Frequently Asked Questions

Remodelling your garden is an investment that you will probably live with for many years to come, so it's important that you are armed with all the information you need to make the right choices. Our friendly and experienced sales advisors are always on hand to discuss your project, but we've also put together this handy list of frequently asked questions — covering topics such as selecting the right product, installation, cleaning and maintenance — to start you on the right path.

FAQs — Porcelain Paving

General Porcelain Paving Questions

1.What is porcelain paving, how is it manufactured, and what distinguishes vitrified porcelain paving?

Porcelain paving is made from a refined clay and mineral mixture, which includes feldspar, quartz, and kaolin. This mixture is pressed and then fired at extremely high temperatures, usually above 1200°C. The high firing temperature ensures the tiles are vitrified, resulting in a dense, hard, and impermeable material with low porosity. This process is why porcelain pavers are so durable and resistant to staining and frost damage and such a good choice for a garden patio. Find out more on the London Stone blog by reading how porcelain paving is made.

2.What are the benefits and positive aspects of choosing porcelain paving slabs?

Choosing porcelain has many advantages, including its contemporary appeal, diversity in colours and textures, low-maintenance nature, affordability, and consistent colour, size, and texture. It doesn't require sealing. Find out more by reading our blog on the top ten reasons why porcelain pavers are an excellent choice for a patio.

3.What is the durability and lifespan of porcelain paving?

Porcelain is baked at high temperatures that cause the ingredients to fuse together into an impervious glass like material. Because of this vitrifying process, porcelain that has been properly installed will last for well over 30 years. That's why London Stone are very confident to offer a 10 year guarantee on all of our Porcelain products.

4.What is the difference between porcelain slabs and porcelain tiles?

The manufacturing process for porcelain paving and porcelain tiles is the same. The difference lies in the thickness: porcelain units under 20mm thickness are classified as tiles. While some may refer to outdoor porcelain products as tiles or garden tiles, the correct term for porcelain designed for outdoor use is paving. We advise that porcelain for outdoor use should be at least 20mm thick.

5.What are the disadvantages of outdoor porcelain tiles? What should you avoid with porcelain tiles?

Whilst porcelain has many advantages over other paving materials, there are some drawbacks. The installation costs of a porcelain patio are generally higher than with other paving materials and there is also the perception that Porcelain lacks the natural appearance and weathering characteristics of other paving materials like stone and clay.

6.Where do I start with a porcelain patio?

There are lots of factors to consider when thinking about whether to choose a porcelain patio, but because the costs for the various paving materials available are relatively comparable, the advice we always give to our customers is that they choose something that they like the look of. To help our clients in making this decision, there are numerous inspiration galleries of finished garden projects on our website.

7.Does porcelain paving vary in colour?

Porcelain is a manufactured material, so its colour is intentionally created to appear a certain way. This ensures colour consistency within the same batches. Variation in colour will exist though between different batches of porcelain, so we strongly advise against mixing batches in a single project. Different sizes are also manufactured in separate batches, so we don't recommend mixing different sizes on the same patio or project.

8.Is each slab of a porcelain product exactly the same?

It would be very dull if each piece of porcelain paving looked the same. Our Italian suppliers design the surface and texture of porcelain so that it looks unique and authentic. Depending on the range and product, there can be as many as 20 unique patterns for each porcelain product before any pattern repetition occurs. When the product aims to mimic the look of natural stone, this assortment of patterns contributes to a more authentic and varied appearance once installed, whilst still maintaining a consistent overall colour and texture.

Questions About Buying and Laying Porcelain Paving

1.Where to buy porcelain pavers?

Landscaping your garden is a big investment, with paving materials often accounting for a large chunk of the budget. This is why we always encourage customers to view a wide range of paving options before finalising their choice. London Stone has 11 showrooms across the country where you can see our materials in real-life settings. Additionally, our consultants are on hand to provide specialised advice to help you make the best decision.

2.Where can I view porcelain paving near me?

If you're interested in viewing quality porcelain paving, London Stone boasts 10 showrooms throughout the United Kingdom. Our showrooms are professionally designed and expertly installed, offering not just inspiration for material selection but also insights into best practice installation methods. Plus, you'll have the chance to discuss your project with our expert sales team. Locate your nearest showroom and visit us today.

3.Is porcelain paving expensive?

Prices were high when porcelain first entered the UK market, but as its popularity has grown, more suppliers have entered the market which has led to more competitive pricing. Recognising that clients have varied budgets, London Stone offers a diverse range of materials at various price points and levels of quality to ensure there's a porcelain option to suit any budget. Browse our collections and get inspired.

4.Is porcelain paving more expensive to lay?

The installation of porcelain paving can be more expensive because of additional installation steps such as priming the back of the pavers, a process not typically needed with other types of paving materials. The hardness of porcelain also makes it more difficult to cut, so specialised bench cutting equipment needs to be bought or hired.

5.What is the estimated cost per square meter for laying a porcelain patio, including the materials and installation?

Clients often ask about the cost to lay a porcelain patio. It's a tough one to answer because landscaper rates vary, as do the rates across different areas of the country. Based on our research, the going rate for porcelain installation ranges from £200 to £300 per square meter, which usually covers labour, materials, and waste disposal. We always advise to get more than one quote for comparison. London Stone provides a directory of landscape contractors, giving you the option to access a list of reputable landscapers in your area.

6.What is the labour cost for laying a porcelain patio?

Based on our experience, most reputable landscaping contractors will not quote a project based on labour charges alone. Reputable firms typically offer a fixed quotation that covers labour, all associated materials, and waste disposal. To find a reputable landscaper in your area visit London Stone Connect.

7.As a patio material, how does porcelain generally compare to natural stone and specifically to sandstone and Indian sandstone?

Porcelain paving is manufactured from refined clays and minerals and fired at high temperatures for unrivalled durability. Porcelain is non-porous, resistant to stains, frost, and water damage, and typically requires very little maintenance. The manufacturing process allows for a consistent colour and texture, and modern porcelain even replicates the look of natural materials, such as wood and stone.

Stone paving is a natural material quarried straight from the ground which gives each piece a distinctive pattern and texture. Sawn sandstone paving for example has a naturally porous surface and usually requires sealing to prevent staining and reduce maintenance. Despite this, when correctly maintained and installed, sandstone paving will still last for decades and will weather and change with time which is one of the benefits of natural stone. In deciding between porcelain and natural stone, you should consider factors like maintenance requirements, budget, and what style of garden you hope to create. Porcelain offers a more uniform appearance and ease of care, while natural stone offers more character and variation in colour and texture.

Questions about How Porcelain Performs Outdoors

1.Does porcelain paving fade?

The colour of porcelain paving will not fade over time. During the manufacturing process, the materials, including colour pigments, are all baked together at extremely high temperatures. This high-heat process leads to vitrification, where all of the raw materials fuse together to create a strong and highly durable material. The vitrification process locks in the colour, maintaining the porcelain's intended colour for years to come.

