Types of Paver Bases

When you’re trying to create a driveway, patio, or walkway with pavers, you need the right paver base. We help you understand the different types of paver bases and materials used during a paver installation project.

Types of Paver Bases

Sub Base

This is the deepest layer of your project, called the sub-base. Sub-bases can consist of dirt, clay, or sand.


The next layer that goes over the sub base is called a baselayer, which provides a support cushion between the pavers and the sub base. It is primarily made up of gravel 3/4″, which is great and helps in situations with hydrostatic pressure.

Bedding Layer

The bedding layer is the top layer providing the most support just before the pavers get laid over it. This layer is usually comprised of sand, 1/4″-10 crushed gravel types, or a synthetic material such as Gatorbase panels (special order only) or Alliance Gator Aqua Rock.

Types of Paver Base Materials

The type of paver base you choose will help to determine whether your pavers remain level and smooth or become uneven over time. You want to choose the right paver base material. Consider the water drainage, the durability of the base, and how thick you need the subgrade material.

Sand is one of the most common materials used as a paver base. It’s very accessible and can be spread out to fit most projects. However, you don’t want to use sand by itself. It can shift over time and can create an uneven foundation below your pavers.

Often, sand is used with crushed stone to gain more durability. Concrete sand is a popular option since it’s coarse and won’t trap excess moisture under the paver surface.

Crushed stone by itself is a common paver base. It’s a solid option and provides good drainage. You want to make sure you get the right aggregate for your paver base with crushed stone.

Another good choice for your paver base is recycled concrete aggregate or RCA. This is a crushed stone alternative and offers some environmental benefits. It will function much like crushed stone, but it can be a bit more unpredictable. It’s a less reliable type of paver base, but it can work.

Stone dust is one more common material used as a paver base. With stone dust, you get finely ground stones also called screenings. It offers the ability to distribute and bear loads. This material can help keep pavers from shifting over time.

Choosing the right type of paver base will make a difference for your paver patio, driveway, or walkway. Make sure you consider the materials and choose the right base for you.