Masonry technology is one of the most popular ones for constructing buildings of all kinds. However, some of you have probably wondered what makes brick constructions better in comparison to other types of buildings.
Well, masonry buildings do have certain benefits, and in this article, we will do our best to explain what exactly. You will find out what masonry technology can help you with, as well as what advantages and disadvantages it has. In addition, we will tell you about the pros and cons of the most popular kinds of masonry techniques - brick masonry, stone masonry, and concrete masonry.
What Masonry Technology Can Improve
To be short, masonry units are beneficial since they increase the thermal mass of a building. You might not be aware of it, but masonry buildings have longer lifespans in comparison to any other building type! In addition, using masonry in your construction will significantly improve its resale value.
And since we started talking about masonry, let’s remind you what it actually is. Masonry consists of building structures from single units. These units are laid and bound together with the use of mortar. Brick, stone, and concrete blocks are the most common materials used in masonry construction these days.
Masonry, as you surely know, is a popular construction technique that is widely used around the world due to its multiple advantages. However, like with any construction method, there are also certain limitations and downsides that one should be aware of. Below, you can find more information about such nuances that brick and mortar constructions have.
The Advantages Of Masonry
As we have already said, brick masonry construction (as well as any other type of masonry building) has certain benefits. These general advantages apply to all types of masonry units such as brick, stone, or concrete blocks.
- Masonry is non-combustible, which means it improves fire protection for the building and its occupants. For example, fireplaces are often made of masonry for the same reason.
- Masonry possesses a high resistance against rotting, pests, weather, and even natural disasters such as hurricanes and tornadoes!
- Masonry buildings and structures provide an attractive and elegant rustic look for a home or building.
- Mansory is durable and resistant, which is why it can withstand large amounts of compressive weight loads.
- Masonry units increase the thermal mass of a building.
- Masonry buildings have longer lifespans than any other building type.
- Using masonry in your construction improves its resale value.
- Masonry doesn’t rot, in addition, insects such as ants and termites can’t destroy its structure (unlike wooden buildings).
- Using this method in construction will cost you less in terms of labor and materials in comparison to using wood, for example.
Masonry is definitely the best way to add style, classic look, and beauty to any construction. However, if you are planning to use the masonry techniques, always be sure that you choose a team carefully to achieve your plans. It refers to any kind of masonry work be it stone, brick, or concrete masonry.
What Limitations Do Masonry Constructions Have?
Masonry is not all about benefits, of course. Like any construction technique, it also has certain limitations. This is why you should learn about them before you start working on your masonry building project.
- Consider that masonry construction involves the use of heavy materials such as bricks, stone, and concrete blocks. They cannot be transported in conventional vehicles, and in some cases, they must be ordered from special catalogs, especially stones.
- The stability of masonry structures depends on their foundation. If any settling of the foundation occurs, cracks will likely appear. They must be repaired at once to prevent moisture infiltration and damage.
- Masonry activities cannot be done during heavy rain or freezing conditions, since mortar will be severely affected, leading to the degradation of the entire construction.
- Masonry construction requires a good amount of time and proper project planning. Depending on the type or masonry, specialized manpower may be necessary.
Now that we have established the general advantages and disadvantages of masonry, let’s move on to its pros and cons. To be precise, to the pros and cons of the most commonly used materials: brick, stone, and concrete blocks.
Pros And Cons Of Brick Masonry Construction
Brick masonry is one of the oldest types of this construction method that is still used these days widely. However, despite being approved by generations, it still has certain strong and weak sides you should know about.
Brick Masonry Construction Pros
Brick masonry does not require highly skilled labor, which is good. The shape and size of the masonry units are uniform, in addition, bricks are also rather lightweight, and easy to handle and transport. And of course, they are cheaper than stones and concrete blocks!
Brick walls are thinner, and different types of mortar can be used to adhere the units to each other, depending on structural requirements. Another benefit of using brick masonry is that openings for doors and windows can easily be made with bricks, and costs are also reduced because the joints are thinner.
Brick Masonry Construction Cons
Even though brick buildings seem nearly timeless and we all know at least one house made of brick that has been standing there for decades if not longer, this type of masonry does have certain weak sides, too.
