For centuries homeowners and builders have chosen brick as their cladding of choice. Brick meets the balance between beauty and durability. There are hundreds of styles and textures to choose from, and because they come in a wide variety of sizes, there are bricks to meet every homeowners taste and budget.
Historically, bricks are permanent. Ancient structures show that because bricks are made from natural materials, such as clay and stone, they are very resistant to natural damage. Most deterioration of ancient masonry structures is caused by man, not nature. Bricks are made of various clay mixtures and were once molded by hand. Today, the clay is forced through a die, then cut to size with wire. After drying, the bricks are fired in a kiln. This results in a very hard, permanent product with many advantages. Bricks never need painting, a good rain is a sufficient wash in most cases, it ages well, and requires minimal maintenance. They are highly resistant to wind, water, fire, sun and pest. Bricks can be made of other materials than clay. Concrete brick is made of cement, graded aggregates and water. While these bricks are generally less expensive, and lighter, they are not as color fast or water resistant than genuine clay brick.
TYPES OF BRICK
Building Bricks: Building bricks come in a variety of shapes and colors, but are primary red and rectangular. They are the most commonly used brick, and are generally the least expensive. There are three grades of red brick available; non-weathering brick for interior use, moderate weathering brick for use outdoors in warm climates, and severe weathering brick for use anywhere.
Face Bricks: These bricks are used for decorative purposes. They come in different textures and dimensions. Because they are made with more care and are usually rated for severe weathering, they tend to be the most expensive brick.
Fire Bricks: Fire bricks are used to line fireplaces and furnaces or any location where protection from heat is required. Because they are made of special clays (usually yellow in color) and fired at much higher temperatures, they can withstand intense heat.
Paving Bricks: These are the hardest of bricks. They are more durable than building bricks and are usually sized for use without mortar. They are used in driveways, parking areas and sidewalks.