Made from a mixture of accurately graded variety of sands and binding polymers, paver sands are high tech materials that usually find application in the filling of joints between paver stones or slabs. Owing to growing disposable incomes, and the increased trend for exterior beautification of residential and commercial spaces, the material is extensively replacing conventional cement and mortar, and the demand in the paver sand market is expected to stay strong and steady for the foreseeable future.
In addition, the growing popularity of DIY processes is also encouraging the use of paver sand for areas such as the patio, or outdoor footpaths, as quick paving solutions, which are expected to be favorable for the growth of manufacturers in the field.
Increased Awareness Building Activities Provide Additional Growth Opportunities
Paver sand is a relatively expensive material in comparison to conventional sand or mortar. In addition, a major percentage of construction workers are not aware of the material and its properties. Therefore, as paver sand requires specific technical knowhow for correct application, the use of the material is restricted, reducing demand and revenue for manufacturers.
As a result of this, major paver sand manufacturers are developing awareness and training programs. These activities not-only train construction professionals about the benefits that paver sand has over conventional alternatives, they also provide detailed training on the correct way to use the material in different construction applications.
For example, Techniseal has developed technical training programs aimed towards hardscape professionals that enabled a higher number of professionals to gain skills that allow them to use paver sand as an additional source of income.
Technological Innovations Drive Improvement in Materials
With the growing intensity of competition in the paver sand market, manufacturers have focused their efforts towards research and development of their products, and improvements in physical properties. Most paver sand variants need extremely accurate application procedures to gain the optimal results. Over or under-watering, working in unsuitable weather, mixing regular sand with polymeric sand, and the use of wrong tools, are all factors that reduce the durability of the paving project. Innovations in the industry, aim to create products that provide optimal results even with minor mistakes.
For example, Black Diamond Coatings Inc. have revealed their new range of polymeric sand that make use of a patented solid flex technology, that comprises proprietary polymers, that not only allows the polymers to become solid in very little time, it also allows the material to be flexible, boosting durability of the paving material even with minor errors in the application process, while increasing lifespan, beyond other alternatives, with the right usage.
Portland cement is traditionally a key element in polymeric sand, as it helps in booting the strength and hardness of the finished pavement. On the other hand, the inclusion of Portland results in increased haze on the surface of the material, reducing air quality and lowering working conditions. As a result, some manufacturers such as SEK-Surebond are also developing Portland free paving sands.
Permeable Polymeric Sand Gains Popularity
Recent years have witnessed a significant increase in the use of permeable polymeric sands. The material is being extensively used for new and retrofit construction projects. The process recovers specialized joint stabilizing protector materials, which allow the gelling and solidification of permeable aggregates. The permeable characteristics of polymeric sand give the material increased resistance to weathering and periodic maintenance procedures.
In addition, these materials also allow pavers to achieve glossy, natural or wet appearance for the paved surfaces, which is a key factor that is propelling the growing demand for permeable variants in the polymeric sand market.
Manufacturers are increasingly providing training seminars, social media publications, proper marketing, and social media publications that offer essential information about their products and their variants. Demonstrational events, instructional videos, are also being provided to eliminate misconceptions about the application of polymeric sand, and increasing the workforce capable of using this material in their projects.
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