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Blockwork

BRICKS AND BLOCKS

Many factors will affect the choice of brickwork for your Self-Build project. For example, in specific areas local planners will only allow certain types of bricks to be used to ensure that your new home blends in with other properties in the local area.

Site location and topography are also important as these will determine the optimum brick for the self builder. Therefore, choosing a brick type with the correct characteristics for durability has to be the main consideration. The wall or brickwork detail will need to last for the expected life of the building which is usually a minimum of sixty years.

BRICKS

WHEN SELECTING BRICKS FOR YOUR PROJECT YOU NEED TO CONSIDER THE FOLLOWING:k

  • Frost resistance
  • Strength & durability
  • Range of colours & finishes to last a lifetime
  • Good consistent availability
  • Special bricks for detailing

CLAY BRICKS

Clay is a highly durable material which will not require chemical otreatment or maintenance of any kind. This and its longevity make clay bricks an exterior cladding material with one of the lowest rates of repair and maintenance.

CONCRETE BRICKS

The range of Concrete Facing Bricks is now extensive with over 50 different types being produced. Coupled with a coloured mortar to enhance the overall elevation. Concrete Facing Bricks will ensure your Self Build property meets your individual requirements.

ARCHITECTURAL MASONRY

You need to decide on your external elevations at a very early stage. The choice of external materials is one of the keys to the success of any Self-Build project, but it may be influenced by outside bodies such as your Architect, Planner and Builder. The use of Architectural Cast Stone is finding growing favour within the Self-Build Market, with its ability to complement the main facing material chosen regardless of whether it is brick, render or random stone – three of the most popular external materials used for cladding purposes.

Cast Stone is comparable to natural stone as a building material in both appearance and yperformance, yet is more readily available and provides a cost–effective alternative on schemes such as Self Builds.

MORTAR

Cement based mortars are nowadays an essential part of modern thin brickwork. A mortar joint forms both a sealant and a bearing pad, sticking the bricks together while keeping them apart. Coloured mortar and variations in jointing techniques add to the aesthetics of the structure. The key to a good mortar joint is a consistent mix, colour and appearance.

LIGHTWEIGHT & SOLID CONCRETE BLOCKi

Building with block construction offers a faster build time. The blocks are generally available in two popular types - aerated or solidconcrete. Both have advantages. The most effective thermal building block is the aerated concrete block. Often used in the inner leaf of a cavity wall it can also be used in the outer leaf. Aerated is available in a variety of strengths and with its excellent thermal qualities it reduces significantly the thickness of cavity wall insulation required. Solid concrete block is a reliable form of building component providing a dense load bearing substructure. When used in a complete shell with a rendered finish it offers an effective solution to meet financial and planning constraints.

CAVITY INSULATION

For most of the past century, external masonry walls have been predominantly of cavity construction.
A cavitykk provides the most effective barrier to rain penetration and also adds to the thermal resistance of the wall. Modern energy conservation requirements demand added thermal insulation in external walls and the cavity offers the most obvious location for the insulation. However, full cavity fill may reintroduce the risk of moisture penetration and on exposed sites partial cavity fill insulation would be recommended. To comply with Building Regulations a minimum 50mm clear residual cavity should be provided in any exposure zone. Masonry materials and masonry finishes influence performance. The position of the window or door-frame likewise affects the heat loss. This can be minimised with the use of a cavity closer that should address thermal bridging and condensation.

LINTELS

Lintels support masonry, floors and roofs over openings. They are made from stone, timber, concrete and steel. Steel is lighter, easier to install and in most cases more durable. Insulated with polystyrene infill it provides excellent thermal efficiency.