Top 3 Best Polymeric Sand Alternatives You Should Know About

Last Updated on January 22, 2023 by Heenan

Best Polymeric Sand Alternatives

Polymeric Sands have been the pinnacle choice for paving, making walkways, and so much more. Nevertheless, recently people are noticing all the negatives of using polymeric sand for the task and are shifting to better substitutes. Now, do you know what those polymeric sand replacements are?

If your answer is no, then this article is what you need. Here you will find alternatives to polymeric sand that will subdue all the side effects you have been facing. And finally, it will provide you with the results that you have always desired.

Besides, there is so much helpful information available in the article. Therefore, let us get to the good stuff!

The Top 3 Polymeric Sand Alternatives

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There are tons of items in the market that can be considered as an alternative to polymeric sand. However, the ones we are discussing in this section are the ones we deem as the finest. So, without further ado, let us introduce you to the best replacements for polymeric sand.

#1. Midwest Products Co. Premium Stepping Stone Cement Mix

Pros

  • It can be used for either one 12-inch stone or two 8-inch stones
  • Durable and long-lived
  • Ensures a smooth and astounding finish after every use
  • Highly affordable
  • An overflowing amount of the product is delivered to you

Cons

  • Due to its heavyweight, carrying it around is a tough task

Compared to the others, the cement stepping stone is incredibly durable and affordable. However, if you want the best of the best, then this product from Midwest Products Co. is what you have been looking for. Are you interested in finding out what this product is capable of? Then keep on reading, my friend!

Quantity:

In under 10 dollars, you get a heavy quantity of the item. If you are wondering how much, the answer to your question is that you will be provided with 7-pounds of sand. Such a volume is sufficient to assist you in carrying out loads of heavy-duty and light-duty work with ease.

Plus, 7-pound of the product is enough for you to use for either 12-inch stepping stones or two 8-inch stones.

Durability:

The sturdiness of the product is off the charts! It can withstand around 250 pounds of pressure (roughly 110 kilograms of force by area). Hence, we are quite confident that once you have used it, your project will be able to tolerate some intense stress without failing.

And such marvelous robustness is due to its unique mix of excellent cement, latex, and curing agents. These are also known to enhance the item’s endurance greatly.

Outlook:

Also, the unique combo of the merchandise is responsible for offering you a product that will give you an excellent and smooth finish every time.

Verdict:

There is no better alternative than this item if you want something sturdier, more reliable, and more long-lasting than Polymeric Sand. If you don’t believe us, check it out yourself!

#2. Roccia 3-Pound Real Sand with Natural Color

Pros

  • It can be used for numerous genres of decor-based tasks
  • Clean and beautiful-looking sand
  • Storing it and transporting it anywhere is an effortless task
  • Highly affordable
  • Natural grains raise the longevity and attractiveness of your project

Cons

  • Not an ideal option for heavy-duty projects

Why waste big bucks on other Sand deals when you can spend much less and still be bestowed with all the remarkable features and benefits those expensive companies offer? Just look at the specifications, and you will know what we are talking about.

Color:

You see, the product has a natural color, which means that it has an elegant and authentic look. Therefore, making this a fine selection for preparing infinite decor-based projects, such as flowering, plantations, candle places, sand arts, etc.

On top of that, it is a 3-pound pack, which is more than enough for you to complete various projects.

Quality:

When it comes to quality, Roccia follows a stringent procedure. The merchandise is thoroughly checked and cleaned. Therefore, the inspection ensures that there isn’t a single speck of dust, debris, or dirt present within the packet.

Hence, this guarantees that you are presented with a beautiful product that is equally perfect for functionality.

It contains natural grains, ensuring the item looks real and stunning. Also, its natural grain improves the long-lasting factor of your project further.

Convenience:

The entire item is just a mere 3 pounds and has an incredibly compact dimension. This means that carrying it and storing it anywhere you want is a breezy task.

Verdict:

Is money a concern? Do you want fine-looking sand that has a natural composition? Well, if you have said yes to any of these questions, this product is perfect for you. Moreover, it grants many other perks that will immediately get you hooked on it.

