How can I identify different types of bricks? – Bricks are produced using a variety of manufacturing techniques which create very different aesthetic effects and performance qualities. There are three main types of bricks – facing bricks, engineering bricks and common bricks. Facing bricks are the most popular type of brick and have been the façade material of choice in the UK for thousands of years, particularly in the housing market. They are primarily used for the external walls of a building and so are generally chosen for their aesthetic qualities but they also must be weather resistant.
Soft mud (also known as stock bricks) Extruded (also known as wirecut bricks)
See the gallery below for examples of buildings that use facing bricks, or browse our collection of, The extruded/ wirecut method is the most popular method of brick production as a high volume of bricks can be manufactured quickly, around 20,000 bricks an hour.
The clay is driven through an extrusion head to form a continuous column of material in the desired width and depth. The column is then cut into smaller, more manageable pieces approx 1.5m in length known as ‘slugs’. This is then cut into bricks of the desired length by row wires. One distinctive characteristic of an extruded brick is that they tend to have perforations or core holes running through the bed of the bricks.
Perforated bricks require less energy for drying and firing and are also lighter and easier to handle. This manufacturing process produces hard, dense bricks with a more consistent size and shape, sharper arises and a more contemporary appearance. Extruded bricks are available in a wide range of styles including smooth, dragfaced, rolled texture, sandfaced or even glazed.
- Soft mud bricks have a more traditional or reclaimed appearance, offering a softer and warmer brick aesthetic, without compromising on technical performance.
- Soft mud brick moulding actually covers a number of manufacturing processes where bricks are formed using mould boxes.
- Hand-making involves the forming of the clay by hand, coating in sand and throwing into a mould.
Machine manufacturing of soft mud bricks follows the processes of hand making, recreating the hand thrown technique by throwing the clay into sanded moulds using belts. Soft mud bricks are available in a traditional sanded finish or in a handmade/creased texture, featuring a “frog” indentation rather than perforations like extruded bricks.
Waterstruck soft mud bricks are made by using water instead of sand to release the clay from the moulds, creating a distinctive textured finish. As with all other manufacturing processes the wet bricks are then dried and fired. Engineering bricks have high compressive strength and low water absorption.
They are used for their physical characteristics and not their appearance and are only classified by these properties. They were traditionally used in civil engineering and are most suitable for applications where strength and resistance to frost attack and water are important.
Examples of situations where engineering bricks are used include ground-works, manholes, sewers, retaining walls and damp proof courses. Engineering bricks are rated as Class A or Class B, with Class A being the strongest but Class B being more common. Class A engineering bricks have a compressive strength greater than 125N/mm² and water absorption less than 4.5%.
Class B engineering bricks have a compressive strength greater than 75N/mm² and water absorption less than 7%. Engineering bricks are most commonly a smooth red colour although blue engineering bricks are also widely available. Wienerberger manufactures a market-leading range of both red and blue engineering bricks.
Despite their name, common bricks are actually the least common brick types in the UK. They tend to have lower compressive strengths than facing bricks or engineering bricks and are generally lower quality. There is also less focus put into a consistent appearance on common bricks. Common bricks should not be used below ground level and are generally used for internal brickwork only.
Damp-Proof Course or DPC bricks are bricks designed to have a low absorption rate, making them suitable for use as part of a damp-proof course construction. DPC bricks fall into two classifications:
DPC1 – suitable for buildings and external works use, with a maximum water absorption rate of 4.5% DPC2 – suitable for external works only, with a maximum water absorption rate of 7%
To create better resistance to the overturning of a wall in comparison to flexible damp-proof courses, build two courses of DPC bricks with a cement-rich mortar bedding as the base of a retaining or free-standing wall. A rigid damp-proof course like this will be effective against rising damp, but not the downward flow of water.
Find products, guidance and information on how to get the most from your brickwork Learn about the different sizes of bricks and what they are used for How do I choose the right brick and mortar colour? Find out how to choose the right colour of mortar How do I choose the correct brick bonding pattern? Discover the different types of brick bonding pattern Browse our extensive range of bricks, order a sample, or contact us today.
