There’s a certain appeal to incorporating exposed brick into a home. One method is to use solid bricks during the construction of a home. However, it’s also possible to use a brick veneer to achieve a similar appearance – but what exactly is a brick veneer?
Many modern homes utilize brick veneers instead of solid bricks. While solid bricks are used during the construction of a home, brick veneers can be added during or after construction. Brick veneers use a single layer of bricks, which are lightweight, easy to install, and cheaper than full bricks. For this reason, it is sometimes called thin brick.
If you’re unsure of what exactly brick veneer is and how it’s used in homes, we’re going to break down what you need to know. Once we’ve taken a closer look at what brick veneers are, we’ll look at the advantages and disadvantages of using this material in your home.
What Exactly Is Brick Veneer?
Exposed brick is a popular interior design choice amongst homeowners. Whether exposed brick is used indoors or outdoors, it can add texture and character to a space. There are numerous ways an exposed brick aesthetic can be incorporated into a home.
One of these methods is using brick veneer, which is also known as brick slip or siding. However, many consumers are unsure of what exactly brick veneer is and how it differs from other brick surfaces. Up until the mid-20th century, solid bricks were commonly used in construction. This type of brick construction utilized two layers of brick.
On the other hand, Brick veneer is when a single layer of brick is used as an exterior layer. When solid bricks are used in a home’s construction, the bricks hold up the building’s structure. However, brick veneer is added to an existing structure and instead relies on this structure for support.
Brick veneer has been widely used in properties constructed since the 1950s. While brick slips can be used in newly constructed homes, they can also be installed as part of a renovation project. Now that you understand what brick veneer is, you might be wondering why people choose to use it.
Why Do People Use Brick Veneer?
There are a number of advantages that brick veneer has over traditional bricks. Let’s take a look at them and see if you should consider it for your house or project.
#1: Brick Veneer Is Lighter
When compared to natural bricks, brick veneer is far lighter. The lightweight nature of this veneer is attributed to how the single layer of bricks, which are often thinner than solid bricks. The exact weight of the brick veneer will depend on the type of veneer used. Brick wall panels are another cost-effective solid brick alternative.
#2: Brick Veneer Is More Affordable
One of the main reasons brick veneers are commonly used comes down to their affordability. Brick veneer is cheaper than solid brick. When you compare costs, you’ll find that a brick veneer will cost up to 45% less than full brick. The cost of installing, cleaning, and maintaining brick veneers is also cheaper.
#3: Brick Veneer Has A Simpler Installation
Not only are installation costs lower for brick veneers, but the process is easier! Unlike solid bricks, which need to be installed during a home’s construction and require two layers, a brick veneer can be added at any time. Without the need for dual layers, the installation of brick sliding is much simpler.
It can make a dirty facade look a lot better. Facades can get dirty over time or the style can be outdated. Adding a layer of brick veneer can change the curb style appeal of a house completely.
#4: Brick Veneer Resembles Solid Brick
Another great benefit of using a brick veneer is that it closely resembles solid bricks. In fact, you’ll have to closely examine a property to determine whether full bricks or a veneer is used. For homeowners who want to incorporate exposed brick into their homes, brick veneer is the easiest way to achieve this traditional style.
#5: Brick Veneer Provides Insulation
Although solid bricks are more durable than veneer, full bricks are not effective insulators. Due to the way brick veneers are installed, insulation can more easily be used. From walls to fireplaces, the insulation provided by brick veneer allows it to be utilized in almost any area of a home.
#6: Brick Veneer Preserves Structural Integrity
Despite not being a structural element, a brick veneer can effectively preserve the structural integrity of a home. Due to the placement of these masonry veneers, the underlying structure of a property is better protected.
Should I Use Solid Brick Or Brick Veneer?
In the above section, we outlined the different reasons homeowners choose to use brick sliding. Of course, brick veneer is lightweight, cost-effective, easy to install, and provides better insulation. However, you might be wondering whether you should use solid brick or a brick slip.
After all, there are many benefits solid brick offers. In addition to being more durable than veneers, solid brick allows for greater resistance against fire, pests, and winds. Brick veneer will offer less resistance to these elements due to the single-layer design.
As we explained, full bricks can only be used when a house is being constructed. To install solid bricks, a mason will be required from the start of your home’s construction. Due to the structural role full bricks play in a home’s construction, solid bricks cannot be used once the house has been fully constructed.
Brick veneers and wall panels, on the other hand, can be installed during or after the construction of your home. There are a lot of DIY kits that allow you to do this. Due to these factors, the state of your home’s construction will determine whether solid brick or brick veneer can be used. Regardless of which you use, brick surfaces can elevate the appearance of your home.
Since the 1950s, brick veneers have been increasingly used in homes. When installing this veneer, only a single layer of bricks is needed. This results in brick veneer being cheaper and easier to install than solid bricks. Brick veneer is cost-effective, lightweight, easy to install, and easier to clean and maintain. Unlike solid bricks, a brick veneer can be installed after a house has been constructed.