2.Are porcelain slabs slippery?

There's a misconception that because of its association with glossy interior tiles, porcelain paving is slippery. Outdoor porcelain slabs have been specifically manufactured with surface textures that mimic tried and tested natural stone surface textures, such as sandblasting, flamed and bush hammered, that meet safety standards for outdoor use. Meeting British Standards for external paving, outdoor porcelain slabs come with a minimum slip rating of R11. This makes them comparable to natural stone paving in terms of safety, even in areas that are prone to becoming wet and slippery, guaranteeing a reliable and safe outdoor surface.

3.Can porcelain pavers be used for a driveway?

Yes, porcelain is suitable for high-traffic areas, such as driveways. The most important consideration is the sub-base—it must be accurately installed and should be at least 200mm in depth. Compacting the sub-base in layers of 50mm is also crucial to eliminate any unstable pockets that the vehicle weight could expose, leading to cracking of the paving. It's also important to pay close attention to the mortar bed, ensuring there are no voids that could compromise the paving's integrity. While porcelain is generally more stain resistant than most paving materials, choosing darker colours for your driveway can help in concealing dirt, tire marks, and oil stains.

4.Does porcelain paving scratch?

Porcelain's density makes it highly scratch resistant, so the usual concerns about dragging chairs and garden furniture across your patio that come with stone are lessened. However, if porcelain does get scratched, the mark tends to be more permanent, without the natural weathering process that gradually diminishes scratches in stone. That's why opting for full-bodied porcelain, where the colour runs through the entire body of the tile, is always recommended. With full-bodied porcelain, any scratches that do occur will be less noticeable, as the exposed colour will match the surface colour.

5.How resistant are porcelain pavers to chipping and cracking?

Porcelain is highly durable once installed, and it would take a hard impact from a heavy object to chip it. Porcelain is most vulnerable to damage during transportation and handling. That's why our suppliers take various precautions to minimise the risk of chipping, such as wrapping the slabs in cardboard and protecting the corners. Porcelain is also prone to shock damage, so it's essential to handle it carefully and avoid knocking the slabs against each other.

6.Are porcelain slabs/pavers/paving frost-proof?

The exceptionally low porosity of porcelain, which can be as minimal as 0.01% means that it absorbs virtually zero moisture. This lack of absorption removes the risk of water penetrating the slabs, which in natural stone materials can freeze, expand, and cause cracking and delamination of the paving surface. The most significant risk of frost damage to porcelain paving comes from using porous brush-in resin jointing compounds. These can allow water to get underneath the slabs, potentially causing them to lift during freeze-thaw cycles. To prevent this, it's crucial to choose non-porous jointing materials. Find out more about our recommended pointing materials for porcelain.

7.Do porcelain pavers get hot in the sun?

Like most paving materials, porcelain can absorb heat when exposed to direct sunlight for long periods of time but not anymore than other paving materials. The biggest factor with any material, porcelain, stone, or even composite decking absorbing heat is the colour. Darker colour materials will always absorb heat more quickly, so if this is something that concerns you, we would recommend choosing a light-coloured porcelain.

Practical and Technical Questions

1.How much do porcelain pavers weigh?

We supply various porcelain ranges from different manufacturers, so the weights can vary. The weight of porcelain can be an essential factor for customers working on areas where load is a concern, such as balconies and roof terraces. On average, our porcelain weighs 25kg per m2. For exact weights, we encourage customers to visit the product pages on our website and check the specifications and dimensions section.

2.Do porcelain paving slabs need to be sealed?

Paving becomes stained when moisture carrying dirt is absorbed into the pores of the materials. Unlike some natural stone materials, porcelain paving is extremely dense and absorbs very little moisture, so it generally doesn't need to be sealed. There are certain situations though when your porcelain might need some extra protection. Any example of this might be a garden that experiences a lot of leaf fall, or there might be an area close to a barbecue that is prone to food being dropped. In these instances, porcelain can be sealed to provide that extra protection and it will mean that any stains are superficial and easier to clean. Use Dry Treat Premium Porcelain & Quartz sealer to seal porcelain and if you need further information, speak to a member of our team.

3.How to edge porcelain patio?

Adding an edge to any type of paving is a good way to provide contrast and definition. There are a huge of options available for edging porcelain to enhance its appearance. Setts and planks can create a visually striking contrast and stylishly frame your porcelain paving. There's a lot more to discover on this topic, which is why we wrote a detailed blog on how to edge porcelain.

4.Can you put pots on porcelain patio?

Porcelain is a hard, durable material that doesn't scratch easily, so from this point of view, there is no reason why you can't put pots on porcelain. The problem comes from water stains. Pots that have sat on top of paved areas for a long time can leave unsightly water marks on top of the paving which can be very difficult to remove. You can use pot feet and saucers, but these will also leave marks, so our advice would be not to keep anything on porcelain and if you have garden furniture, this should be moved and the paving underneath it cleaned as regularly as possible.

5.Can Porcelain be edge profiled?

London Stone are one of the only suppliers in the UK who offer an in-house bespoke service and we have pioneered many techniques to add edge profiles to porcelain. Theoretically, all porcelain can be edge profiled but the finish is dependent on the quality of the base material. Some of the cheaper oriental porcelains are not full-bodied and the finished texture and colour is only printed on the upper surface only. Trying to add an edge profile to a material that is not full-bodied results in a contrasting appearance between the surface texture and the freshly profiled edge. The superior European full-bodied porcelain tiles carry the surface colour through the entire thickness of the tile, so they can be bullnosed, pencil rounded or chamfered to a high standard of finish. See our porcelain steps and copings for our full range of edge profiles.

Questions About our Porcelain Ranges

1.Why are there so many different collections?

The essence of our approach is offering choice. With a vast array of porcelain products available, putting them all together in one large category would be overwhelming for customers. By segmenting them into relevant groups, we streamline the selection process. Customers seeking the finest quality can directly access our Luxury range. Those in search of competitively priced options might opt for our Project range or the Budget Italian range. And for those who prefer a big paver, the 800x800 and Large Format collections are readily identifiable. This organisation into sensible categories allows customers to quickly navigate our products and find what they're looking for.

2.What's the difference between Italian and Indian Porcelain?

The main difference between our Italian and Indian porcelain collections is in the internal structure of the material: our Italian porcelain is full-bodied, meaning the surface colour is consistent throughout the entire paver. In contrast, the surface colour of our Indian porcelain is only present on the top surface of the slab. The advantage of full-bodied material is that when edges are profiled, the colour of the freshly profiled edge remains uniform, matching the paver's top surface. Additionally, any scratches or chips, which fortunately are rare because of porcelain's durability, are less noticeable as they don't reveal a different colour. The Italian suppliers have also been manufacturing porcelain for a lot longer than the Indian suppliers, so the surface textures are more lifelike and of a better quality.

