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Important Information & Caring for your patio

General Tips for Caring for & Cleaning Your Patio

The following tips should help you keep your paving looking at its best for longer. Please note that although sometimes unsightly, blemishes or stains are unlikely to affect the performance of the paving in any way. Always follow manufacturer’s instructions when using cleaning equipment or materials.

Important Information

Product Colour

All images shown in this brochure are for illustrative purposes only.  Every effort is made to ensure accurate colour representation, however due to photographic and printing processes and varying light conditions, colours may not exactly match current production.  We strongly recommend that colours are judged and chosen from actual materials and samples are sought from your local retailer.  It is also worth noting that the colour of new products will inevitably vary compared to those which have been installed for a period of time as weathering does take place.

Natural Stone products will naturally feature more colour variation than concrete products and several samples should be obtained.  Bowland Stone does not take responsibility for any colour inaccuracies within this brochure compared to the products featured.

Although every effort is made to ensure colour consistency, variations between production batches can occur, especially in blended shades.  We recommend that where possible products are ordered from one batch and where multiple packs of product are ordered, thoroughly mix the products by drawing from different packs when laying. 


Bowland paving is manufactured to capture the authenticity of natural slabs and as such they may vary in thickness.  All sizes & dimensions are nominal, subject to manufacturing tolerances and are for guidance only. 

It is recommended to ‘dry lay’ your design first starting from the centre, (especially Bowland Stone feature kits including circles, stars, octagons, & ovals), which will allow you to establish the correct spacing between each slab to ensure your design fits perfectly in the area allocated.


All quality products with a high cement content may suffer the temporary phenomenon of efflorescence.  It can appear as a white powder or just an apparent lightening/fading of surface colour.  It is caused by the migration of soluble salts (calcium hydroxide) through the damp paving surface which then reacts with atmospheric carbon dioxide to form calcium carbonate – a white deposit of low water solubility which is apparent as the surface dries. 

Ideally it is better to let efflorescence disappear naturally, however it can be removed chemically by using propriety acid washing agents or brick/patio cleaners in accordance with manufacturer’s instructions.  Trials should be carried out on samples or on a limited area, in order to assess the effect on the appearance.  Please note that this can alter the appearance of the concrete by changing the surface texture and may also damage the concrete surface.


Natural weathering and site conditions will also affect the appearance of paving along with seasonal manufacture or naturally occurring variations of the aggregates used in manufacturing. 

Differential weathering can cause patchy, dark discolouration on the surface of individual paving slabs, due to the paving curing at different rates.  This will generally diminish over time and will not affect the long term performance.

All products can develop algae and organic growths under certain environmental conditions and may require cleaning.  Areas adjacent to borders, plant pots and trees may discolour from transfer of plant life.  Specialist maintenance advice may need to be sought.

Bowland Stone do not recommend the use of road salt or the use of pressure washers, as both can damage the surface and appearance of the paving

Poor drainage or installing paving onto an existing concrete/paved base can lead to high levels of moisture underneath the paving.  This may result in discolouration/staining on the surface of the paving due to absorption of trapped water.

Health and Safety / Product Handling

Care should be taken when handling / installing Bowland Stone products, we always recommend suitable lifting equipment or 2 person lifting on our larger size paving slabs.


Prior to laying, cover all paving and store in a vertical position.  Bowland Stone will not take responsibility for any paving that has developed water marks or stains due to inadequate storage.


Bowland Stone products, unless otherwise stated, are primarily intended for domestic/landscape use only.  Decorative paving is not recommended for use on driveways.  For areas subject to vehicular use, block paving products are recommended (see pages 40-41).

Delivered Goods

All products must be checked upon receipt.  In the unlikely event of products reaching you in an unsatisfactory condition, please contact your retailer immediately, allowing time for the rejected product to be inspected and or replaced.  Minor scuffs or bruises may occur during delivery, movement onsite and installation are generally unavoidable, in our experience these will weather in over time.

Bowland Stone cannot accept any responsibility for uplifting and relaying costs of defective products if upon inspection, it is deemed that the defect would have been apparent prior to laying.


No charge is levied for this brochure and liability in respect of any statements, conditions, warranties and representations made on behalf of Bowland Stone is limited in accordance with the terms set out in Standard Conditions of Sale.  While every effort is made to give sound advice, Bowland Stone cannot accept any responsibility for any loss, damage or injury as a result of following it.

Bowland Stone will not take any responsibility or liability in respect of products being used for any purpose other than those for which they were intended.  Due to our continuous evolution of product design and improvement, our range and specifications are subject to change without notice.  Customers should check that all information is up to date.

Bowland Stone will not be liable for any fair wear and tear, wilful damage or negligence of the customer or abnormal conditions.


Please refer to your local retailer for all up to date pricing.  Please be aware that paving is just one element of the total cost of laying a patio and is rarely the largest outlay.

Additional Product Information

Natural Stone

Unavoidable colour and thickness variations occur within the natural stone ranges.  Our natural stone is sourced from suppliers who are registered with the ‘ethical trading initiative’.

Natural Stone may develop added marking, deposits or patches as mineral content oxidises.

Product should be mixed from a number of packs prior to installation and should always be laid on a full wet mortar bed.

All Silver Grey Natural Sandstone products vary with differing geological conditions.  Such variations can lead to small particles of ironstone within the product creating a darkening of the surface with natural weathering.  This natural weathering is more obvious with Silver Grey Sandstone compared to other natural stone products due to its paler colour.

Sandstone needs to be handled very carefully when installing to minimise staining and we would advise that Smooth Natural Sandstone be sealed prior to laying using a breathable sealer. However, if this is not possible, it should be covered up as it is installed and sealed as soon as it is laid.

A slurry primer (such as Bradbond) should be applied to the underside of all Smooth Natural Sandstone, Natural Slate, Riverwashed Limestone and Granite paving prior to laying to improve adhesion.

Blue Black Limestone is UV sensitive and over time will lighten in colour.  It is recommended to seal limestone prior to laying or as soon after laying as practically possible.  Never use acidic based products on limestone.

Porcelain paving

Manufactured from the finest raw materials, under strict controls allows for exceptional technical characteristics of full-body unglazed porcelain paving.
Anti-slip surface resistance

The use of a slurry primer to the reverse of each paver is both essential and more importantly critical to the overall performance of porcelain paving.  We recommend the use of Bradbond for this.  Applied to the underside using a stiff brush, it provides an exceptional bond between paver and the full wet bed underneath.  Mixed to manufacturers instructions and applied with care it forms an immediate bond which prevents the pavers from lifting or potentially moving in the future when correctly laid.

We recommend Bradpoint jointing compound for pointing. Do not use white cement nor materials containing black pigments. Finishes are intentionally manufactured with slightly uneven colour tones and surface decoration, these subtle variations set these products apart.

Porcelain paving can be cut on site and mostly to any size.  We recommend the use of a portable saw (table saw, petrol driven disc cutter, rechargeable angle grinder) fitted with a good quality diamond porcelain blade.  The blade should be water fed for dust suppression and to keep the blade cool.  Scoring the product first and sawing from the face downwards will help to alleviate the potential risk of edge/surface chipping.

Porcelain paving can be cleaned by applying a suitable cleaner.  We strongly recommend the finished laid area be thoroughly cleaned/washed down which helps remove general building dirt, grout residue and any grease deposits that may be present.  It is also recommended that periodic cleaning with porcelain cleaner will keep the paving looking its best.

Dependent on the type of stain / surface residue present (i.e. suction marks, grease, grout, general building site dirt) there is a wide range of off the help specialist cleaners available.  Always check the manufacturers instructions first before applying to any test area.


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