Wienerberger looks at considerations to detect when specifying brick

At its most simplistic, a home is bricks and mortar, so making sure that the right products are selected for a certain project is vitally important. Here Richard Brown, Category Marketing Manager for Walls at Wienerberger, elaborates on the considerations you should regard when choosing brick for a building project.

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ithin the UK, brick is the most popular facade option for the housing market, with durability, security, solidarity, longevity, versatility and cost-effectiveness all being key contributors to the product’s sustained prominence within the market.

There are many variables but most people are surprised that typically the cost of bricks on a new detached property is around £5000. That is less than 3% of the overall build cost and much less than most people spend on the average kitchen, yet bricks have such an important impact on ‘kerb appeal’.

From the way the building looks and the feel the build exudes, to how it fits in with its surroundings, the use of the right facade can have a major impact on the overall aesthetic of a project. Add to this the fact that it’s also the most difficult aspect to alter at a later stage – you can easily modify your kitchen or bathroom but it isn’t quite so simple to change the fabric of the building – the importance of selecting the right brick for a project becomes crucial, especially when there are over 1000 different types available within the UK. With such a selection, choosing the right bricks for a project can be a daunting thought, but before jumping in, it’s important to consider the factors involved with selecting the right product.

One key consideration is to ensure you’re fully aware of the style that you want your project to encompass. Do you want to create something with a contemporary finish, or do you have a more traditional and ‘olde worlde’ feel in mind? We see the rulebooks being thrown out with beautiful soft mud bricks being used in open-plan, contemporary settings where we used to have them in the ‘traditional’ category. One aspect that will obviously play a part in this area is local planning permissions, as this will have an impact on the features that are deemed suitable in different areas of the country. It’s also worth noting, that brickwork isn’t always considered just an external material, but can also be used inside the home to create a unique feature. What are the differences between bricks that make an impact on the look of a property?

Brick type

There are several different manufacturing methods for producing bricks, with each one offering different characteristics. Handmade, stock, wire-cut and water-struck are all different types of clay bricks.

Size

The standard format of bricks in the UK is 215 x 102.5 x 65mm – however, there are several different size variations available that can have a massive impact on the look of the property.

Colours

Obviously, the colour of your chosen brick will play a huge factor in the look and feel of a project and within the UK market there is a huge number of colours available, from plains, multi-coloured and reds to yellows, white and blacks – and even glazed bricks.

Textures

Similar to the colour of your brick, the texture also has a major impact on the style of a building. Creased, handmade and ‘tumbled’ effects provide a look of reclaimed bricks, whereas monotone, smooth products are more popular for contemporary looks.

Blending

Currently, there is a growing trend for projects to incorporate a mix of different products to create their own signature blend for a property. This gives customers the chance to create a project that is entirely unique in appearance and character. We’re able to offer this service, with access to the largest range of bricks available in the UK, meaning that customers can mix-and-match from a huge selection of colours and textures for complete individuality.

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