5 Essential Gravel Patio Maintenance Tips
A tidy and inviting gravel patio can improve the look of your yard, boost your property value, and provide a great space for hosting guests. Keeping your gravel patio neat and clean requires a bit of regular maintenance. Here are five tips to keep your patio looking great.
- Weeding Your Patio
Removing weeds is the most essential, and oftentimes the most tedious form of patio maintenance. Use boiling hot water to make this job a little easier. Pour a kettle of boiling water over the weeds in your patio. Give them some time to dry, and then remove them with a hoe or by hand. Repeat this process about once a month, or anytime you see weeds cropping up.
- Raking Your Patio
Gravel has a tendency to shift. You can keep your patio in good shape by periodically raking the gravel back into place. You can use a metal rake, or if your patio is very large, you can drag a large piece of metal or wood frame across the top. Try to make the center of the patio a bit higher than the edges. This will help ensure proper drainage.
- Removing Leaves
The easiest way to remove leaves is to use a leaf blower. If you do not have access to one of these, you can sweep the leaves away with a broom. For best results, remove leaves soon after they fall, and while they are still dry. Damp leaves stick to your gravel, and they are much more difficult to remove.
- Filling Potholes
Over time, every gravel patio will accumulate some divots and potholes. You can fill these in and prevent them from getting worse by using fine sand and large gravel with coarse edges. First, remove any loose gravel from the opening. Then fill the space in with a layer of fine sand, and top it off with large gravel. You may want to overfill the hole, just slightly, and then give it some time to settle.
- Adding Fresh Gravel Every Two Years
Every other year or so, it is a good idea to spread a new layer of gravel along the length of your patio. You can hire a professional to deliver the gravel, or use a front-loader to do it yourself. Rake the gravel smooth, leaving the center section a bit higher than the edges, to help ensure proper drainage. Adding a fresh layer of gravel about every two years keeps your patio in great shape.