: How can I identify different types of bricks
What is the most common type of brick?
1. Burnt Clay Bricks – Burnt clay bricks are also known as common bricks because they are the most abundant brick type in modern construction. These bricks are used in columns, walls, foundations, and more with a wide variety of purposes. When building walls, the burnt clay bricks require plastering or rendering with mortar to help improve the bricks’ strength, water resistance, and insulating ability.
These bricks are split into four different class categories based on quality. Fourth-class bricks are over-burnt, irregular in shape, and commonly broken down for use as an aggregate. Third-class bricks are poor-quality materials that should only be used for temporary structures. Second-class bricks are of moderate quality, though they have an irregular shape, rough surface, and might have hair-thin cracks.
First-class bricks are the best of the burnt clay brick classifications. These high-quality bricks have a standard shape, smooth surface, and increased durability and strength. Best For: Made for a variety of purposes, burnt clay bricks are the most versatile brick used in modern construction.
Which brick is used in construction?
Burnt Clay Brick – The most common types of bricks used in construction are based on clay as the material. These include burnt clay brick and fire clay brick. These are usually referred to as common brick, Burnt clay brick is created from clay that is either molded, dry-pressed, or extruded and then dried and fired in a kiln.
What is 2nd class brick?
Classification of Bricks Based on Quality – On the basis of quality, Bricks are of the following kinds:
- First Class Brick : The size is standard. The color of these bricks is uniform yellow or red. It is well burnt, regular texture, uniform shape. The absorption capacity is less than 10%, crushing strength is, 280kg/cm 2 (mean) where it is 245 kg/cm 2 (minimum). It doesn’t have efflorescence. It emits a metallic sound when struck by another similar brick or struck by a hammer. It is hard enough to resist any fingernail expression on the brick surface if one tries to do with a thumbnail. It is free from pebbles, gravels or organic matters. It is generally used-
- in a building of long durability, say 100 years
- for building exposes to a corrosive environment;
- for making coarse of concrete.
- Second Class Brick : The size is standard, color is uniform yellow or red. It is well burnt, slightly over burnt is acceptable. It has a regular shape; efflorescence is not appreciable. The absorption capacity is more than 10% but less than 15%. Crushing strength is 175kg/cm 2 (mean) where the minimum is 154 kg/cm 2, It emits a metallic sound when struck by another similar brick or struck by a hammer. It is hard enough to resist any fingernail expression on the brick surface if one tries to do with a thumbnail. It is used for the construction of one-storied buildings, temporary shed when intended durability is not more than 15 years.
- Third Class Brick : The shape and size are not regular. The color is soft and light red colored. It is under burnt, slightly over burnt is acceptable. It has extensive efflorescence. The texture is non-uniform. The absorption capacity is more than 15% but less than 20%. The crushing strength is 140kg/cm 2 (mean) where the minimum crushing strength is 105kg/cm 2, It emits a dull or blunt sound when struck by another similar brick or struck by a hammer. It leaves fingernail expression when one tries to do with the thumbnail.
Which bricks are cheaper?
Price of Bricks by Type – The price of bricks varies considerably by type. Common red clay bricks are the least expensive while high-end facing bricks and antique brick cost the most. Depending on the type of brick you choose, you’ll pay anywhere from $0.40 to $10 per brick,
What is standard brick?
With a standard mortar joint of 10 mm, a repeating unit of bricks laid in a stretcher bond will be 225 mm lengthwise and 75 mm in height, If bricks are laid cross-wise, two 102.5 mm depths plus two mortar joints gives the same repeating unit as the length of one brick plus one mortar joint, i.e.225 mm. If they are laid height wise, three 65 mm heights plus three mortar joints gives the same repeating unit as the length of one brick plus one mortar joint, i.e.225 mm.
