Three features of concrete sand that make it ideal for laying paving slabs

There are many different types of sand that can be used in building projects. One type of sand that you might come across is concrete sand, which is also known as sharp sand. This has different properties to other types of sand which makes it suitable for particular purposes, in particular for use as a base for paving slabs. Here are some of the reasons why it is suitable for this purpose.


Firstly, the individual grains in concrete sand are shaped differently from other types. Many sands have smooth grains that flow easily against each other. Concrete sand, by contrast, has irregularly shaped grains with jagged edges. This means that the grains tend to lock against each other and stay in place rather than flow smoothly past. The result of this is that the sand makes a much stronger mix when it is included in concrete as it binds together so well. Concrete made with sharp sand is therefore ideal for applications that require a strong base, such as a foundation layer underneath a driveway or paving slabs.


A second difference between grains of concrete sand and other types is the size of the grains. Concrete sand is made of larger grains which means there will be more gaps between the grains. Because of this, concrete sand allows more water to pass through it and therefore has excellent drainage properties. Concrete made from sand with smaller grains will not be so porous and can allow water to collect on top of it. This again makes concrete sand very useful as a base layer beneath paving slabs, as any rainwater will not pool on the foundation but will instead drain through to the earth beneath.

Silt content

The third and final difference is that concrete sand is very low in clay and silt content. This has several advantages. Firstly, it improves the drainage properties of the sand and the resultant concrete. Secondly, it is kinder to paving slabs. Silt can have a high salt content, and this can be harmful to slabs as it can erode them. Finally, an absence of silt in the sand gives a better quality of concrete, whatever the eventual use. These three advantages make low-silt sand most suitable for use under a paved area, and concrete sand is the ideal type for the job.

To summarise, concrete sand is larger and more jagged than other sands and contains less silt. This is exactly the type of sand needed to mix in concrete to make a foundation layer for a pathway.

If you want to know more, talk to a dealer who offers concrete sand for sale.