Alternative Construction Methods
In Europe clay blocks are particularly popular but throughout the UK they are pretty much unknown and certainly vary rarely used. They are in fact particularly versatile being used for both load bearing and partition walls. Clay blocks are fired as clay bricks are, in kilns at around 1000 degrees, making them durable and viable in our damp climate but lightweight with it’s honeycomb structure. This makes a good alternative to the standard concrete block that dominates british construction today.
If you are looking to extend your property, or start a new build project it would be worth considering clay blocks for your build as they do come with some advantages. Firstly speed, they are fast to build with. In addition to this their honeycomb structure results in air pockets which creates an effective insulating effect as well as providing great airtightness performance. The blocks tie in vertically creating an air tight seal and have particularly thin joint mortars which creates less waste.
There are some disadvantages with clay blocks, the main being cost as they are imported from Europe. Also some knowledge of the product is advantageous as specialist fixings are required such as wall ties, but any competent builder should be able to work with them efficiently provided they use the correct tools and follow manufacturers guidance.
It is stated that clay blocks can meet current building regulations insulation standards on their own without the addition of further insulation but additional insulation would be advantageous so it is certainly worth discussing this option with your architect.
If you are looking to extend your home, renovate your property or commence a new build Dylan Morton Design and Architecture can provide advice and expertise on everything from design to building and completion, so for a no obligation consultation please give us a call.
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