Why use Bricks in Ireland
Updated: Dec 6, 2020
Almost all bricks available in Ireland are EN-771 'F2' rated
What does this mean ?
It means that the bricks have to be fully frost-resistant.
Samples of the bricks are randomly tested in CERAM Laboratories to withstand 100 freeze / thaw cycles. Manufacturers websites will confirm that the product is certified to the EN-771 'F2' standard
If you are an architect you can confidently specify bricks certified this way
If you are a self-builder , or a 'design and build' contractor you know that you are investing for the long term
Bricks are sustainable when considered over the life of the building they are used to construct.
Many cities in Northern Europe feature brick built properties that date back to the 17th and 18th Centuries.
If you have been to Bergen , Stockholm , Talinn, Helsinki or Copenhagen you will know that even in these harsh climates , buildings still remain from past centuries.
Many will point to the energy required to make bricks as being un-sustainable .
However , bricks are often compared to other facade materials which last just a fraction of the life-span .
the 2016 census in Ireland showed that 245,000 homes were empty - mostly due to poor construction on low budgets.
Many of the concrete block and render homes will eventually be knocked down and replaced requiring new materials with their own carbon footprint
Homes built with brick last longer for sure
Even the simplest brick-built home has an air of permanence with character.
Being small masonry units , bricks are easily produced into Special Shapes to enhance the design and individuality that make brick-built homes beautiful.
If it is true that 'beauty is in the eye of the beholder', then given the enormous range of bricks available , it should not be difficult for a designer to find an aesthetically pleasing brick choice.
For example : Traditional build for Ireland - rendered and painted or Brick ?
Example 2 :
What's not to like ?
4. Timeless :
Whether it is a trip to Limerick , Waterford or Dublin - you will find buildings dating back to the 19th Century - built with brick
The conclusion ?
If you are looking for a building material that is Durable , Sustainable , Beautiful and still in existence long after we have passed on ........
Brick is best
Next time : What makes some one a brick expert ?