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Not all pavers are the same

Our intention on this page is to keep it as objective and factual as possible in order for it to be of use to people who need to expand their knowledge about paving.

There are a few things that distinguish one paving product from another:

CMA mark of approval

The CMA mark is a guarantee to the consumer of quality, safety and reliability of products. It is an assurance of conformity to SANS specifications and standards.

How it works?

The CMA tests a “sample” batch of a manufacturer’s pavers. There are four important determining factors when testing concrete pavers against the SANS.(Refer to our article on the most recent specification.)

  • Dimensional accuracy.
  • Flexible strength
  • Abrasion resistance
  • Appearance

If a manufacturer’s product passes these initial “sample” tests it receives a mark of approval.   The consumer has some recourse when the products of a CMA approved supplier fails. Visit the CMA website to view suppliers that have been approved. Unfortunately there are individuals who make false claims regarding the ownership of a mark of approval .

Manufacturers with their own laboratories

As explained above the CMA tests a product once per three year cycle. However it is definitely beneficial to select a supplier who owns a laboratory facilitating consistent product testing and quality assurance evaluations. Without such a facility a manufacturer would not have the assurance that their quality is up to the required standard.

Thickness of paving

An important point to be aware of is that pavers are not all the same thickness and one must always compare apples with apples. In South Africa there are manufacturers of wet cast concrete paving especially, who manufacture 40mm thick products for driveways. Industry bodies like the Concrete Manufacturers Association clearly recommends that paving should be at least 50mm thick if it is to be used on driveways.

Ability to supply

Ensure that your supplier has the ability to supply on time. Many companies would require a deposit prior to manufacturing your product. Obtain very clear dates of anticipated supply and perhaps visit a manufacturer to see their facilities and the confidence they instill.

Visual appearance

It is always good to see a specific supplier’s samples. Look at colour consistency between different pavers, surface textures and consistency in size.

There is a big difference between paving bricks and building bricks.

It is simple. Paving bricks should be much, much stronger than building bricks. Compressive strengths of pavers should be around 25MPa and building bricks may only be 10MPa.

Most installers will sell by price

Most installers will say that the “top of the range” paving option is “Cast stone” which is sometimes also called simulated stone, cobblestone, or wet cast paving. Our own sister company (SmartStone) is a leader in this field.

The second “quality” tier would be clay bricks. (Corobrik is a well-respected clay brick manufacturer.) The cheapest option would be “cement bricks”, concrete or dry cast concrete paving, which is the type of paving Bosun manufacturers. In the past 10 years however, there have been incredible advances in the manufacturing of the latter.

Bosun’s products may also not be the cheapest option available, especially if you consider specialised sizes, colours and beneficiated concrete paving.


Refer to our paving material guide for more information.

Contact Us

Head Office
Cnr Cresset and Musket Roads
Midrand Industrial Park
Phone: 011 310 1176
Email: info@bosun.co.za