Installing Brick Slips
INSTALLING BRICK SLIPS
On a daily basis we receive many enquiries from our customers asking information about installing brick slips. We have liaised with one of our preferred installers and have made this installing brick slips video. See our Higgins TV YouTube channel for other informative videos about our products and services.
Trick Of The Trade – Please don’t forget to either paint on a sealant primer or PVA to water solution (we would recommend a 1 part PVA to 3 parts water) to a wall before bonding brick slips. This will seal the wall so that the substrate doesn’t absorb too much of the moisture held in the adhesive before it has time to set.
Installing Brick Slips – Wall Adhesive
Brick slips are attached using cement based adhesives. We offer many different types for use with a gun (just like a sealant gun) or can supply cheaper alternatives that can applied using a tiling trowel.
The most common method of installing brick slips is:
Clean and prepare the surface,
Apply primer or PVA solution,
Mix the adhesive according to the pack instructions,
Apply a small amount to an area you can lay before it goes off,
Use a trowel, rake and then stick on the brick slips,
(You can do this ‘free hand’ but you will get better results using spacers).
Standard brick work has a 10mm joint spacing. Experienced builders and DIY’ers can do this by eye but for the rest of us we can use spacers. T shaped spacers are the best type to use.
You should always use a levelling line when laying brick slips. A wonky course line will be very displeasing to the eye. Lazer levellers are relatively inexpensive and quicker and easier to setup and to use than the traditional stick and string method. You could also use a spirit level but over long lengths you could find you still get a curved course.
Pointing the brick work can be the most time consuming part and has a huge impact on the overall finish of the project. There are several ways to point brick work each with their pros and cons.
Traditional Trowel Method
Even to the experienced builder this is a time consuming task. Once pointing mortar has been mixed a pointing trowel is used to push pointing mortar into the joint. Try not to get too much on the surface of the brick as this can be very hard to remove. Once filled you then use a finishing tool to produce a common pointing finish. Once pointing mortar is partially set you should use a wire or stiff brush to get rid of excess on the surface.
Pointing Guns And Pipping Bags
You can buy time saving tools to inject mortar into the joints. The key to using these tools is to have a very wet mortar. If you use too stiff a mix it will not flow correctly. Piping the mortar into the joint usually ensures a completely filled joint without any voids. If you need advice on these products, let us know and we will send you URL links to products you can purchase.
Voids in pointing
It is a must to avoid any voids when pointing, especially on external jobs. Voids will fill with water and the expansion of frozen water in cold weather will crack the pointing.