Large Gaps between Patio Slabs

Hi, I have large-2 inch-gaps between the slabs in my patio. Chair legs, an d feet, are constantly falling into their depths. I am wondering if there is any way to fill them other than wood? I am not a carpenter...I consider ed sand or pea gravel, or even caulk or the sand mix for pavers... I just d on't know because the gaps are so large and my patio is huge! It is roughl y 30 feet long and 7 feet wide. Help, I would love to get some use out of m y patio without anyone being injured. And, I would like to be able to fix i t myself without spending thousands of dollars.
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On 03/25/2015 02:29 PM, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

Dig some of the dirt out so that the cracks are at least 2" deep, then fill with patching cement. May take a little bit of work but the cost will be very little.
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On 3/25/2015 3:29 PM, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

Has this crack been slowly opening up over time. If so, you might have a sinkhole forming.
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snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com writes:

I'm guessing those 2 inch gaps are where wood used to be?
You can fill it with cement as another poster recommended but it will look bad. If you don't care what it looks like, cement is the easiest, cheapest way to go.
I think it would look better with wood. You can stain the wood and pound it back in.
I had a similar situation and I rented a jack hammer, etc. etc.
Just built a whole new patio using pavers.
Pavers, sand, rock dust, compactors, jack hammers, none of that stuff is expensive.
The work is hard though.
The patio job permanently cured my back pains. Years of twinges and shooting pains in my back and then around age 55 I made all that stop with a few weeks of hard labor. That was 15 years ago.
I use the patio a lot now.
--
Dan Espen

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On 03/25/2015 02:23 PM, Dan Espen wrote:

Split pavers would fill in the gaps, but take much time on your knees. I did this around a pool area and grouted around the pavers. Looks OK but I don't think I would do it again. Used tire irons to dig out the sand in between the slabs to level the tops of the pavers.
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On Wednesday, March 25, 2015 at 5:24:02 PM UTC-4, net cop wrote:

+1
2" gaps? Wood having been there is the only logical thing I can think of. And assuming that's what it was, the gaps are straight, putting wood back in is going to look a lot better than cement patching. Also, if pathched with cement, it's going to crack along one edge or the other, large spans need relief cuts.
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wrote:

I don't think that begins to tell her how heavy and hard to use a jackhammer is. Unless she's over 160 pounds, I doubt she could go 3 minutes with one. And most men would have to work up to more than 20.
She doesn't want to rebuild the patio, just fix it.

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Actually, I'm 5'9" and 180 lbs. Not a big person, just average, but I'll admit, in above average shape.
I rented an electric jackhammer. I worked with it until the whole slab was in small pieces. About a day. I didn't find it all that hard. You just hold on and pull the trigger. When it gets stuck, just rock it back and forth and pull it out. I was surprised to find my legs all bruised when I was done.
Those bruises were sort of brownish, and didn't hurt.

I know, I talked about ways to "fix" it. But there is a right way and a wrong way. I just mentioned what I did as an example of the right way.
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How large are your patio "slabs"? How many gaps are we talking about?
It would help if you could post a picture somewhere and give us a link.
If you have large pavers (2'x2' or less) in a grid separated by gaps, there may have been something like moss or grass planted between them at some point. It's an interesting look, but not real useful for chairs and tables. If that's the case, you're probably better off pulling up the pavers and relaying the pavers without the gaps. Keep in mind the new patio will be a bit smaller without all the gaps.
Otherwise, if you have large slabs, I don't think sand or gravel would hold up well in 2" gaps. Depending on how many you have, I would probably mix up some bagged concrete from the home center. Then fill the gap and trowel it smooth. Ideally run an edger along each side to round over the edge. That will look nicer and reduce chipping. If you want to get fancy, you can add some color to the concrete so the gap fill becomes an "accent" strip. :)
Anthony Watson www.mountainsoftware.com www.watsondiy.com
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snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

is there a solid cement footing under the slabs or are the slabs separate and put on a compacted sand/base of some sort?
if the slabs are movable, take the crud out from in between them and put them closer together. the patio will be smaller, but the gaps will be gone. no cost other than labor. the problem is that perhaps the slabs weren't put close together because they have slanted sides that can't be pushed closer together. you won't know until you look...
other alternatives are to put other stuff in the gaps. cement isn't a good choice if the slabs are still moving or are not on a solid footing. it's hard to match anything like that and cracks will form anyways. pea gravel and sand will not hold up to a chair leg poking in them.
still it might look ok to find other pavers to cut and fit in between, but that is not going to be cheap to do all that cutting/labor.
songbird
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Amanda, it sounds like the original patio had 2x lumber dividers that have rotted out. I had good luck repairing one by digging out the rotted wood and dirt and filling the spaces with bagged asphalt. The hardest part was creating a way to compact the asphalt. I used a 2 wheel dolly with a lot of weight that had hard wheels that fit the slots fairly well. Still working fine.
On 3/25/2015 2:29 PM, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

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