When you’re looking to build your own patio, an absolutely necessary piece of equipment is always going to be a plate compactor. These are handy devices for compacting dirt and soil into a very firm and even surface that’s suitable for building. They are necessary if you want to establish a patio or small driveway on any surface on your property. A vibrating plate compactor is something you’ll need to use if you want the job done correctly, and in a way that you can guarantee will last a lifetime. Otherwise you run the risk of your patio slowly degrading over time, to a point where you’ll have to tear apart the structure to start again.
But before you should consider using a plate compactor, you’ll want to prepare the area. This means measuring out the entire zone that you want your small driveway or patio to encompass. You’ll want to accurately chart out the area, and it can be helpful to use twine attached to small stakes to map out the zone visually. Then you’ll need to remove all of the sod from the ground, as you don’t want grass and weeds growing underneath your patio or driveway. This is an important step, and you won’t be ready to use a plate compactor until you’ve completed this task.
After that, you’ll have raw dirt and soil exposed, and then you’re ready to use a plate compactor. These devices work by using a large metal plate, and then repeatedly banging it into the ground until the area is perfectly hard and flat. You’ll want to use the plate compactor over the entire surface area that you’ve marked out, until the ground is as hard and flat as you can get it. This way you can ensure you have the proper foundation for your structure to succeed. Otherwise there are all sorts of pitfalls that can befall your new patio or driveway, and they can be very costly to correct.
An improper foundation means that the structure will slowly sink, or be set up at an incorrect angle. This can lead to structural damage over time, and slowly the concrete or asphalt that you use for the base will begin to crack apart. Once this type of structural damage has started, it’s almost impossible to repair without tearing down what you have and starting over. That can be a huge hassle, but what’s more it can be very costly. So make sure you always use a plate compactor before any job, so you can guarantee you get it right the first time.
When you’re looking to acquire a plate compactor to use at your home, you have the choice of either renting one or purchasing one yourself. Buying one can be very expensive, as they start at $1,000 for a small one, and are well over $10,000 for deluxe versions. This means you’ll probably want to rent a plate compactor, and you can usually do that from a local hardware store. Even if the store doesn’t have any available, they can usually point you in the direction of a rental service in your area.