We finally finished the brick portion of our sunken patio project. This DIY brick patio project took way longer than I ever imagined but I couldn’t be happier with how it turned out!!!
DIY Brick Patio
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After taking down the deck at the start of this project we were SUPER excited to find the original brick patio still here that there was no question that we wanted to bring the brick back.
Just look at that gorgeous brick!!!
I am still completely perplexed as to why someone would cover a brick patio to begin with but it became clear as we were pulling up the old bricks that they were never laid properly to begin with.
There was no layer of rock or crushed stone under the bricks only a layer of sand which is why the patio was so uneven and weed filled when we moved in.
After finishing the wood retaining wall, we started digging and leveling out the dirt inside of the walls. We had to take out many, many wheel barrel loads of dirt.
We had a truck load of grit (or crushed stone), dumped in our driveway.
With the kids help we brought back wheel barrel after wheel barrel after wheel barrel of grit back to our patio until we had a few inches of crushed stone.
This crushed stone will make our patio base strong.
Jason strung a few level lines of string as a guide to make sure we were keeping everything level.
Jason tamped the crushed stone so it was level.
Once the crushed stone was in and level we brought in many wheel barrel loads of sand until we had 1-2 inches of sand.
Once the sand was level we were able to start bringing the brick back.
It was my job to clean off any dirt on each of the bricks.
I found that a wire brush did the best job to get the dirt off.
Jason started laying the bricks down the middle of the patio and then across the middle until we had 4 separate squares. We decide to lay the bricks in a basket weave pattern.
He leveled each brick using a rubber mallet making sure to keep the bricks in line with the level string line he had added before.
He added the bricks one square section at a time. This task took FOREVER!!! Not all the bricks were the same size as we had once thought making this process a little more difficult than we once believed. It took a couple long days until most of the brick was laid. I was excited to find this vintage stamped oil brick among the pile and made sure to include it with the patio.
Jason used our tile saw to cut the bricks along the edges of the patio. Using the tile saw to cut the bricks was a messy job. Jason was covered from head to toe in wet red brick dust.
Once every brick was laid it was my job to sweep sand in the cracks.
We FINALLY finished the patio late Sunday night. I didn’t even wait two minutes before I started dragging our patio furniture back in :).
We were all so excited that Jason and I agreed to let the kids go for a quick swim in our hot tub as well as enjoy some s’mores.
They worked sooo hard to help us and we wanted to reward their efforts despite the fact that it was a school night.
Our 13 year old found this awesome fire pit in the trash and brought it home for us knowing that it was something we would appreciate. I couldn’t be prouder of him for his trash picking skills :).
We still have a lot more left to do with this sunken patio project…
Our Plan for this Sunken Patio
Demo Deck Save Brick from Previous Patio Dig an 8 foot by 8 foot space for our Hot Tub Build a retaining wall around the sunken patio Move the Hot Tub Level the Ground inside the Patio Use Reclaimed Brick and Create a Brick Patio
Use Reclaimed Flagstone for walkway in front of Sliding Doors
Landscape around Sunken Patio
Bring the Outdoor Furniture Back and Decorate
The area in front of the sliding doors will have a new flagstone patio and we still need to landscape around the patio but we are so excited to be enjoying this part of our yard again!