#3. Teton Supply Co. (180-MESH) Foundry Green Sand

Pros

  • It grants you a finer finish and long-lasting results compared to the others
  • You receive a plentiful quantity of top-class sand
  • It can be used for several kinds of projects, including Pewtering and Metal-casting
  • There is no need to buy anything extra
  • Effortless storage

Cons

  • The entire package is heavy, so moving it is a strenuous task.

Are you looking for a promising option for metal casting? Well, you can call off the search party right this second, as here you have stumbled upon the product that is ideal for you! Besides, this sand is suitable for metal casting, but you can also use it for Pewter and much more.

Cost-Efficient:

You will be able to reuse the sand anytime you want. This prevents the need to buy the entire package repeatedly after using it only a single time. By the way, these are not why it is such an excellent choice for metal casting or other projects.

Composition:

It has a very ultra-fine formula that contains premium 180 Mesh Olivine raw sand (Magnesium Iron Silicate) with a dash of Bentonite blend. These features provide a smoother finish and enrich the permanence of your project.

Multi-Purpose:

No need to worry about mulling over or doing anything extra after you have purchased the package. All you have to do is add water to the product after buying it, and then you are all set to do your task.

Quantity:

Aside from the effortless usage and numerous other features, the package provides you with an abundant amount of sand. When purchased, you will be delivered with approximately 10 pounds of sand, which is more than enough for an individual to do numerous projects from one purchase.

Storage:

Storing the item is a very straightforward task, and it will not take up so much space.

Verdict:

You need this product if you want A-grade casting sand that will grant countless perks, benefits, and functionalities. The best part is that you do not have to keep repurchasing additional items to get this going, as the quantity given is impressive. Spare a glance at this one.

Polymeric Sand Problems

The section will introduce you to some of the grave problems of using Polymeric sand. So, if you have ever wondered why everyone is shifting from polymeric sand, this section should tell you why!

#1: Polyhaze

Have you noticed that flimsy white stain is left after using polymeric sand for paving or aggregating? Well, that is a chemical problem incorporated with polymeric sand (and is called Polyhaze), and it is practically impossible to find a solution for this.

#2: Maintenance

If you are into DIY, using Polymeric sand to make walkways or anything might not be wise. Anything made by this product will start eroding after some time. In short, after using polymeric sand for around 2 to 3 years, there is a high chance that you would need to get your projects replaced.

#3: Water Erosion

Speaking of erosion, pathways or anything made from Polymeric sand will start eroding at an outrageous rate, especially if exposed to water. Imagine you finish your project, and it rains heavily that day. You go out to check your project and see it is heavily eroded; how frustrated would you be?

There are instances where polymeric sand erodes as fast as 120 minutes, which means they are not an ideal choice for outdoor projects or places where the project is at risk of encountering water.

Other Alternatives to Polymeric Sand

Now you know what problems you might encounter using Polymeric sand. It’s time to find the solution, and we assure you that you will find them in this section.

#1. Cement

Cement

Another fantastic option and alternative to polymeric sand is cement. We use them for constructing heavy-duty structures and whatnot. They have durability and unyielding factors that can rival the strongest metals on the planet.

These can be used for multiple purposes and are versatile enough for light-duty and heavy-duty projects.

However, you might need many utensils and equipment to work efficiently with these products. Nevertheless, its other attributes and affordable cost make it an excellent option for several heavy-duty projects.

#2. Builder’s Sand

Builder’s Sand

Unlike cement, which requires hefty tools and a tad rigorous effort, the builder’s sand is a much more effortless option. Besides, it is the most commonly used replacement for Polymeric Sand.

The first reason it is a favored choice is that it is relatively easy to find. So, due to their abundance and affordability, they are fancied by construction workers quite a lot. Though they have an erosion problem, subduing it is quite a simple task.

If you are wondering how to tackle this problem, you need a mechanical compactor. Using the device ensures that the sand has settled down properly, enhancing the total joining element for the item.

#3. Stone Dust

Stone Dust

Stone dust is the aftermath of stones being crushed and churned by a crusher. As it is practically made from stone, it is a much more sturdy and reliable variation of sand, which automatically makes it a superior choice over Polymeric Sand. You can use it for countless tasks such as patios, paving, etc.