3.What's the most popular range?

Our collections are always evolving as we introduce new products, so the popularity of the ranges is quite fluid. However, if we had to choose, our top pick would be the Premium range, because of its extensive variety and choice of stone-textured porcelains like Jura and Florence. Explore our ranges here.

4.Are all the ranges available with steps and copings?

Yes, as experts in hard landscaping London Stone were the first supplier in the UK to truly understand the importance that steps and coping play in many garden schemes in the UK. Subsequently, we made it our mission to stock off the shelf steps and coping stones in most of our stone paving materials. We have followed the same route with porcelain by making steps and copings available across all the porcelain ranges.

5.Is maintenance the same across the different ranges?

Porcelain is low maintenance, and a jet wash and water is usually enough to remove most marks and get the porcelain looking pristine. We would recommend taking a bit more care with the lighter porcelains like Florence White and Slab Khaki and don't leave organic matter, like dead leaves, sitting on the paving for too long. Also consider that marks can show up more on dark colours. The darker grey colours are generally more forgiving as any marks don't show up as much.

6.Why does the Budget Italian and Premium Italian porcelain cost less than the Luxury range?

Our Luxury, Premium and Budget Italian ranges are all produced by the same supplier, in the same factory using the same manufacturing techniques, so this is a good question to ask. The premium and budget-conscious collections were made possible because they are only available in a limited range of colours, have less sophisticated surface textures and because they are manufactured exclusively for London Stone, have no company-wide marketing costs associated with them.

7.What's the most popular product across all the ranges?

There are a several products that really fly, but if we had to pick one that stands out, we'd choose Florence Grey. Florence Grey is inspired by Portuguese Limestone and because we developed the product alongside our Italian supply partners, we currently enjoy worldwide exclusivity on all the products in the Florence range.

8.Can you do bespoke in the different ranges?

Our in-house bespoke production facility is manned by a team of highly skilled and experienced fabricators and masons. Whether you need custom-sized steps, paving, coping, curved cuts, or core drilling in porcelain, our knowledgeable team can handle it all. They are well-versed in porcelain's properties and performance. We've also pioneered our own techniques to create chunky 40mm downstands and 36mm thick bullnoses, both of which are firsts in the UK landscape industry. Contact us with your bespoke porcelain requirements and we'll do the rest.

Questions about Porcelain Installation

1.What are the steps for properly laying porcelain paving slabs for outdoor patios or gardens?

Porcelain slabs are laid in the same way as natural stone paving, with a few differences. When laying porcelain, it is essential to paint the underside of the slabs with slurry primer to ensure complete adhesion of slabs to the mortar, a step not always necessary with natural stone. Porcelain is also more difficult to cut, and you will need to purchase specialist diamond tipped porcelain blades for your cutting equipment. Because porcelain is fully rectified, meaning that unlike natural stone, there is no dimensional tolerance, we recommend that tile spacers are used to achieve a consistent jointing gap. We have written extensive literature on this subject, for further information, read our quick guide to laying porcelain slabs.

2.How long before I can walk on porcelain slabs?

The mortar bed needs time to cure, so after porcelain has been installed, we recommend that you should wait at least 24 hours before walking on it.

3.What is the estimated cost per square meter for laying a porcelain patio, including the materials and installation?

Clients often ask about the cost to lay a porcelain patio. It's a tough one to answer because landscaper rates vary, as do the rates across different areas of the country. Based on our research, the going rate for porcelain installation ranges from £200 to £300 per square meter, which usually covers labour, materials, and waste disposal. We always advise to get more than one quote for comparison. London Stone provides a directory of landscape contractors, giving you the option to access a list of reputable landscapers in your area.

4.What is the labour cost for laying a porcelain patio?

Based on our experience, most reputable landscaping contractors will not quote a project based on labour charges alone. Reputable firms typically offer a fixed quotation that covers labour, all associated materials, and waste disposal. To find a reputable landscaper in your area visit London Stone Connect.

Specialist Porcelain Installation Questions

1.Can you lay porcelain slabs without slurry?

Laying porcelain slabs without a slurry primer is a huge no. Porcelain is a dense material with low porosity, which means without a slurry primer, the bedding mortar will not adhere to the underside of the slab. To mitigate against the lack of porosity in porcelain, the slurry primer acts as a bond bridge between the underside of the paver and the mortar bed. It is possible to make your own slurry primer on site by mixing cement, water and SBR but we would strongly recommend that you purchase a specialist pre-mixed product like Larsen Streetscape PS Primer.

2.Why are my porcelain slabs lifting?

There are several reasons why porcelain paving slabs might lift. The most common issue is that the slabs have not adhered properly to the bedding layer. This could be due to the slabs not being adequately primed or the bedding layer lacking sufficient moisture, or the slabs not being settled firmly enough into the bedding layer. These problems often become apparent during winter when sharp frosts cause water to seep between the bedding layer and the paving; this water then freezes and expands, leading to the lifting of the slabs. Additionally, ground heave is another potential cause, which can occur on clay substrates after extended periods of hot weather.

3.Can porcelain paving be installed on pedestals?

Yes. Porcelain is a very strong material. A 600x600x20mm tile will happily sit on a pedestal system without a central support pedestal, unlike most natural stone of the same thickness. For some of the larger sizes like 1200x600 & 800x800 we would always recommend using a central support pedestal. Porcelain is used with a pedestal system extensively on roof terraces and other areas that are subject to weight restrictions.

4.Can porcelain pavers be laid on sand?

Porcelain paving cannot be laid on sand as there is no adhesive property to bind the slabs to the sand, leading to potential movement and instability over time. For the proper installation techniques, please refer to our comprehensive installation guide.

5.Should porcelain pavers be installed over concrete?

Yes, porcelain paving can be laid on top of a concrete base. Interior porcelain tiles are usually laid on a concrete base and porcelain paving, apart from the thickness, are identical to interior porcelain tiles. Builders who are experienced in laying interior tiles on concrete bases will often use the same method if they are laying an outdoor patio. Landscapers, in our experience will use the traditional paving method of an MOT sub-base, mortar bed and primed slabs.

6.How should porcelain slabs be laid on a concrete base?

When laying porcelain paving on a concrete slab, it's important to have a flat surface with the correct falls to facilitate water runoff. Any imperfections or dips in the slab should be filled with a self-levelling compound. Spread exterior tile adhesive evenly using a notched trowel before placing the porcelain paver on top. You may need to tap the paver down gently but if the concrete base is flat, the paver should find the correct level on its own. For a more comprehensive guide, please refer to our detailed installation document, that provides complete information on installing porcelain paving on a concrete slab.

7.Can you lay porcelain slabs on an existing patio?

