Stone dust is a material you need to do any hardscaping project to complete. Many people may not know what it is exactly, how to use it, where to get it, and other information about it.
Since this product has several different names, it causes a lot of confusion. Indeed, the name does not suggest its appearance and consistency. It differs from a stone nor dust.
Well, that is the main reason why this article exists. Thus, it would be an ultimate guide for you to get more detailed knowledge about this material.
- What is Stone Dust?
- The Properties in Stone Dust
- Types of Stone Dust
- How to Use Stone Dust
- Stone Dust for Agriculture
- Where to Get Stone Dust
- How to Measure the Amount You Need
- Calculating Stone Dust Amount
- Between Patio Pavers: Stone Dust vs. Sand
- Quarry Process vs. Crushed Stone vs. Stone Dust
- Stone Dust for Driveways
What is Stone Dust?
Let us begin with a pretty basic question. Probably, many of you do not really know what exactly stone dust is.
According to a certain contractor, this material is a crushed stone that is also known as a crusher run.
Besides, people sometimes also called it quarry or rock dust. You may find the product with the name of its brand too.
Contractors collect the material using some kind of screen that would filter the larger pieces above it. The screen lets the rock dust fall through. That is the consistency they need for the construction.
This process becomes the reason why sometimes people also call the material the quarry screenings. The quality of this product is graded by a number based on the size of the stone.
In appearance, this type of material is the smallest form of crushed stone. The grading number is #10.
The Properties in Stone Dust
As we know, there will be some properties inside any materials. That is the reason it could suit different kinds of projects.
There are many contents inside the material. They are very useful for many purposes such as hardscaping jobs.
If you know what is inside the stone dust, deciding the right jobs for the material would be easier. Here are some of them.
Weed Prevention. This property is one of the greatest features that stone dust has to offer. It can be a paving filler.
So, it prevents weed growth in the paving areas. These properties will keep the paved area looking tidy and neat for a long time.
Low Cost. You can compare this material with other options like sand. The product has a property that offers a cheaper price. It is kind of an advantage to save money for the hardscaping project.
Flat and Smooth. The stone offers an even and level surface since it is able to lay very flat and smooth. There will be no uneven surfaces anymore in your outdoor space.
Non-Porous. The material is a non-porous substance that can give the product an advantage when installed in between paving stones.
The water from heavy rain will not be seeping below the stones anymore. It offers low risks of shifting and damaging.
Variety. Numerous kinds of stone dust materials are available. You can choose it based on the colors, types, and grades.
Types of Stone Dust
As said before, stone dust comes in various types. It is because this product is a crushing stone byproduct. So, the variety will be based on the kinds of stones that are crushed.
Each of the different types comes with distinguished properties too. They also may come in different colors. Granite and limestone belong to the types of stone dust.
Its types can be in the category according to how coarse and fine they are. Well, several kinds would be the better picks because of their texture.
If you refer to the Home Guides website, the crusher run is the best one for a paving project. It is processed gravel which is even better than regular stone dust.
This one has a coarse consistency. It also offers better drainage. The compact process will make a form a stable base that would avoid the shifting risk.
How to Use Stone Dust
In the past, people consider stone dust as a waste material because it is just the byproduct of crushing other stones. Then, it becomes useful for many purposes.
Furthermore, the most common purpose of stone dust is to be the base layer to lay the stone pavers.
The contractors who do the project like flagging the driveway, laying a patio, or creating a path for the garden, use this product as one of the main materials.
It is because the material is able to lay flat and smooth to support the weight of the paving stones.
This byproduct is also used as the filler material to be the contents in the gap between the pavers. It would make an even surface.
Stone Dust for Agriculture
The purpose of using stone dust is for an agricultural project. Besides, this material changes the pH level.
According to the Eco Farming Daily website, farmers use this byproduct to combine with the soil in order to increase fertility.
Gardeners need this material to solve the demineralization problem in your land. You may find this issue in the areas that have been farmed intensively or the ones with tropical soil.
It becomes the material that reverses the process and it restores the soil’s life. This is a great thing for the ecosystem of the soil and makes it able to support the life of the plant too.
Where to Get Stone Dust
As a beginner, you are probably wondering where stone dust available for purchase. Well, there are many places to buy the product which comes in various quantities.
One of the places to purchase the material is the quarry or stone yard.
Living nearby the yard will be in luck. Since this location is the best place to get stone dust. They would sell the material at the cheapest price because it is the source.
However, if there is no such place nearby your house, you may need to get it elsewhere. For the record, the excavation companies also have stone dust for sale.
You can also find it in the DIY stores or other home-improvement stores, like Home Depot or Lowes.
If you do not want to waste time looking for the stores, you can also order the stone dust online. There are many companies that sell it through their website and deliver it to your location right away.
How to Measure the Amount You Need
Before purchasing, you have to get the exact amount you will need for the project. The calculation needs to be precise so there will be nothing left after you finish when you buy too much.
However, if you buy too little, it would be a waste of time to order more to finish the project. The impact can be bad.
Do not worry, you will be able to get the precise amount you need for the job.
Calculating Stone Dust Amount
Try using an online calculator from the Inch Calculator website. Then, find a useful calculator to work out how much product for the project.
Also, you might find the right estimation by yourself from the website. There is even a feature to calculate the sand dust for the cubic yards. Here’s how:
- Measure the width and length of the space you have planned to cover in inches.
- Multiply the length and width to find the area in square inches.
- Measure the depth of the space to calculate the volume in cubic inches. Then, multiply it by the space.
