How to Cut Concrete Pavers

Paving stones are a great way to beautify the exterior of your home and yard. But, paving stones are expensive by themselves, and professional installation can cost thousands, depending on the size of your project. It’s easy to see why this is a project you may rather tackle yourself.

Thankfully, it’s not hard to learn how to cut concrete pavers, and by the time you’ve finished reading this guide, you should feel confident in your ability to tackle this project.

What You’ll Need

There are a few different ways you can learn how to cut concrete pavers. Today, we’ll cover how to cut them by hand, and how to cut them using power tools. If you do it by hand, here’s what you’ll need:

You can also use a saw to cut pavers, and this method is particularly useful when you have to cut multiple stones for your project. Here’s what you’ll need:

Step I: Measuring

The first thing you’ll need to do is measure for each stone you’ll need to cut. You can do this one of two ways. You can lay all of your full stones first, then measure the distance from the end of the last full stone to the end of your project to determine the size you’ll need for your final cut stone.

Or, you can lay your whole project out ahead of time on paper to determine the dimensions for the stones you’ll need to cut.

Once you know the dimensions for the stone you’ll be cutting, use a straightedge and a carpenter’s pencil to mark where you’ll need to cut.

Step II: Cutting the Brick (the Old Fashioned Way)

If you’re only going to be cutting a few pavers, or if you don’t have access to any power tools, this method will do the trick.

Put on a pair of gloves and safety goggles to protect yourself from any brick pieces that may fly up as you’re chiseling.

First, you’ll want to use the end of your chisel to score the brick. Apply firm downward pressure to score the brick along the line(s) you’ve marked with your pencil.

Next, place your chisel along the scored line and strike the chisel with the hammer. Try and use even, moderately forceful strikes with your hammer. Move the chisel along the line you’ve scored until you’ve chiseled the entire brick.

You may need to repeat this process several times until the brick breaks, which is to be expected. In this case, slow and steady wins the race. If there’s too much force behind your hammer strikes, you run the risk of breaking the brick in a place you don’t want it to break.

After a few passes with the chisel, the brick should break perfectly along the line you’ve scored. There may be some rough or uneven edges on your cut paver after you’ve finished. If that’s the case, use your hammer and chisel to refine the edge before installing your paver.

Step II: Cutting the Brick (With a Power Saw)

If you’re going to be cutting multiple bricks, you can save time and energy by using a circular or table saw to cut the brick.

A diamond-tipped blade works best for this project. But, these blades can be prohibitively expensive. If you don’t already have one, or if you don’t want to spend the money to buy one, a masonry or carbide tipped blade will do the job just fine, for much less money.

If you’re interested in learning more about masonry blades, check out this Masonry Magazine article.

Before you get started, make sure you’re wearing proper safety gear. Not only will you need gloves and safety goggles, but you’ll also need a respirator to protect yourself from the concrete dust that will be generated as you cut. Hearing protection is also helpful.

If you’re using a handheld saw, like a circular saw or masonry saw, you’ll want to clamp your brick to a workbench before you begin cutting. Clamp the brick to the edge of the bench, so the portion of the brick you won’t be saving can fall away once it’s cut.

Turn on your saw and begin to cut the brick at the line you’ve marked. Apply very light pressure and allow the saw to do all the work. Depending on the thickness of the paver you’re cutting, you may need to make several passes with the saw, or you may need to flip the stone midway through so that you can cut from the other side to complete the cut.

Final Word

Learning how to cut concrete pavers is a fairly straightforward job that you can complete with just a few tools and the information you’ve just learned in this article. Remember to work safely and carefully whenever you’re working with power tools, and always wear proper safety gear.

Gus Donaldson
About Gus Donaldson

I built houses for over 30 years and recently retired. I've made lots of mistakes and hopefully teach you not to make the same ones. I still love to build and have a garage workshop that I use for hobby projects like the walnut bookshelf I made for my wife. I like to write and let people know that working with your hands and tools does not need to be intimidating.

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