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Bergen County NJ- Tips From 2013 Top 50 Builder –How to hire experienced pool patio design & installation companies & avoid construction failures in your backyard.

Bergen County NJ- Tips From 2013 Top 50 Builder –How to hire experienced pool patio design & installation companies & avoid construction failures in your backyard.

The use of natural stone on your landscape design has the ability to transform your property into both a functional area, as well as a space that is very aesthetically pleasing.  You would perceive it to be a simple process to layout and assemble natural stone pool patio properly, but you could not be more mistaken.  If  the installation is done incorrectly, stonework can erode quite quickly, and can cost exorbitant amounts of money construction repairs.  Many companies simply don’t have the experience and take advantage of the fact that people don’t really research their prior work to make sure that it is up to par, and unfortunately, many families are left with massive repair bills and no one to contact from the company that they had used.

When scrutinizing the company online or in a magazine, make sure that they have more than just one or two pictures of the project you want to have completed.  More importantly, be sure to ask to see some of their previously completed projects.  Viewing the stonework that the company has done previously will give you a lucid indication as to whether or not you should be using them on your own pool renovation or outdoor patio design.

Things to Look Out For:

1. Check to see if the contractor has implemented any expansion joints into the project.  If they have not, this is a strong indication that they have possibly missed other crucial steps during the construction process as well, which raises bright red flags regarding the quality and durability of the overall project.  Additionally, the joints should not be wider than ½ inch, under any circumstance. Joints that are larger than this are almost guaranteed to become damaged due to their separating from the stone very quickly.

2.  Walk on the stone, and see how it feels to you.  Sawn pattern stones with finished surfaces should have an incredibly smooth exterior, similar to a layer of glass.  Even sporadic stone patterns should maintain some sort of consistency.  Uneven stones with jagged edges or missing pieces is an indubitable inkling of faulty construction.

3. Check to see if there are any large puddles when it rains, and even if it has not rained for some time, check the ground for dirt or grayish residue that will indicate the puddle’s existence. Smaller puddles that are limited to the size of one stone are normal and should be no cause for alarm.  If the puddles extend to more than one stone, it will likely deteriorate the masonry joints and start dividing the natural stone from the masonry itself.

4. You should further check for signs of settling, in areas where the patio connects with nearby structures. For example, if the bottom step is larger than the other steps present, or if the patio is lower than the pool coping, this is a sure indication of settling.

5. Bring a small stone along with you to the job site, and apply the tap test. Tenderly roll the stone on the patio and listen cautiously for what sounds like hollow areas. A hollow area most likely means that the stone has detached itself from the setting bed, and if more than a few stones exude the hollow noise, it is a sign of inexperienced workmanship.

Overall, our landscape architects highly recommend that you be both incredulous and critical when researching the company that you would like to do your landscape renovations incorporating natural stone.  You are the one who is investing money into this property-changing endeavor, and it is completely worth your while to only hire a company that has proven its experience, professionalism, and willingness to communicate with you throughout the construction process.