the staggered plank joints.

Plank Paver Materials

Plank pavers come in a variety of materials to suit different landscapes:

Material Characteristics
Concrete Durable, affordable option available in many colors
Brick Classic material with traditional charm
Natural stone Elegant look, but higher cost and more maintenance
Porcelain Mimics look of natural stone but easier to maintain

Plank Paver Shapes

While the basic plank paver is a rectangular shape, there are some variations:

  • Standard planks – Rectangular planks with straight sides.
  • Beveled edge planks – Planks with one or both long edges beveled or angled for a more dynamic look.
  • Interlocking planks – Planks with knobs or grooves that fit together like puzzle pieces for added stability.

Typical Plank Paver Dimensions

Plank pavers come in a range of dimensions. Some typical sizes include:

Length Width Thickness
12 inches 4 inches 1.5 inches
16 inches 4 inches 2 inches
24 inches 4-6 inches 2 inches

Plank Paver Patterns

Plank pavers are installed in an interlocking staggered pattern for maximum stability. Some popular plank patterns include:

  • Basic staggered – Simple staggered rows with planks offset in alternating rows.
  • Herringbone – Rows oriented in opposite directions create a herringbone visual effect.
  • Basketweave – Pavers group in clusters that resemble woven baskets.
  • Pinwheel – Pavers radiate from a center point like pinwheel spokes.

Installing Plank Pavers

Proper installation is key to creating a durable, long-lasting plank paver patio or walkway. Here are some tips for installing plank pavers:

  • Dig out and prepare a 6-8 inch base of compacted gravel for drainage.
  • Add a 1-2 inch layer of sand. Smooth and level the sand.
  • Set plank pavers on the sand. Maintain 1/8-1/4 inch spacing between planks.
  • Tamp pavers with a rubber mallet to lock into place.
  • Spread joint sand over the surface and sweep into plank joints.
  • Compact finished surface with a plate compactor.
  • Seal surface with polymeric sand for improved durability.

Plank Paver Maintenance

Like all pavers, plank pavers require periodic maintenance. Recommended maintenance includes:

  • Keeping debris out of plank joints. Clean with a broom or leaf blower.
  • Spot treating stains and reapplying joint sand as needed.
  • Rinsing surface with water to prevent buildup in joints.
  • Annual inspection for damage, shifting, or uneven settlement.
  • Resealing joints with polymeric sand every 1-2 years.

Cost of Plank Pavers

Plank paver costs vary by material:

Material Average Cost per Square Foot
Concrete $2-$6
Brick $6-$12
Natural Stone $8-$20
Porcelain $8-$15

Installation costs typically add $5-$10 per square foot. Overall, most plank paver projects fall in the range of $10-$30 per square foot installed.


With their modern, staggered look, plank pavers offer a contemporary option for patios, walkways, pool decks, and driveways. Their elongated shape locks together for durability, easy installation, and good drainage. Plank pavers come in a range of materials and can be shaped into creative patterns. When properly installed and maintained, they provide an attractive, stable surface that can last for decades.