In theory, it is possible to lay porcelain paving over an existing patio, but we do not recommend this approach. If laying on top of an existing subbase, the condition of the subbase is unknown, and any problems with the subbase could cause the new patio to fail. It is far better to do the job correctly by removing the existing paving, installing a new subbase, and then laying the porcelain slabs. This process ensures that your porcelain patio will stand the test of time.

8.What is the recommended thickness of mortar beds for porcelain paving?

For installing a porcelain patio, we advise using a mortar bed with a thickness ranging from 30 to 50mm. The recommended mortar mix ratio is 4 parts sharp sand to 1 part cement, and the mixture should have a semi-dry consistency.

9.What is the recommended gradient or fall for laying porcelain slabs to ensure proper drainage?

The British standards will soon be updating their guidance to state that the fall on porcelain paving should be 1:60, but we feel this is excessive and recommend that our products are installed with a 1:80 fall. For further information on how to incorporate falls into patios, read our detailed installation guide.

Questions about Grouting Porcelain

1.Is it possible to lay porcelain slabs without a gap, and is it necessary to grout outdoor porcelain tiles, or can they be installed with butt joints?

Porcelain paving, as with any type of paving, should not be laid butt jointed; there must always be a gap which should then be filled with a suitable jointing material. If the joints are not grouted, water can seep into the bedding layer and through freeze-thaw cycles, this water can expand and potentially cause the paving to lift.

2.What is the recommended joint size for porcelain paving slabs?

Based on our experience, the optimal joint width for porcelain paving is 5mm. A joint narrower than 5mm can result in weakened grout strength and integrity. Conversely, a joint wider than 5mm can draw attention to the jointing gaps rather than highlighting the beauty of the paving material itself.

3.What is the proper method for grouting a porcelain paving patio?

To find out more, read our comprehensive guide on grouting porcelain.

4.Which type of grout is considered the best for porcelain paving slabs?

There's a huge selection of jointing compounds available on the market, but not all of them are appropriate for use with outdoor porcelain. The chosen compound must be non-porous, which excludes options like GFTK, EasyJoint, and the other resin-based sweep-in compounds. While some contractors opt for cement based Flowpoint, which is acceptable, we recommend using exterior tile grout. Exterior tile grout has been designed specifically for use with porcelain which ensures optimal performance. Check out our full range of grouts.

Questions about Cutting Porcelain Slabs

1.What is the proper technique for cutting porcelain paving slabs to avoid chipping, and is it difficult to cut porcelain slabs?

The hardness of porcelain can pose a challenge when trying to achieve accurate and clean cuts: having the right cutting equipment is essential. One major challenge involves cutting the porcelain so that the edges don't become chipped and spalled. The best way to avoid this is by using a wet bench saw fitted with a continuous rim porcelain blade. The bench saw stabilises the paving to prevent movement during cutting, while the water cools the blade during cutting, facilitating a smooth cut. The continuous rim blade is specifically designed to ensure that the porcelain does not chip or spall, resulting in a clean and precise cut.

It's also good practice to sharpen the blade after every few cuts. This can be done by running the blade through a concrete block that exposes the new diamond grit on the blade. Tension also exists in porcelain because of the way it's manufactured. This can cause the slabs to crack during cutting. This can be overcome but cutting the two edges first and releasing the tension. Also make sure to wear eye and ear protection.

Questions about Maintaining a Porcelain Patio

1.Does porcelain paving require no maintenance, and are porcelain slabs or pavers resistant to staining?

There is no such thing as a maintenance-free patio and like any other surface material, porcelain can also stain. However, porcelain is lower maintenance than the majority of other paving options. With virtually zero-porosity, porcelain doesn't absorb stains easily and often a jet wash is all that's needed to return your patio to its original pristine condition. Any stains that do occur are likely to be superficial and they should clean up easily. One thing to be aware of with porcelain, especially with some of the lighter colours like Slab Khaki, is fallen leaves. Fallen leaves that are left on the paving for any length of time begin to break down and this can stain the paving and be difficult to move. Because of this, we advise that any fallen leaves on your patio are swept up as soon as is practically possible.

2.What are the best porcelain patio cleaners?

Because porcelain is a non-porous material, it generally doesn't require the use of patio cleaners for maintenance. Most stains are superficial and can be easily removed without specialized products. There are certain stains though that may require a specialist cleaner. Lithofin Outdoor Cleaner is designed to remove organic matter, so is the perfect product to remove those stubborn leaf stains. To remove cement or grout stains, we would recommend using Lithofin Builders Clean. When using any cleaning products, always follow the instructions on the packet and if you need any advice, contact a member of our team.

3.What is the best method for cleaning porcelain patio tiles and paving slabs?

Porcelain paving is one of the lowest maintenance paving materials you can buy. Often all that is needed is a jetwash or a broom and clean water. However, occasionally you might need a more targeted approach. We've written a blog that gives you all the information on how to clean a porcelain patio.

4.How to remove cement stains on porcelain paving?

If cement spills on your porcelain patio during installation, it's best to wipe it away before it dries. If it has already dried, gently scrape off large pieces with a wooden or plastic spatula—don't use metal as it may scratch the paving surface. Then, use a jet wash to remove any residual stains. If stains persist, apply Lithofin Builders Clean with a brush, let it sit for a few minutes, and jet wash it off. Avoid metal tools to prevent scratches and always follow product instructions when using chemical cleaners.

5.How to clean porcelain patio tiles after grouting?

After grouting porcelain paving, you might notice a fine white residue on the surface, known as grout haze. This is a common occurrence and not a cause for concern. In most cases, this residue can be removed with a jet wash and will quickly dissipate. If the grout haze is particularly stubborn, a chemical cleaning solution might be necessary. In such instances, we recommend using Lithofin Builders Clean. Always adhere to the instructions on the product packaging when using specialized cleaning products, and for further advice, don't hesitate to contact our team.

6.Do porcelain slabs go green?

Algae typically thrives on porous natural stone because it settles and grows in the pores of the stone. This problem is significantly reduced with porcelain, as it is non-porous. Algae can still grow on porcelain if the paving has been installed with an insufficient fall, leading to water pooling on the surface. This stagnant water then becomes the ideal environment for algae to flourish. In this instance, porcelain, like natural stone, can turn green.

7.Is it safe to use a jet or pressure wash on a porcelain patio?

Yes, porcelain can be jet washed, and with less caution than when jet washing stone, which can deteriorate under the pressure of the water spray. The main risk when jet washing porcelain is potentially loosening the jointing compound. For this reason, when jet washing porcelain, hold the nozzle at a 45-degree angle to the paving, approximately 30cm away, and avoid using the finest nozzle setting to protect the integrity of the joints.

FAQs — Natural Stone Paving

I have children/pets/overhanging trees – is natural stone suitable for my garden?