Furthermore, they are a fantastic selection if you opt for something that assures an exceptionally smooth and even surface. They also stop the formation of weeds and are highly affordable. Unlike all the others, using this one is probably the easiest.

Lastly, it has a non-porous attribute. Such a characteristic prevents rainwater or water from any source from seeping into the structure.

#4. Envirosand

Envirosand

As the name suggests, these sands are made from an eco-friendly component. We are trying to say that its composition holds no harmful chemicals, and hence, there are no chances of Polyhaze-ing.

If there is no Polyhaze, then the need for maintenance is reduced, which also should significantly cut down your costs.

Now that we are talking about maintenance, there is a big chance that you won’t even have to worry about that for a long time if you use this product. This is because it has a self-healing attribute, which allows you to do the task on its own.

#5. Permasand

Permasand

Well, these are another excellent option over Polymeric sand. These types contain numerous other mixed components.

Due to that, when you are using these for a specific job, you will be able to utilize all the perks from all that diverse array of materials used in its making, and you will not have to buy them separately.

Moreover, these are fantastic when you are looking for something capable of firmly locking two or more joints together. And due to their special additives, these harden with moisture.

Therefore, boosting your project’s endurance and improving your work’s overall reliability and robustness.

Frequently Asked Questions

#1. What can I use instead of polymeric sand?

Answer: There are tons of alternatives to polymeric sand. You can opt for cement if you want something that offers you superior durability and versatility. If money is a concern, you can opt for either builder’s sand or stone dust.

However, we suggest you go for stone dust as it is more durable than the two.

Now, we have a treat for all you environmental activists out there. The Envirosand is made from materials that are non-toxic and allows effortless cleaning (also reduces the cost of maintenance).

#2. What is the best sand to use between pavers?

Answer: Apart from polymeric sand, two other types of sand are superior for use between pavers. One of them is bedding sand! Using these, you will notice a fine shine after finishing your work. This is because the friction between the sand particles automatically smoothes them out.

Another superb alternative is the filling sand. These can be called the best option for filling paving joints. Besides, due to their varying grain size and ragged edges, the sand locks together, ensuring smooth and well-fitted results.

#3. Is paver sand the same as polymeric sand?

Answer: Paving sand is the name given to sand used for paving, which is indicated in the name of the item. And polymeric sand is a type of sand used as a form of paver sand.

Along with polymeric sand, there are countless other sands that one can use for paving, which you will find in the previous section, “Alternatives for polymeric sand.”

#4. Does polymeric sand wash away?

Answer: Polymeric sand has a complex composition. Therefore, you will find numerous chemical binders and glue within that composition. So, to apply the sand, you have to spread them on your project and then apply water to it. Due to its adhesive properties, the water will bind them together firmly.

However, there is a concern regarding using these for paving. Even though they have an attribute that lets them bond more firmly after being exposed to water, the water is also causing heavy erosion between the two.

So, it would be wise to choose your raw materials by giving them much thought.

#5. Are alternatives to polymeric sand safe to use for me?

Answer: Of course, they are safe! These have no deadly chemicals in their composition and can be used for countless tasks. Even if you are worried, there are certain types like Envirosand, which is entirely environment-friendly!

Moreover, they are also cheap. Unlike polymeric sand, they don’t contain any chemicals that initiate the Polyhaz-ing process (which is the white-ish leftover you can see on top of pavement, walkways, or something similar created from polymeric sand).

Final Words

As time passes, newer and more efficient types of sand are coming into the business. Therefore, it is time to upgrade your paving skills and see better results by using the alternative to polymeric sand we have provided in this article.

Meet the Authors

Heenan, Cannon, Mack, and Theodore are four outdoor enthusiasts. Each of them is a handyman and off-road adventurers. Dealing with different tools, automotive accessories, products related to home like sealers are some of their day-to-day tasks. They run this website to share their thoughts on various items they think are good or bad for others. Learn how they started as The Handyman Guru, and why they decided to start this blog..

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