A Guide to Trouble Free Brick Paving

Why is the BPI necessary?

The Brick Paving Institute (BPI Est. 1983) is a self governing body acting as a consumer watchdog against irregularities in the brick paving industry.

The BPI was established at a time when the industry was plagued by fly-by-night operators who offered “bargain” paving by cutting corners, and who were not around when the consumer ran into quality problems.

It was therefore decided to form an association which would protect the consumer by ensuring the standard of materials and workmanship.  The BPI also arrange seminars for members to ensure that standards stay consistent.

So, for your own security and peace of mind, do check that your paver is a member of the BPI.

We hope that the following tips will act as your guideline to trouble free brick paving.

Before you start …

Before deciding on your paver, ensure that you get satisfaction regarding the following questions.

  • Is the company a member of the BPI?
  • For how long is the job guaranteed? (One year is normal)
  • How many years has the paver been in business?
  • Could he supply a list of work done to date?

A few phone calls to substantiate claims could be well worth your effort.

  • Who physically does the work… is the labour properly supervised?
  • Does the price list quote precisely what work will be done?

In order to compare prices accurately you need to establish precisely what has been quoted on.  The quote should show a detailed list of work that will be done, i.e. specify area and m² to be paved.  (NOT JUST : “paving at no. 2 Ocean Drive”), list steps, corners, edges, pathways, specify brick, (1st grade, plaster, clay, etc.) removal of rubble.  A detailed drawing should accompany the quote showing clearly the full extent of the work quoted for and type of material to be used.

  • How long will the job take?
  • What payment will be expected, and when?

Don’t pay before the job commences.  Remember you do not have to finance the paver’s business.

What could go wrong?

Poor quality of bricks
Cheaper, substandard bricks could deteriorate with time – resulting in crumbling, chipping, cracking & colour fading.

Poor quality of sand
Inferior sand could affect the paving.  Clean river sand or dune sand to be used.  (NEVER unwashed beach sand)

Weak mortar mixes
Jointing, grouting and bedding mortar need to be of correct strengths.  Cheap mixes using insufficient cement, will result in brick failure.  BPI members have the correct mortar specifications.

This is a common problem with incorrectly prepared base construction.  Your contractor should have the correct compaction equipment and knowledge of correct base treatment.

General finish

Inexperience or poor workmanship causes cement staining, deviation in pattern lines, waviness of surface levels.  Members of the BPI have to abide by minimum standards of workmanship laid down in the BPI specifications, ensuring a good standard of work.

5 powerful reasons for using a BPI member

  1. Consumer protection : If anything goes wrong when using a BPI member, the BPI will mediate free of charge on your  (Not including court cases where a charge will be made.)
  2. Value for money : An excellent job done at a fair price.
  3. An excellent standard of workmanship.
  4. Design advice to enhance the value of your property.
  5. The correct materials for the job … no hidden cost cutting.

Code of ethics … your guarantee

The BPI works to supply quality in paving.  Members are bound by a set of professional rules, the BPI’s code of ethics.  Should you have any problems please contact us.  We will contact the member and if you still do not get satisfaction we will inspect the job, (free of charge), and mediate on your behalf.