There is a natural stone solution for every project. Your sales advisor will be able to assist in helping you to choose the best product to suit your lifestyle. In this situation, we strongly advise that natural stone is sealed to assist with maintenance and cleaning in the future and this is even more important in high-traffic areas.

Is natural stone better than concrete?

These are two entirely different products but there are some advantages to using natural stone over concrete. Natural stone will weather naturally over time, often getting better with age, whereas concrete can lose its original colour fairly quickly. If a concrete paver is chipped or damaged then unsightly concrete and aggregate will be left on display, unlike natural stone which is a consistent colour throughout the depth of the slab.

Do London Stone have a showroom I can visit?

We have the best natural stone display centres in the country and we strongly encourage all customers to visit one of the showrooms if at all possible. There is no substitute for seeing the stone installed and pointed; it will give you a much better idea of what you’re buying than you will be able to glean from a photo or a small sample. You can also speak with our expert sales advisors who can help with any questions you may have. Our showrooms are based in the home counties – find your nearest branch here.

Is natural stone suitable for my driveway?

We supply a lot of stone for driveways and our sales advisors can help you choose a suitable product. Something hardwearing and dense such as slate, granite or basalt is a good choice as it will be easier to maintain, whilst the darker colour will help to disguise the odd oil droplet or tyre mark. We strongly advise that any type of stone used on a driveway is sealed prior to application with one of our Dry Treat products. You will also need to install a deeper sub-base for a driveway. Please speak with your sales advisor for further information.

Does natural stone retain its original colour indefinitely?

Over a period of time exposed to the elements, your stone will weather which often involves some level of colour change. This is a positive characteristic and natural stone looks all the better for age. Some stones are more prone to colour changes than others. For example, Jura Beige Limestone, Kota Brown Limestone, Kota Blue Limestone and especially Midnight Black Limestone will tend to lighten up fairly quickly when exposed to the sunlight. The majority of customers like this weathered look, however if you’d like your stone to retain its original colouring, you can apply Dry Treat Intensifia to deepen the colour. This can be done retrospectively if you change your mind later on. Alternatively, ask your sales advisor about our pre-sealing service as we can apply the Intensifia prior to delivery.

Is stone paving slippery?

We carefully select products with slip-resistance in mind. You may have noticed that some of our products have different surface finishes (sandblasted, flamed etc.). As well as enhancing the appearance of the stone, these options provide extra grip underfoot for products which could prove too slippery otherwise. Some stones have a naturally grainy texture and don’t require an additional slip-resistant finish. It is important to ensure that algae is kept under control with regular maintenance as this can make any outdoor flooring slippery underfoot, whether it be natural stone, concrete, decking, or any other material. This is especially important in north facing gardens which tend to be algae prone.

My slabs are not exactly the same colour as the sample I received. Why?

Stone is a natural product and no two pieces are ever identical. Some products have fairly subtle differences from slab to slab and batch to batch, whereas others contain a lot of variation. This makes it impossible for us to show a true representation of the stone you will receive in just one 75mm x 75mm sample. We strongly recommend that you make a visit to one of our showrooms to view the stone in situ. Again, what you see at the showroom will not be identical to the stone you receive, but the more stone you can view the better idea you will have of what to expect.

My stone is darker than the sample I was expecting. Why?

As well as the natural colour differences explained in the previous answer, stone may also appear darker if it is wet. If your stone has been cut to order in our Bespoke Stone Centre then there is a chance that it could be retaining moisture from the wet cutting process. If in doubt, allow the stone to dry thoroughly prior to installation.

Some of my slabs have small chips on the edges. Why?

Processing, handling and transportation can cause small chips to the edges and corners of slabs. Although we invest heavily in packaging and take great care to get your stone to site in excellent condition, some small chips are unfortunately unavoidable and are considered the norm within the natural stone industry. The vast majority of these imperfections will not be noticeable once the stone is installed and pointed. We recommend opening all crates and arranging your slabs before commencing installation. This will allow you to set aside any slabs with larger chips to be used for cuts.

My stone slabs have some markings on them, are they faulty?

All natural stone will have naturally occurring features such as veining, pitting and blemishes. These are all perfectly normal and are ok to be installed. However, if you think you may not like a particular prominent feature, then keep these for cuts and wastage.

FAQs — Natural Characteristics

My slabs are not exactly the same colour as the sample I received. Why?

Stone is a natural product and no two pieces are ever identical. Some products have fairly subtle differences from slab to slab and batch to batch, whereas others contain a lot of variation. This makes it impossible for us to show a true representation of the stone you will receive in just one 75mm x 75mm sample. We strongly recommend that you make a visit to one of our showrooms to view the stone in situ. Again, what you see at the showroom will not be identical to the stone you receive, but the more stone you can view the better idea you will have of what to expect.

My stone is darker than the sample I was expecting. Why?

As well as the natural colour differences explained in the previous answer, stone may also appear darker if it is wet. If your stone has been cut to order in our Bespoke Stone Centre then there is a chance that it could be retaining moisture from the wet cutting process. If in doubt, allow the stone to dry thoroughly prior to installation.

Some of my slabs have small chips on the edges. Why?

Processing, handling and transportation can cause small chips to the edges and corners of slabs. Although we invest heavily in packaging and take great care to get your stone to site in excellent condition, some small chips are unfortunately unavoidable and are considered the norm within the natural stone industry. The vast majority of these imperfections will not be noticeable once the stone is installed and pointed. We recommend opening all crates and arranging your slabs before commencing installation. This will allow you to set aside any slabs with larger chips to be used for cuts.

My stone slabs have some markings on them, are they faulty?

All natural stone will have naturally occurring features such as veining, pitting and blemishes. These are all perfectly normal and are ok to be installed. However, if you think you may not like a particular prominent feature, then keep these for cuts and wastage.

FAQs — Delivery & Lead Times

How will my stone be delivered?

Delivery methods will depend on the quantity of stone ordered and the location that we are delivering to. Local deliveries are made by our in-house transport department on a hiab (crane offload) vehicle. Our drivers are very experienced, friendly and helpful. If you’d like your crates left on a driveway or front garden, we will do our best to accommodate this subject to accessibility with the crane from the roadside and the driver’s discretion.

Nationwide deliveries are made by an external pallet freight company. This is a kerbside only service so you will need to take responsibility for moving the goods off the road and onto your own property. The pallet freight vehicles use a tail lift and pump truck which means that the driver will need a flat area of hard-standing (i.e. not gravel or grass) on which to unload.

Delivery drivers are unable to carry slabs through to your back garden so please ensure you have the relevant labour organised to facilitate this. If you have any concerns about delivery methods or suitability, please speak with one of our sales advisors who will be able to help.

How quickly can I get my order delivered?