- Usually, you will need an inch of stone dust and gravel for four inches. So, when calculating how much stone dust you need, the depth is usually one inch.
- Divide the volume of the cubic in inches by 46,656. That exact number will provide what cubic yards you will need for the base.
If you want to find the stone dust amount in cubic meters, here are the steps to find it.
- At first, measure the width and length just like the previous ones. However, this time you should do it in centimeters.
- Then, find the space in square centimeters. After that, you can multiply the width and length.
- Multiply the space by the depth of it in centimeters. This way will find the cubic volume in centimeters too.
- Lastly, work out the volume in cubic meters. It can be done by dividing the volume cubic in cm by one thousand.
Those calculations are not only for stone dust amount. Besides, work out how much you need for sand or gravel with them.
Moreover, define how much you should lay in the area. Well, the amount will be based on the project itself. However, stone dust as the base layer will be in one inch for the depth.
Between Patio Pavers: Stone Dust vs. Sand
In the market, stone dust is not the only option to be the material to fill in between patio pavers. Contractors also use sand for the job.
The choice is usually according to the preference of the contractors. They would pick based on their calculation with the budget, condition, and design.
However, each material has advantages and drawbacks.
This part of the article would help you decide which product is the best for your project. Here are the comparisons.
This is an important aspect that you need to consider in choosing the material for the filling between patio pavers.
Sand has good drainage because of its porous consistency. So, the chance of getting a shift in heavy rain would be minimal.
On the other hand, the very fine quality of stone dust will not give the water a way down. It will hold the water.
That would damage the paving stone. That is the reason a lot of landscapers choose the sand over stone dust.
Sand seems to be the winner again at this part because it compacts well and it does not settle. This is the important feature to lay the pavers.
While stone dust is very fine making it does not compact as well as the sand.
So, the problem with settling will be something you will deal with. It can cause the stones to shift.
Having the concrete mixed with sand would make a layer that is easy to sweep away. While stone dust would be a little bit messy because the particles have a high chance to break away when it gets dried.
The texture of the sand is fine so your feet will hurt when you step on it without wearing any shoes or sandals.
While stone dust will give you a smooth finish to the project. However, the one that has coarser consistency would be rough and hurt your feet.
Stone dust is able to create a non-porous surface to give protection to the first layer of the project. Meanwhile, the sand will not be giving you such protection.
If you aim to make a long-lasting base layer, you should choose stone dust.
The aspect of aesthetic becomes important to make the front yard stand out the most. If you apply sand between the pavers, it will only give you one finishing color.
If you want it to be more attractive, add more color to it. Stone dust is able to offer you various hues. However, it depends on the type used before crushing.
Well, that is a guarantee for you to have more colors to choose from.
One of the most important factors you have to acknowledge when choosing the right material for your project.
According to contractors, stone dust is the more affordable option because sand is quite expensive.
For the purposes or projects, each product has its own benefits. So, consider the pros and cons based on the project you are doing.
Quarry Process vs. Crushed Stone vs. Stone Dust
In this part of the article, we will focus on the difference between the stone dust and the others, in this case, the quarry process and crushed stone.
These three materials are the common option of stone for many construction projects. By knowing the available options, it would be very helpful for you to determine what suits the needs.
This product is also known as the QP, crusher run, road stone, or the dense grade aggregate (DGA). The process is a combination of stone dust and small crushed stones.
The common main materials used to make this byproduct are limestone, trap rock, and granite-gneiss.
Besides, the QP might be a combination of those materials. It is made to bind together and form a powerful, solid surface in the process of compacting.
Wherever you need durability and strength in your project, the quarry process should be the main material.
Many driveways use this product for the road surface and its base. Besides, it also uses in walkways, surface, bike paths, and clean fill.
In the making of walkways and patios, quarry process or crusher run is used to be the part of the sub base to give them stability and power.
This is one of the popular materials among others who look for a more versatile construction one. As the name implies, it simply a stone that’s crushed into smaller sizes.
Then, it also gets screened to get a similar shape and size.
Usually, crushed stone is made of trap rock, limestone, and granite-gneiss, just like the quarry process. In the market, you can find it in various sizes that are used for different projects such as:
- An aggregate in cement or asphalt to make road construction. It would need the ¾ inch crushed stone.
- Gravel driveways, ballast for railroads, and septic fill need the 1 ½ inch one. It would give better drainage to the project.
- A prevention of erosion in drainage ditches and roadsides will need the 2 ½ inches crushed stone. It is a great product to be material for a long-term project of construction.
Stone Dust for Driveways
Stone dust is mostly used for pavers projects like patios, pathways, and driveways. As the base material, many people would choose sand over it.
This product is perfect only for the filling between the paving stones.
Stone dust has great durability and load-bearing capabilities. You can use it also as the packing material like backfilling trenches, concrete slab base, garden edging base, and the driveway too.
Stone dust has the ability to avoid weed growth. Therefore, it becomes a great product for the driveway.
You will not see any growth of vegetation in between your paving stones. The area would always be tidy and neat for a longer time.
If stone dust is not the best product for the driveway base, so what is it? You will need to choose the good crushed gravel for a long-lasting project.
The base is like the foundation to increase its durability. It is very important to pick the right product to make a strong base.
According to contractors or landscapers, the best material is then crushed, granular based gravel. As a result, you will have a really strong base.
Stone dust is definitely not the best product for all purposes. It comes with specialty and features that not every material has. So, choose wisely according to your needs.