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Bricks, blocks and mortar (sand & cement) calculator.

This Calculator/Estimator will provide the quantities of bricks, blocks and mortar (sand & cement) required for a given area for metric bricks (single & double skins) as well as 100mm, 140mm & 215mm blockwork. It will also provide approximate brick work prices.

Please enter the dimensions in the white fields below and click calculate to display the results. See below for advice on brickwork.


Dimensions  
Length of Wall in Metres 
Height of Wall in Metres
Total m2 

Materials
Block Wall Nr Units Mortar m3 OPC (Kg) Sand (Kg) OPC
25Kg Bags
Sand
25Kg Bags
Sand
bulk bags
Plasticiser(ml)
100mm(4")
140mm(6")
215mm(9")  
Brick Wall      
100mm(4")
215mm(9")

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Brick Mortar

  • Mix Design - mortar is a combination of binder (cement or lime) with sand. Either with or without fillers or additives such as plasticiser. Good mortar design fills the voids in a well graded sand with the binder or filler. This is what produces the ratio.In general it is good practice to use the weakest possible mortar mix that is compatible with the brick or block being used and the exposure, unless otherwise specified. This mortar mix will exhibit less shrinkage and produce a superior brick/mortar bond, weaker mixes also tend to be more flexible.
  • Aesthetics - The colour and joint profile chosen will affect the overall appearance of the brickwork.Whether the aim is to contrast against the brickwork or blend subtly there is a wide choice.
  • Durability - Water and frost are the main elements that will affect brickwork. However, as the frost resistance of the mature mortar increases with the proportion of cement, designation (i) and (ii) mortars are considered more suitable for severely exposed applications such as in copings, cappings and cills and below DPC level. Designation (i) mortars should be used for paving. If there are high levels of soluble salts and/or the brickwork is likely to be saturated for periods then the Ordinary Portland Cement should be replaced with sulphate-resisting Portland cement.
  • Rain - Resistance to this can be achieved or increased by good adhesion, well filled joints and an appropriate joint profile.Tooled bucket handle or weather struck joints are the most appropriate for exposed areas. Whilst recessed joints are only suitable for moderate exposure.
  • Structural - In design calculations, it is assumed that both the compressive strength value of the appropriate mortar designation is achieved in practice and that the joints are completely filled with mortar. This underlines the importance of good building practice.
  • Adhesion - Strength of bond is affected by the suction rate of the brick, the mortar constituents, water content and the weather. Where the suction rate of a brick exceeds the optimum value of 1.5kg/m2/min, it is recommended that the bricks are wetted prior to laying, particularly in hot & dry weather conditions.

Good Practice

  • Brick Mixing - Natural materials such as clay bricks have characteristic variations in shade, colour and texture. However because patching or colour banding would not be desired in the finished work, it is important to blend the bricks. Although this is carried out at manufacturing there is still a need to further carry out this process on site, this is best achieved mixing from as many packs as possible and mixing from corners rather than layers to maximise colour consistency.
  • Mortar - The correct preparation is key to the overall aesthetics, durability, weather resistance and structural performance. In general terms the correct proportions of binders and sand is necessary for consistent mortar strength, avoidance of colour variation and a good bond between brick & mortar. This should be achieved by the use of batching boxes or buckets, avoid the use of shovels for proportioning by volume.

Brick Laying

  • Docking It is accepted practice for bricks with a high absorbency to be wetted prior to laying. This procedure adjusts the suction rate of the brick to promote good adhesion between the brick and the mortar. However, bricks should not be soaked during the process as this could lead to subsequent staining problems. See above. Bricks with a low suction rate should never be wetted because they might 'float'; mortar that is mixed too wet will have the same effect.
  • Tooling The bricklayer uses his skill and experience in determining when to begin tooling the joints after placing the bricks in mortar. Early tooling should be avoided as this can produce a dragged effect on the mortar surface and the cement fines may be drawn to the surface resulting in an unsightly patchy bloom on the joints in the mature work.
  • Winter working If the temperature of unhardened mortar is less than 40C,the performance of the joints produced will be inadequate. Consequently, bricklaying should stop when the air temperature reaches 30C and falling, unless the mortar temperature can be maintained at a minimum of 40C until it has hardened. Bricklaying can be resumed when the air temperature rises to 10C and is expected to continue rising to above 30C over the bricklaying period.

Further information can be found on our other brick/mortar calculator.






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