Have you ever noticed that some bricks have three holes in them? You may not think much of it, but this unique design has an equally unique purpose. Here at It’s The Brick Guys, we’re what you call “brick experts.” We love to learn about why bricks are made the way they are because that knowledge equips us to install them better. Read on to learn why some bricks have holes in them.
Brick Holes Create a Sturdier Network of Mortar
Most brick structures are held together by mortar. The more the mortar can cover the bricks, the sturdier the structure will be. The holes in the bricks give the mortar channels to flow through, connecting the layer above with the layer below. Each brick is locked in through its core and its edges, which creates a firm and durable wall.
The brick holes, known as cores, are spaced far enough apart not to compromise the structural integrity of the bricks. Thus, the holes do not weaken the bricks; they strengthen them. The mortar that flows in the holes during installation provides an extra layer of stabilization. That is critical for long-lasting masonry.
Cored Bricks Are Lighter and Less Expensive to Manufacture
Bricks are incredibly heavy. Masonry is a back-breaking industry, and the holes help each brick weigh a little less. When you’re working with thousands of bricks in a day, each core’s weight adds up fast.
Speaking of fast–cored bricks dry faster during manufacturing. They’re also faster to install because they are lightweight, which saves everyone involved time and money. Whether you hire bricklayers to handle the work or you tackle a brick project yourself, you’ll benefit from the lighter weight that comes with cored bricks.
Brick Cores Allow the Use of Reinforcement Bars
Some brick structures need extra support. For example, a brick retaining wall may need reinforcement bars to ensure it can withstand the weight of the soil and water behind it. The brick cores provide a channel for the rods to go into. Some bricklayers add horizontal bars across each row of brick to sandwich the vertical bars in place. The masons here at It’s The Brick Guys adjust their bricklaying strategies to fit each project’s unique needs.
Holes Provide More Flexibility for Expansion and Contraction
Bricks are porous materials that expand and contract with changing temperatures. In Michigan, many construction materials go through significant changes during our freeze/thaw cycles. The holes within cored bricks allow for more flexibility in these situations, so the bricks are less likely to break under pressure.
Simply put, the little holes inside bricks ensure your masonry lasts for decades to come. For more information about masonry maintenance and preservation, contact It’s The Brick Guys at (833) 627-4257.