We can usually deliver next day if an order is placed by 1pm the day before. However, it is always best to allow plenty of time to plan deliveries. Stone is not always straight forward to deliver. It may also be delivered towards the end of the day, so do not plan to lay stone on the day of delivery.

My house is on a road with width restrictions, can you still deliver to me?

Deliveries are often made on large vehicles; it is best to ensure there are no delivery restrictions for these types of vehicles or make arrangements accordingly. Restrictions could include width/height restrictions, Red Routes, un-adopted roads and permit parking bays for example. We have a variety of vehicles that can suit most needs. If in doubt please contact us beforehand.

Can I book my installers in and then order materials afterwards?

We would strongly recommend only planning work in once a delivery date has been confirmed. Although we try to keep high stock levels, even off the shelf products can sell out and become unavailable when needed. Incoming stock deliveries, special orders and bespoke orders can all be subject to delays beyond our control.

FAQs — The Ordering Process

Do I need to order extra slabs for wastage?

We recommend that customers order an additional 10% extra for wastage. This will prevent your project being held up in the event of breakages or damage on site. It also means that you can discard the odd slab that you don’t like the look of due to natural colour variation, veining etc.

Do I have to buy a full crate? I only need a small amount of material.

Not at all – just buy the quantity that you need. We know that it’s really frustrating to have to order twice as much as you need so we are more than happy to split down our crates of stone if required.

How long will my order take to arrive?

The vast majority of our stone is kept in stock, meaning that we can usually deliver within just a couple of working days – often we can accommodate next day delivery requests if you order in the morning. Occasionally we do sell out of a certain product so it’s always a good idea to get your order placed as soon as you’ve made up your mind to avoid disappointment. In addition, bespoke masonry services or special orders will take more time to process so, again, the sooner you can order the better.

FAQs — Installation

Can natural stone paving be butt jointed?

We strongly advise against this. Pointing is an important part of paving construction and provides stability for the paved area. Natural stone also has dimensional tolerances which make it impossible to achieve an even finish by butt-jointing. Butt jointing leaves gaps, albeit tiny ones, between slabs and so it can also encourage weed growth and leave the paving vulnerable to damage from freeze/thaw action.

What size should pointing gaps be?

For riven paving we recommend a minimum pointing gap of approximately 10mm. For sawn stones, we recommend a minimum gap of around 5mm. Any dimensional differences in the slabs should be allowed for in the joints to give you an even overall finish.

Do you offer an installation service?

Unfortunately not - we like to focus all our efforts on supplying the best quality natural stone paving we can. However, you can use our Connect service to find a garden designer or landscaper in your area. As with any project of this nature, please ensure that you check the companies’ portfolios carefully to see examples of previous work and obtain alternative quotations before you agree to any work taking place. We also highly recommend using a professional to carry out your landscaping installation. These will usually be contractors who are registered with a professional association such as the APL ( or BALI (

Which way up should I lay my riven sandstone? Does it matter?

There is a top and a bottom to all natural stone slabs. The top will always be the better looking side. With riven sandstone, the top will have a larger, flatter surface and the edges will taper in slightly towards the bottom of the slab. If in doubt, just get in touch and we will be happy to assist.

How do I install stepping stones?

Stepping stones should be installed the same way as the main patio; on a compacted MOT type 1 sub-base with a full bed of sand and cement mortar.

Can I install natural stone using a pedestal system?

Pedestal systems are often used where weight is an issue, for example on balconies. We recommend that stone is a minimum of 50mm thick, no larger than 600x600mm and that you also place a central support in addition to the edge/corner pedestals. Alternatively we sell a range of porcelain products which are ideally suited for a pedestal installation due to being only 20mm thick and lighter than natural stone. You also do not need a central support when using porcelain on the smaller sizes, you only need extra supports in the middle of each long edge on the 1194mm size slabs.

Has Sawn Stone got a top and bottom or can I lay it any way round?

On Sawn Stone generally, the more textured side is on top, such as sandblasted texture and calibration marks if any will be on the bottom. Also if pre-sealed the top of the stone will not absorb any water whereas the bottom will.

Can I just install the stone as it gets delivered to me?

Open and mix pallets of stone before laying. Do not just lay from one pallet at a time as this ensures an even mix of the natural variation and colour. It also gives the opportunity to spot any pieces that will want to be left for cuts and wastage.

Is the stone ready to be installed on delivery?

In most case yes, however the stone is stored outside so can arrive with residual moisture and occasionally needs cleaning prior to installation. If sealing it on site, stone needs to be allowed to dry beforehand.

Is it possible to cut Porcelain?

Yes, although it is harder to do so than with Natural stone. You will need to use a blade specifically designed to cut Porcelain. This are available to purchase from London Stone, if required. We also recommend using water whilst cutting which helps keep the blade cool and reduces the risk of chipping. Also, if the blade gets extremely hot and fails, it can result in injury not just to those around you, but others nearby as well. It is also not recommended to use a 115mm angle grinder to cut porcelain. They are too small, which means the blade may not get time to cool.

Does light coloured stone need to be installed differently?

On light coloured paving materials use a white rubber mallet to tap them down with or wrap a rag around a normal mallet. This prevents rubber marks getting transferred to the paving material which can cause unsightly stains that are difficult to remove. It is also advised for some specific stone to use white cement and river washed sand (see individual product guides for further information).

Can I install my stone in the rain?

When installing sealed stone, if carried out in the wet after freshly being sealed the force of the mallet can push moisture into the stone and compromise the sealant. This should therefore be avoided. It may also have detrimental effects to the bedding materials although your installation professional should be able to best advise on this.

I have left over material excavated from site, can I use this to lay my stone on?

Any substrate removed from the ground during excavation should not go back in as it will it not be properly compacted and would be subject to further settlement.

My Stone has discoloured over time. Why?

Stone is generally quite an inert product – if it becomes discoloured or gets marks on it, then the cause of this is usually site based and not the paving product at fault (if from a quality supplier)

FAQs — Bespoke Service

Is bespoke stone made in house?

The majority of the bespoke stone that we supply is cut and fabricated at our bespoke stone centre near to Heathrow. We can also source a wide range of bespoke materials directly from our global supply chains. The lead times for bespoke material cut in-house are typically 4-8 weeks while bespoke material from abroad can be 4-14 weeks. Generally European bespoke material is available in 4-6 weeks and any material from further afield like India and China takes 12-14 weeks

FAQs — Sealing

Does natural stone need to be sealed?

We strongly recommend sealing natural stone if it has a sawn or smooth surface. Our recommended sealant is Dry Treat Stain Proof. It can also be beneficial to seal riven natural stone. This will make cleaning and maintenance much easier and will help to prevent permanent staining to the stone. This is even more important in high traffic areas. For example, a driveway is likely to suffer the occasional oil droplet or tyre marks. Overhanging trees can drop sap, BBQs will mean spillages of drinks, fat and food, pets may tread muddy paw prints across the patio. In all these instances, it’s strongly advised that you seal your stone to help protect against permanent stains.

