• Saturday, July 13, 2024
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Building with clay bricks lightens weight on foundation, says expert

Building with clay bricks lightens weight on foundation, says expert

An expert in building and construction materials, Kenneth Vincent, has advised that builders should use clay bricks in order to lighten the weight on the foundation of their buildings.

Vincent, a material engineer with Clay Industries Nigeria Limited, explains that a clay brick wall is lighter than a sandcrete wall, hence the weight imposed on the foundation is considerably reduced.

According to him, building with hollow clay bricks also has the advantage of resistance to heat transmission, making it best for the Nigerian climate, as its thermal insulation is superior to other forms of construction, just as its high thermal mass means brick buildings are energy efficient.

Vincent said most regular sandcrete blocks are neither climate friendly nor of good standard as they cannot withstand external pressure.

“A standard brick block is not just fire proof, but also bullet proof and can withstand any kind of pressure from an external source,” he assured, saying “with its major component as clay and water, processed under a heat of 800 degrees centigrade, the natural colour and beauty of a standard clay brick is supreme to any other building block.”

He pointed out however that the low-cost of sandcrete blocks have forced builders to continue building with sancrete block, saying “unknown to many, brick block is far more durable, has zero-maintenance cost, non-rusting, and its longevity period is higher compared with regular sandcrete block.”

Read also: Brick matters: Nigeria’s chance to improve housing, industry (1)

According to him, brick blocks are environment friendly with a high volume of colour retention capability and can maintain colour. “The bell ringing sound from the block is also another proof of its quality assurance when compared with sandcrete blocks,” he said.

These days of climate change, brick blocks are more climate friendly and with its ability to absorb heat and trap cold air, it cools building interiors easily, and the significant cost savings from the low maintenance costs of clay brick also contribute to the reduction of greenhouse gas emission.

Clay brick has not only restricted itself to building blocks as there are other exciting finishing also available, such as the roofing brick that is durable and environment friendly.

There are also burnt floor bricks (tiles), burnt step bricks (stairs), corner fencing unit, and burnt clay wall facing bricks. The availability of different configurations and designs of sun-breakers, especially the fledor types, shamrock type, double curved octagonal are all designed to aid ventilation in buildings.

In the last few years, more Nigerians are becoming aware of the importance of using bricks to build instead of sandcrete blocks, he noted, urging architects and builders to encourage their clients to build with the climate friendly bricks, he believed was already gaining popularity.