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Advantages and Disadvantages of Using Bricks in Construction

Advantages and Disadvantages of Using Bricks in Construction

There is a famous saying about construction work by Walt Disney. That is,

“You can dream, create, design, and build the most wonderful place in the world…but it requires people to make the dream a reality.”

This sentence is certainly whooping the importance of construction workers to build any kind of building of someone’s dream. It can be a home, offices, hospitals, educational institutions, bridges, arches, pavements, etc. But, the condition here is that it needs to be strong and durable. Our world is never free from the risk of natural calamities, and keeping that thing in mind, one should do construction. A well-planned building can be expected as strong enough to survive all these calamities.

The strength of a building depends on the materials it is made of. The most used material to build a structure is brick. It is a solid object that is the most important and basic unit of a building. It can be used in various colors, sizes, and orientations to get different surface designs. Different countries follow different methods or materials to build buildings. But, brick is the most common thing to use for this purpose, whether it is a developed or developing country.

Singapore is a well-developed country, and they are very cautious about construction works. They have a statutory board of BCA (Building and Construction Authority) under the Singapore government. The board ensures that buildings in Singapore are designed, constructed, and maintained following high standards of safety through its building regulatory system. It also ensures sustainability which may create a debate on BCA vs brick. There are so many alternative materials of brick that can be stronger. Also, there are low-standard materials that cost lower prices than bricks, such as recycled tools.

From this perspective, let’s have a glimpse of the advantages and disadvantages of using bricks in construction work.

Before discussing the pros and cons of using bricks, we must know their types. Different types of brick are being used in construction work. Some of them are-

  1. Concrete bricks.
  2. Sand lime or calcium silicate bricks.
  3. Unburnt clay bricks or sun-dried bricks.
  4. Fly ash bricks.
  5. Burnt clay bricks.
  6. Engineering bricks.
  7. Porotherm smart bricks.
  8. Fire bricks.

These are the most commonly used bricks in construction work.

Advantages

  • Bricks have uniform shapes and sizes. There is no need for skilled labor to do the construction work. One can easily place bricks one after another.
  • Bricks are not so heavy. It is light. Gripping and moving it is easy and comfortable.
  • Bricks are easily available whether it’s a town, semi-town, or village area. It is preferable economically.
  • It has compressive strength that is good enough for an ordinary construction.
  • Its different types of size and orientation render different surface textures. The natural and earthy tones of brick provide impressive and lasting color contrast that is suitable in any setting. It may come in different colors, such as striking rich chocolate color, glorious vintage red color, creamy almond, or light golden sand. Even it can be shiny metallic. It adds a distinct style to any type of home.
  • The most important factor about bricks is- they are reusable and recyclable.
  • The demolition of a brick structure is quite easy. It takes less time and requires low-cost expenditure.
  • Bricks are significantly fire resistant which ensures safety issues. That’s why bricks are chosen essentially as construction material. Bricks are a secure investment for life.
  • It is energy efficient.
  • Sometimes bricks don’t need paint or other treatments to maintain beauty and durability. Even after more than 30 years, they will remain strong, reliable, and relatively maintenance-free, which will save you on the cost. That’s why bricks might be called low-maintenance pieces.
  • The most daring quality of a brick building is its ability to withstand the test of time, even under the toughest environmental conditions. Keeping aside the issues of painting, sealing, or other high-cost finishes, brick is waterproof. Its impeccable performance will last a lifetime.
  • Carbon neutral bricks are available, which works remarkably to reduce embodied carbon. This can be considered as a blessing for our nature to keep the environment good.

Disadvantages 

  • It is best not to use bricks at high seismic zones because of less tensile strength.
  • Its manufacturing process is traditional and causes environmental pollution.
  • As the bricks need to be placed in a perfect pattern, sometimes it is time-consuming for the construction workers as brick homes are built by hand, which requires only one brick at a time.
  • Brick has the quality of absorbing water. In the absence of air, it causes fluorescence. So it’s a matter of risk for those buildings which are placed in shabby places. It could develop bacteria that is unhygienic for kids, especially for the babies who just started crawling and walking.
  • Though a brick surface doesn’t need painting, cleaning its surface is a tough job to do.
  • Its manufacturing process is quite tough. Sometimes it causes life risk to the workers working in brickyards. The black air produced by burning bricks is very harmful to the environment.
  • Bricks may come in different colors and shades. In the case of low quality, the color changes when it comes to the contact of sunlight for a long period of time.
  • Brick masonry is less durable than stone masonry.
  • Though brick masonry doesn’t need coloring, it needs plastering, which increases the cost.
  • Non burnt bricks are instructed to use for temporary building construction, which holds a very high risk if people use them for the long term. 

We hope that this elaborate discussion on the advantages and disadvantages of bricks will help you to choose the right material for construction works.

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