Please note; a sealant will not negate the need for a cleaning and maintenance program. Whilst Dry Treat will help to protect against permanent stains which are absorbed into the stone, it will not stop marks, footprints, spillages etc. from appearing on the surface of the stone. The aim of the sealant is to make these marks easier to clean off so that, with the right cleaning regime, your stone can be brought back to its best.

How long after installing the stone can I apply a sealant?

Ideally, the sealant should be applied prior to installation. This allows you to help protect the stone during the installation process and will also help to prevent efflorescence. If you’ve already installed the stone, you can still seal it retrospectively. In this case, you must ensure that the stone is clean and completely dry all the way through – please be aware that stone can appear to be dry on the surface whilst still retaining moisture underneath. For this reason, sealing is best done after a period of warm, dry weather which will mean waiting until spring or summer. Do not seal stone which is showing signs of efflorescence (a cloudy, whitish bloom on the surface, caused by salt particles being drawn up through the stone from the bedding layer). We recommend waiting at least 6 weeks after installation before applying a sealant to be sure that efflorescence is not going to occur.

What happens if you seal stone before/during efflorescence?

This will make the efflorescence much more difficult, or impossible, to remove. We strongly recommend sealing the stone prior to installation to help protect against efflorescence – we can pre-seal the stone before delivery for you. Efflorescence, characterised by white, cloudy marks, is caused by salts from the bedding layer leeching through to the surface of the stone. It is a temporary phenomenon, affecting only a small percentage of projects, which will disappear on its own over time. Unfortunately this can take a couple of weeks, several months or even longer. You can speed up the process by regularly cleaning the stone but ultimately the efflorescence must run its course.

What happens if I seal stone which is dirty or wet?

Dirty marks will be much harder to clean if you have applied sealant over the top of them. The sealant will have coated the particles of dirt, potentially missing patches of the stone itself and meaning that you may also need to reapply more sealant after you’ve cleaned the marks off. Sealing when the stone is wet means that the sealant will effectively become diluted and will not perform as effectively as it should. Again, this will require re-sealing which adds additional cost.

Is it possible to over apply the product?

The stone will reach a natural saturation point, meaning that no further sealant can be absorbed. Any excess sealant needs to be wiped away from the surface. Leaving excess sealant on the surface will cause sticky, shiny patches so it’s important to ensure that they are wiped away as per the sealing guide.

What happens if I put more sealant on one area than another?

It’s best to apply your sealant with a spray applicator to ensure an even coverage. If you follow the directions closely, apply the recommended number of coats and make sure to wipe away any excess then you should find that coverage is even across the paved area. Any areas which have not received a full application of Dry Treat, as per the directions on the packaging, will not be fully protected and will require further application.

What happens if the paving gets wet before the sealant has had chance to dry?

This is another benefit to having your stone pre-sealed by us before delivery – we seal the stone indoors and it arrives with you ready to install. If you’re planning to seal the stone after installation, check the weather forecast and wait for a period of warm, dry weather. If it does rain after you apply the sealant, the effect on your stone will depend on how quickly the stone got wet after sealing and how much it rained. A very light shower 4 hours after the sealant is applied may mean that you need to apply an extra coat of sealant once the stone is dry again. A torrential downpour or someone jet-washing the stone may require sealing again from scratch once the stone is dry.

Should I seal the bottom of the slabs for extra protection?

Please make sure that you seal the surface only – sealing the underside of the slabs could affect adhesion between the slab and the bedding layer. It also won’t offer any additional protection for the stone and will cost you twice as much money.

I didn’t wipe away all the excess sealant and now there are shiny patches of dried sealant on the surface of the stone. How can I get rid of them?

In the first couple of days or so after sealing, you should be able to remove any excess using a clean, white cloth dampened with the original sealing product. In hot weather this time window will be narrower. Acetone can be used in the same way for about the next 7 days. After this time period, the sealant will have cured and will be exceptionally difficult to remove.

How soon after sealing can I jet-wash the stone?

We recommend waiting at least 30 days before you jet-wash your paving to avoid any issues.

FAQs — Cleaning

Can I use a patio cleaner on my natural stone?

The content of natural stone can sometimes react with certain types of chemical cleaner so it’s always best to check with one of our sales advisors before you use a patio cleaner. Always test cleaners on a small area before full application and never use an acid based cleaner on limestone or basalt paving – the acid will react with the stone and cause permanent damage.

What’s the best way to remove organic marks or general dirt and grime from my natural stone paving?

For general dirt or organic marks like grass stains, mud etc. we recommend Lithofin Outdoor Cleaner. Just dilute, apply and jet-wash off as per the instructions on the bottle. When cleaning your stone, you will find that a jet-wash (possibly in conjunction with a chemical cleaning agent, like Lithofin Outdoor Cleaner) will give the best results. This is because dirt particles enter the pores of the stone and the mechanical action of the jet-wash is needed to lift them out – just don’t hold the jet-wash too close to the surface of the stone otherwise you may cause etch marks. About 600mm away is perfect.

How can I remove cement or stubborn marks from my natural stone paving?

For stubborn marks or cement based stains, Lithofin Builders’ Clean is a better choice, although this is acid based so cannot be used on limestone or basalt products. Cement is notoriously difficult to remove once it’s dry since it becomes engrained in the pores of the stone, so it’s much better to clean any spills as they happen during installation or pointing with clean water and a sponge. When cleaning your stone, you will find that a jet-wash (possibly in conjunction with a chemical cleaning agent, like Lithofin Builders’ Clean) will give the best results. This is because dirt particles enter the pores of the stone and the mechanical action of the jet-wash is needed to lift them out – just don’t hold the jet-wash too close to the surface of the stone otherwise you may cause etch marks. About 600mm away is perfect.

My stone is sealed but the surface is marked with footprints. I’ve hosed down the stone but they won’t come off – why?

Sealing your stone will help to protect against permanent stains and will make cleaning much easier in comparison to unsealed stone, however it will not stop marks from appearing or make the stone ‘self-cleaning’. Dry Treat is an impregnator, meaning that it coats the particles of the stone to around 6mm under the surface and leaves the pores of the stone open. Lesser quality sealants coat the entire surface of the slab like a varnish. This surface coat often causes an unsightly sheen and can wear away very quickly, especially in areas that get a lot of foot traffic. This is what makes Dry Treat such a long lasting and cost effective solution. The fact that the pores remain open means that mud from animal prints or rubber from shoe soles can become engrained in the pores of the stone and will need to be jet-washed to lift the dirt particles out. On pale and porous products in particular, the first couple of marks on the stone will stand out since the product is brand new and completely clean. Rather than rushing to jet-wash the stone, we advise that you allow it to weather in a little bit. Over a period of time exposed to the elements the marks will become less noticeable and the odd footprint or mark will not stand out. You can then begin a regular cleaning regime which involves jet-washing the stone, possibly in conjunction with a chemical cleaning agent, once or twice a year.

