What Is the Best Way to Point Slabs? | a Practical Guide

When it comes to enhancing the appearance and prolonging the lifespan of slabs, pointing is an essential process. However, determining the best method to point slabs might seem like a daunting task. Different techniques, materials, and tools come into play, each with it’s own advantages and disadvantages. Whether you’re a DIY enthusiast or a professional contractor, this comprehensive guide will provide you with valuable insights on how to achieve the best results when pointing slabs, ensuring durability, visual appeal, and overall satisfaction.

What Is Best for Pointing Patio Slabs?

The traditional sand and cement method involves mixing equal parts of sand and cement together with water to create a thick paste. This paste is then used to fill in the gaps between the patio slabs, ensuring a strong and durable finish. The key is to ensure that the mixture is well mixed and has a consistency that allows it to be easily spread but not too runny.

Once the pointing mix is prepared, it’s important to work quickly to fill in the gaps before the mixture starts to harden. A pointing trowel is typically used to press the mix into the gaps and ensure a neat and even finish. Excess mix can be trimmed away using a brick jointer or a pointing trowel, and any uneven areas can be smoothed out with a small brush or sponge.

One of the major benefits of using sand and cement for pointing is it’s durability. This method has been tried and tested over the years and has proven to withstand the test of time. It’s resistant to weathering and can withstand heavy foot traffic without cracking or crumbling.

However, it’s worth noting that this method does require a certain level of skill and precision. Getting the mixture consistency right can be tricky, and applying the mix evenly can be time-consuming. Additionally, the curing time for the mix can be quite long, meaning that the patio will be out of commission for a few days while the mix sets.

Overall, the sand and cement method remains a reliable choice for pointing patio slabs. It offers a strong and durable finish that can withstand the elements and heavy use. However, it does require careful preparation and application, and patience during the curing process.

When it comes to repointing patio slabs, there are several tools and materials that can aid in the process. Some essential tools include a plugging chisel, a lump hammer, a bolster, a brush, a pointing trowel, and a hosepipe. Additionally, using patio pointing mix can help achieve durable and long-lasting results. By utilizing these tools and materials, you can effectively repoint your patio and maintain it’s structural integrity.

What Do You Use to Repoint Patio Slabs?

When it comes to repointing patio slabs, there are several tools and materials that are commonly used. One of the most important tools is a plugging chisel, which is specifically designed to remove old mortar from between the slabs. This chisel can be paired with a lump hammer, which provides the necessary force to break up stubborn mortar.

A bolster is another tool commonly used in patio repointing. It’s essentially a wider chisel that can be used to remove larger sections of mortar. This can be particularly useful when dealing with more deteriorated or heavily compacted mortar.

Once the old mortar has been removed, a brush is essential for cleaning the joints and ensuring they’re clear of debris. This step is important to ensure proper adhesion for the new mortar. A pointing trowel is then used to apply the new mortar into the joints. This specialized tool allows for precise placement and ensures a clean and neat finish.

To aid in the application of the mortar, a hosepipe can be used to wet the slabs before the pointing process begins. This not only helps the mortar to adhere better but also prevents it from drying out too quickly, which can lead to shrinkage and cracking.

Lastly, choosing the right patio pointing mix is crucial for a successful repointing job. There are various types of pointing mix available, including traditional cement-based mixes and newer resin-based products. The best choice will depend on the specific needs of the patio, including factors such as climate and anticipated traffic levels.

The use of a plugging chisel, lump hammer, bolster, brush, pointing trowel, hosepipe, and the right patio pointing mix ensures a thorough and professional job. By following these steps and investing in quality tools, you can achieve a visually appealing and durable result for your patio.


A practical approach involves carefully assessing the condition of the slabs, selecting suitable pointing techniques such as traditional or modern methods, utilizing compatible mortar mixtures, and applying appropriate tools and techniques. Additionally, incorporating efficient curing and maintenance practices enhances the longevity and durability of the pointed slabs.

Scroll to Top