Bricks have a low resistance against tension and torsion loads, which makes them more susceptible to seismic damage. You can see that in very old brick houses that are often leaned.
Also, compared with stone and concrete blocks, bricks are significantly less strong and durable. They are also limited in sizes and colors, which narrows the area for your creativity when building a house, for example, since you can’t make it of any shape you want. In addition, plasterwork is often required as finishing, which always makes construction costs higher than it was initially expected.
Pros And Cons Of Stone Masonry
Stone masonry may seem to be very durable and quite a few people can assume that even such a building may have some disadvantages. However, it has them, and below you can find out, which ones exactly.
Pros Of Stone Masonry
Stone masonry is considered the most durable, strong, and weather-resistant. These beneficial features are all provided thanks to the natural durability of the material. No wonder stone is recommended for buildings with high foot traffic since it does not bend or dent!
One of the main advantages of stone is its aesthetic look. This natural material comes with a variety of colors, sizes, and textures, all completely natural, which means that the design possibilities are endless. Finally, stone masonry requires little maintenance and repairs, thanks to its durability, which is why this is an ideal option for those homeowners who don’t feel like doing regular repairs and maintenance fixes.
Cons Of Stone Masonry
Nevertheless, some downsides are also present. For example, stone walls are thick and heavy, which means that they will be reducing floor space. Stone also has a high self-weight, combined with low flexural strength, tensile strength, and seismic resistance.
In addition, you need to consider that stone masonry is time-consuming and it requires skilled workers since it cannot be altered, repaired, or relocate easily. That means you will have to find a skilled team of workers should you dream of getting yourself a stone house! Remember that, when using stone masonry, a careful installation will make the final structure safer for occupants.
<H2> Pros And Cons Of Concrete Masonry Construction
Concrete is another popular type of masonry construction that is widely used today. And despite being quite a modern material and having certain benefits, concrete also has a few weak sides. Read carefully to learn what you should expect if you decide to choose concrete as your construction material!
Pros Of Concrete Masonry Construction
One of the biggest benefits of concrete blocks is that they are resistant to weather, pests, mold, and fire. Also, they are available in many sizes, finishes, and colors, which gives you plenty of space for your creativity and design ideas.
Some people complain that transporting concrete blocks can be quite expensive, however, this material can be found locally in most cases so you will most likely not face any complications with its delivery. For sure, you will not have to wait until your concrete blocks are delivered from another state!
These units can also be manufactured to meet any set project requirements, and if you are into an eco-friendly building, you will be happy to find out that some concrete blocks are made using recycled materials! In addition, concrete blocks have good insulating properties against heat, sound, and moisture. It means that your concrete home will be cool in summer and properly protected from your noisy neighbors!
Cons Of Concrete Masonry Construction
Despite so many benefits that concrete blocks have, they still have a few weak sides.
- Large concrete blocks are heavy and difficult to handle. This is why they require more manpower than other materials.
- Concrete blocks also increase the amount of steel required in reinforced cement concrete structures.
- The price of concrete blocks can vary depending on the region, cement costs and availability. Like this, you will have to consider all those factors to calculate the approximate price.
- Should any plumbing issues occur in a concrete masonry structure, they are harder to solve since they can cause internal flooding.
- An effective drainage system is very important when dealing with concrete block masonry.
Now you know way more about the pros and cons of the most commonly used masonry materials. With the help of this information, you will be able to choose the material for your construction project more carefully and wisely, being aware of what you should expect from it.
So, as you can see, the construction industry can introduce many different methods of building construction to us. Over the years of use, these techniques have undergone multiple improvements, which enhanced the durability of the materials used, as well as made maintenance efforts minimal. And masonry is one of the most popular methods of construction used in building homes.
For sure, masonry also has its pros and cons, and you could see that from today’s article very well. Should you decide to use this construction method, note that you will need a professional team to be able to achieve your plans! Also, now you know that masonry work often involves time, complete and thorough planning, and sometimes quite a lot of money! But even though it has certain disadvantages, it can still be considered one of the most reliable and durable methods of construction that exist.