FAQs — Ethics

Are London Stone's products ethically sourced?

Yes they are. It's very important to us and something that we are firmly committed to. All of the foreign suppliers we work with comply with the ETI Base Code. We work closely with them and support them to continually improve the conditions for workers. We pay regular visits to their production sites and also work collaboratively with other stone companies to improve conditions in the broader supply chain. For more details on our ethical policies, please contact

What constitutes ethically sourced stone?

The Ethical Trading Initiative (ETI) have established a base code for ETI members to adhere too.  Although not formally enshrined in UK, European or International law, the ETI base code is the ethical standard that companies use as guidance to source products in an ethically compliant way.  The ETI Base Code:

-          Employment is freely chosen.

-          Freedom of association and the right to collective bargaining are respected.

-          Working conditions are safe and hygienic.

-          Child labour shall not be used.

-          Living wages are paid.

-          Working hours are not excessive.

-          No discrimination is practiced.

-          Regular employment is provided.

-          No harsh or inhumane treatment is allowed.

What are the main issues effecting working conditions in foreign supply chains?

Child labour is the single biggest issue that has gained the most attention in Western societies but there are many more issues that affect workers in the supply chains of developing countries.  Unsafe working conditions, low wages, bonded labour and discrimination are all prevalent in foreign supply chains.

What can UK and Western suppliers do to improve conditions for workers in their foreign supply chains?

The most important thing that a supplier can do is to understand the tiered structure of a foreign supply chain. London Stone source our Indian Sandstone products from Tier 1 suppliers. We regularly visit these Tier 1 suppliers and the working conditions are good. But where do our Tier 1 suppliers source from? This is the question to ask because conditions further down the supply chains, in the stock yards of Tier 2 and the quarries of Tier 3 are completely different to what we see in Tier 1. Only by understanding the complex structure of supply chains can we identify where we can focus our efforts on addressing child labour, unsafe working conditions, low wages, bonded labour and discrimination.

What can clients do?

Clients, especially trade clients can make a real difference in the fight to improve conditions for workers in foreign supply chains. If you buy or specify natural stone, ask your stone suppliers about what they are doing to improve conditions for workers, challenge them to prove that they are sourcing products ethically. Talk to your customers too, educate them about the human cost of buying cheap natural stone that has been sourced without any regard for the welfare of workers. It doesn't sound like much, but talking about the issues at every opportunity and supporting suppliers who source their products ethically does create leverage for change.

Is ethical stone more expensive?

The headline is that yes, sourcing stone ethically does cost more money. Delve a little deeper though and it becomes immediately obvious that sourcing ethically offers long term value for the consumer, the worker who makes the stone and for society in general. For the consumer, stone sourced ethically is produced to better quality standards and so offers better value over the life cycle of the product. It’s also safe to assume that ethically sourced stone will benefit from the other positive elements associated with a professional supply chain such as: reliability, good communication and careful packaging. A worker manufacturing stone in an ethical supply chain, can expect to be paid a living wage and to be able to work reasonable hours in safe and hygienic working conditions. This is beneficial to the individual workers health and the long-term health and social welfare of his/her family. As for the wider society, a society that properly values the welfare of all the people within it is a healthier place for everyone.

Why don’t we just walk away from imported stone and buy British Stone?

One word and unfortunately, it’s a dirty one, money! Let’s go back 25 years. A client looking to install a natural stone patio would have been faced with an extremely limited choice of materials to use. Yorkstone and Welsh Slate were about as far as the choice extended to and both materials were prohibitively expensive, way beyond the budget of the majority of people in the UK. Indian Sandstone then came to our shores and this opened the floodgates for many other types of stone to be imported into the UK for use in the garden. Imported natural stone has given landscapers and designers an amazing choice of materials to use in designing and building gardens. As long as imported stone is so much cheaper than British Stone there will always be a demand for it and we’ll never be able to walk away from it. So, imported Sandstone is here to stay which means that UK suppliers and consumers need to be at the forefront in improving conditions for workers. From both a moral and business point of view, using our expertise and experience to help improve working conditions in foreign supply chains is the right thing to do.

FAQs — Returns

There is an issue with my product. What should I do?

If you think there is any issue with a product, please contact us in the first instance. It becomes more difficult to deal with product issues once the product has been installed. If you feel that there is an issue with the product prior to installation, yet you go ahead and install the product, you are accepting the goods and you may have less recourse for a complaint if raising the issue afterwards.

If there has been a mistake with your order, the material arrives to site damaged, is faulty, not fit for purpose or not as described you have 30 days from the day of delivery to arrange a return.

If there is an issue with your product then London Stone will collect the material at our own cost.

Can I return London Stone products if I don’t like them or have just changed my mind?

You have the right to cancel up to 14 days from the date of delivery, for orders placed either online or over the phone. As long as the products are returned in the same condition and the original packaging as they were supplied you will receive a full refund or exchange for the materials. The only exception to this is bespoke or pre-sealed items, they cannot be returned.

If you exercise your right to cancel within 14 days, you will be responsible for returning the material to the London Stone depot. We can collect the material ourselves, but this will incur a collection cost. Speak to a member of our team for further information.

We will issue your refund within 14 days of the goods being returned.

Do London Stone charge re-stocking fees?

If you are a retail customer you will not be charged a re-stocking fee for any goods returned within the 14 day period. If you are a trade customer you would incur a re-stocking fee of 20%.

FAQs — Environment

What are London Stones policies on the environment?

We will conduct all our business in an ethical, transparent manner and be as environmental friendly as is practically possible.

What certifications or standards are you following in your environmental journey?

ISO 14001 Environmental Management - We are working towards accreditation for conformity to this standard which provides a framework for managing and improving our environmental performance, including reducing our waste, conserving resources, and reducing our carbon footprint.

ISO 14064-1:2018 Greenhouse Gases - Our Quantification and Reporting of Greenhouse Gases conforms to this internationally recognised standard.

By following these certifications and standards, we can ensure that our journey is transparent, credible, and aligned with industry best practices.

What role do customers play in the larger effort to combat climate change?

Customers play a critical role in the larger effort to combat climate change. Consumers have significant power to drive change through their purchasing decisions, and by choosing products and services that are more sustainable and environmentally friendly, they can help reduce greenhouse gas emissions and support a transition towards a low-carbon economy. Additionally, customers can advocate for climate action by using their voice to raise awareness and demand action from businesses and policymakers. By engaging in sustainable behaviours such as reducing energy consumption and waste, customers can also help reduce their own carbon footprint and inspire others. We believe that individual actions can have a collective impact, and by working together with our customers, we can create a more sustainable future for all.