Josephine wrote to us with the following enquiry:
We are looking at building our own house. I would like to ask if it is possible when you are building the walls of your house to use differrent bricks. For example, we want a facebrick house and since you have to put two layers of bricks, can we use the cheaper brick on the interior wall, since we are going to plaster it any way and the quality face brick on the exterior side because that's the look we want?
Les responded as follows:
There is no difficulty using different bricks for the inside and outside layers of a brick wall. It is, however, best to use the same type of bricks for both skins of the wall. That is, if you are using baked clay facebricks on the outside then you would use cheaper clay stock bricks (ROK bricks) on the inside.
If you are using cement or calcium silicate bricks face bricks on the outside, then you would use standard cement bricks on the inside.
When mixing baked clay face bricks on the outside and cement bricks on the inside skin, the only issue is that the expansion rate between clay bricks and cement bricks is different and you will need to be aware of how to manage that difference in certain areas of the construction so that cracking due to expansion and contraction does not occur.
If you are looking at building your own home, please have a look on our website at the various articles that I have written on the NHBRC. It is a legal requirement that an NHBRC registered builder enrolls and constructs any new house with that organization and that you pay the required fees. If you are not going to use a registered builder, then you need to apply for registration as an "Owner Builder" and then apply for exemption from enrolling your house. There are fairly hefty fines and other issues to consider if you ignore the NHBRC.