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BUILDING a new home is the biggest single life-time investment made by the average person.  It is therefore important that the homeowner familiarise himself with the range of building materials used in the construction of a new home and compare their performance characteristics and qualities.

Substitute building materials and new construction methods have entered the building industry arena.  Although developments of this nature are welcomed, it is advisable to fully evaluate their long term availability and performance.

For example, bricks are an essential element in the majority of homes built, but there is often a perception that there is little or no difference between various types of bricks on the markets.

The benefit of owning a house built of clay brick has long term cost advantages and includes the following:

  • Durability and ease of maintenance resulting in long term cost savings: A home built in clay face brick is virtually maintenance-free when compared to plastered painted external walls which require regular maintenance.
  • Better resale value and aesthetic appeal: Clay face brick retains its aesthetic properties for a lifetime.  Furthermore, unsightly cracks and poor workmanship cannot be temporarily disguised as is the case with a painted wall.
  • Insulating and inert properties: Clay masonry insulating properties are known to be superior to virtually all other material with respect to fire resistance and thermal and acoustic insulation; the inert properties of clay provide for a low co-efficient of expansion, in turn fewer cracks occur when building with clay brick.

For the contractor and developer there are inherent advantages in specifying and working with clay bricks.

  • Clay bricks comply with building regulations.
  • Clay brick is a familiar product to semi-skilled artisans as it is a traditional building material.
  • Clay bricks have shown exceptional versatility when used in complex designs and applications.


In view of the versatility of clay and the various performance characteristics available in clay brick, the Brick Industry has prepared a simple code for the use of clay bricks.

Clay face bricks are available in three categories:

  • FBS – Face Bricks Standard:

These are uniform in size and shape and require no further decorative or protective treatment.

  • FBX – Face Bricks Extra:

These are manufactured to the highest degree of tolerance with respect to size, shape and colour uniformity.

  • FBA – Face Bricks Aesthetic:

Selected or produced for a highly individual aesthetic look derived from deliberate non-uniformity of size, shape and colour.

Traditional clay plaster bricks coded NFP – and are suitable for general building work which will be plastered or rendered/plastered.

Clay bricks for special applications are:

  • NFX – Non Facing Extra:

Highly durable, these bricks are ideal for use in areas below ground level in damp situations such as retaining walls where appearance is not of importance.

  • E – Engeneering grade:

Purpose made to required engineering specifications for structural or load bearing purposes, engineering grade bricks are available in face and non face clay categories.

Brick manufacturers have constantly endeavoured to provide cost effective solutions for te benefit of the homeowner, builder or developer.


“Over the years clay brick manufacturers have learnt to deal with the traditional cycles common to the South African economy.  Innovative production techniques and smarter distribution and packaging systems have led to effective rationalisation in various areas.

“In turn, this has enabled the industry to contain costs well below the rate of inflation and the benefits are being passed on to the end user.”


Layout stacks of bricks along the face sides of walls and about 600mm from the walls.
Supply the stacks by drawing from at least six cube packs simultaneously.



  1. Where possible, remove large pieces of mortar with wooden or nylon scraper (not metal) which could damage the brickwork.
  2. Wet the brickwork thoroughly with water.
  3. Wash the wall down with a dilute solution of proprietary mortar cleaner, used as per the manufacturer’s instructions.
  4. Remove any residual acid left in the brickwork, by washing down with water.


When removing mortar smear from brickwork having a potential to exhibit Vanadium staining, the following final step is recommended.

  1. Wash the wall down with a 20% solution of Potassium Hydroxide.

Do not wash the wall down with clean water afterwards.

Note:  Light coloured face bricks are particularly susceptible to severe staining if incorrect cleaning procedures are followed – if doubt please consult your brick supplier.

Claims will not be accepted after bricks are laid.



  • Build a reference panel of site before face work begins.

  • Make sure you have received the bricks you ordered.

  • No brick should be laid if there is any doubt regarding class, colour or quality standards.

  • If delivery fails to meet the required standards, notify your supplier or distributor within 48 hours.

  • Manufacturers accepts no responsibility after installation.

Please refer delivery note for conditions of sale.

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