When planning a hardscape or masonry project, there are a few steps involved before you can get started. You obviously first need an idea of what you plan on accomplishing and expand on the idea with a plan or design that includes exact measurements. The next step will be to figure out the materials and quantities needed to complete the job. This article will cover some basic information and tips when estimating materials for your hardscape or masonry project.
The most important aspect in estimating accurate product quantities is to have exact measurements of your project area and/or hardscape and masonry elements. Trying to calculate product quantities without knowing the true measurements can leave you with either not enough, or way too much product on hand. So instead of, “It’s about 20 feet long and 20 feet wide.”, you’ll want to know, “Its exactly 18 feet long and 23 feet wide”.
When estimating needed quantities for almost all of the hardscape and masonry products available at RCP Block & Brick, you will need one of two simple measurements: Area (Square Feet or sqft), and Length (Lineal Feet or lnft). While products are sold in varying quantities (per-piece, pallet, cubic yard, sack, etc.); it is the sqft or lnft measurement of the project area that will be the main basis for determining how much product you will need.
Square foot measurements are the most used measurement for hardscape and masonry products. Square feet is a measurement of the area of the project. Some common examples include: Landscape Wall Blocks, where you need the facial sqft of the wall (length of wall x height of wall); Concrete Pavers, Landscaping Rocks, Artificial Turf where you need the sqft of the area to be covered (width of area x length of area); or Stone Veneer field units where you need the sqft of the wall face to be covered (height of wall x width of wall).
Lineal foot measurements is a simple measurement of the length of the project area. Some common examples include: Wall Cap, where you need to know the length of the wall; Stone Veneer Corners, where you need to know the height of the corner; or Paver Borders, where you will need to know the length of the sides of your planned paver installation.
When estimating your hardscape and masonry product needs, it is sometimes advised to slightly round up. Whether rounding up to the nearest full foot when measuring or rounding up to the next available packaged quantity of a product. It is better to have slightly too much product than not enough.
Rounding up is especially important when it comes to planned projects where cutting may be required. Retaining walls, concrete pavers, artificial turf, flagstone, etc. While your measurements may be precise, once you start cutting pieces to fit, you will most likely be left with unusable scrap. This may leave you with not enough product to finish your project. Determining how much extra product to purchase will vary depending on your project design, what products you are using, and your efficiency in planning and executing cuts. If you have any questions, please contact any of RCP Block & Brick’s retail sales locations and we can help you out.
RCP Block & Brick has developed some easy-to-use Hardscape and Masonry Calculators for a variety of our most popular products. Calculations are great for simple projects, and will include both the products you are estimating as well provide you with needed quantities of suggested installation materials.
The RCP Block & Brick hardscape and masonry calculators are available on the web, as well as available for both Android and Apple mobile devices. You can learn more about these calculators in the article, “RCP Block & Brick Hardscape and Masonry Calculators.”
If you are unsure about how to calculate your needed product quantities, or if your particular project includes products, elements, or special situations that are beyond the simplicity of the RCP Calculators; we are here to help. You can call, message, or visit any of our retail sales locations and our friendly and knowledgeable sales staff will work with you to help figure out exactly how much product you will need to get your job done right.