With spring on the way, many people are turning their attention to their hardscaping projects. Whether you’re a hardscape professional or a homeowner working on smaller projects, choosing the right work boots, along with the right supplies, is extremely important. To help you make the right selection, we have prepared the following article in collaboration with Techo-Bloc.
Founded in Canada in 1989, Techo-Bloc designs and manufactures high-end landscaping and masonry products, including paving stones, retaining walls and masonry stones. Techo-Bloc marries art and science to deliver innovative, resistant and durable products.
Planning your hardscaping project
For any hardscaping project, big or small, there are a few essential steps to follow in order to ensure its successful completion. Whether you’re building a paved patio on your lawn, an entryway or a basin, you should always start by developing a work plan. Once you have designed your plan, you can then gather the tools and supplies you will need to get your project off the ground: natural stones, paver, gravel, grass, seeds, etc.
When it comes to landscaping stones, Techo-Bloc offers an array of products to meet your needs. With a variety of shapes, textures and colours, these stones will help you create the ambiance you seek. Minimalists will appreciate the Smooth Para HD2, while fans of the great outdoors will love Borealis slabs that mimic the esthetics of wood. For more details on the Techo-Bloc product offering, view the 2018 catalog.
Though hardscaping is an art form, remember that the work involved comes with its share of risks:
Standing for long hours, kneeling or having to stay in awkward positions;
Exposure to the whims of Mother Nature: hot sun or beating rain;
Working in dust or mud;
Using potentially dangerous equipment: sharp tools, shovel, saw, mower, etc.;
Handling heavy supplies and equipment;
Contact with irritants, such as chemicals, pesticides, oil and abrasives.
For all these reasons, it is important to choose safety boots that can handle the conditions you may encounter when doing hardscaping work.
What to look for in a great work boot
As a leading manufacturer of work boots since 1934, we understand that when it comes to choosing a new pair of boots, every little detail matters. Since your footwear is your best ally at work, it should be perfectly suited to your work environment.
When shopping for your next pair of boots, look for the following qualities:
Comfortable and lightweight
On any given work day, you wear your work boots for hours on end, which means they should be comfortable even after an intensive 8-hour shift. Our new AGILITY™ collection features the most lightweight boots on the market, including the 5605GT, 5625GT, 5705GT and the 5725GT, making them ideal for hardscaping work.
Even when it’s not raining, you will sometimes need to work in damp soil. A boot with a waterproof and breathable membrane (AIRFLOW® or GORETEX®) will keep your feet dry, while whisking away any dampness. Plus, on hot days, a breathable membrane will help eliminate heat from your boot and keep foot odour at bay.
It can be difficult to know in advance the types of terrain where you will work. Special attention must be paid to the type of outsole you choose to make sure it provides the stability and resistance you need. You want to look for a boot with a rubber outsole. All ROYER soles are slip-resistant and durable. The 6-inch 6100VT and 6120VT models and the 8-inch 6200VT and 6220VT models have a skid-free, oil-resistant rubber sole that offers protection from electrical hazards.
A boot with good ankle support is an important feature when it comes to avoiding an injury that could keep you off your feet and slow down your project. Choose a 6-inch or an 8-inch boot rather than sneaker-type model.
With all this information in hand, you are well prepared to get the equipment you need before kicking off your project. One last pointer: make sure the boots you choose meet the safety standards set by your employer.