This makes it straight-forward to create complex patterns of bricks within the standard co-ordinating size, See Types of brick bonding for more information,60 standard bricks laid in a stretcher bond (lengthwise) are required for every square meter of wall, To help develop this list, click ‘Edit this article’ at the top of the page.
|Type||Characteristics||Imperial length x depth x height||Metric length x depth x height|
|Blocks||Constructed using concrete or cement, They may include a hollow core to make them lighter and to improve their insulation,||440 x (varies) x 215|
|Modular||Commonly used for the construction of buildings and homes,||7-5/8″ x 3-5/8″ x 2-1/4″||194 x 92 x 57|
|Jumbo modular||7-5/8″ x 3-5/8″ x 2-3/4″||194 x 92 x 70|
|Queen||Slightly smaller and more cost effective than a modular brick,||9-5/8″ x 3-1/8″ x 2-3/4″||244 x 79 x 70|
|King||9-5/8″ x 2-3/4″ x 2-5/8″||244 x 76 x 67|
|Engineer||Used where strength and water/ frost resistance are required. Very sturdy and reliable to use.||7-5/8″ x 3-5/8″ x 2-13/16″||194 x 92 x 71|
|Closure||Used to finish off a wall, especially at the corners||7-5/8″ x 3-5/8″ x 3-5/8″||194 x 92 x 92|
|Norwegian||Substantial bricks that can be used in loadbearing walls while still looking good, They have a natural beauty to them.||11-5/8″ x 3-5/8″ x 2-13/16″||295 x 92 x 71|
|Monarch||Commonly used for long stretches of wall and are very strong.||15-5/8″ x 3-5/8″ x 3-5/8″||397 x 92 x 92|
|Utility||Very versatile and can be used for a range of construction projects,||11-5/8″ x 3-5/8″ x 3-5/8″||295 x 92 x 92|
|Norman||These are classic industrial bricks for construction projects and commonly come in red or white.||11-5/8″ x 3-5/8″ x 2-1/4″||295 x 92 x 57|
|Roman||11-5/8″ x 3-5/8″ x 1-5/8″||295 x 92 x 41|
|Quad||7-5/8 x 3-5/8″ x 7-5/8″||194 x 92 x 194|
|Danish hand mould||7-5/8″ x 3-5/8″ x 2-1/4″||194 x 92 x 57|
|Meridian||15-5/8″ x 3-5/8″ x 3-5/8″||397 x 92 x 92|
|Ambassador||15-5/8″ x 3-5/8″ x 2-1/4″||397 x 92 x 57|
Note, there may be some variation in these sizes through history and from one supplier to another. Other than the standard rectangular brick, a number of special shapes exist for particular circumstances:
Radial, tapered or arch bricks, Angle and cant bricks that form returns and chamfers. Bullnose bricks with rounded corners. Capping and coping bricks, Cill bricks, Plinth bricks, Slip bricks (thin bricks that can be used for cladding ). Soldier bricks, that form returns for soldier courses.
Bricks can also be cut or hand made to size,
What is standard brick thickness?
Brick Dimensions & Sizes – Per Square Foot Chart Glen-Gery offers brick in many different sizes across solid, cored or frogged body types, and from Modular size all the way up to a Double Titan Plus size. The most popular brick size is a Modular brick measuring at 3-5/8″ thick by 2-1/4″ high and 7-5/8″ long. Thin Brick are also available in many of the sizes listed below.
The largest unit manufactured by Glen-Gery is a Double Titan Plus, which is 7-5/8″ thick and high by 15-5/8″ (nominally 8x8x16). The longest unit manufactured by Glen-Gery is a Roman Maximus size, which is more than 3 Modular brick long (23-5/8″).
What is Wall type 4?
TYPE IV: Heavy Timber Walls of masonry or other noncombustible walls with a 2 hour fire rating.
What are fourth class bricks?
Fourth Class Bricks – Fourth class bricks have poor quality and not used for construction. These bricks are crushed and used as aggregates for making of concrete. The bricks which are over-burnt and due to this these bricks are brittle. These bricks are easily breakable and not suitable for construction.