bulding the internal walls in breeze blocks

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17 Nov 2011 12:00 AM by carl9 Star rating. 136 posts Send private message

Hi, on my new build, currently going up in Murcia, I have been considering the benefits of having the inner wall bilt from breeze blocks rather than the standared blocks the Spanish builders typically use that i think are made of terrcotta.

My logic is that proper breeze blocks will be firmer to drill holes into  (our current place is hard t hang things on the wall as they don't seem strong enought to take the weight of TV's etc.). I also wonder if they would have beeter insualtion qualities than normal Spanish blocks and that they would have better sound insulation.

We were considering having the foam cavity wall insualtion installed but it's an extra €2,000 so if the breeze block idea is a good one I woner if we'll need that additional insulation?

What do others (in the know) think? Also, would they likely be any more money to install than standard Spanish block?

Many thanks, Carl



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17 Nov 2011 1:29 PM by normansands Star rating in Kent. 1281 posts Send private message

 well breeze blocks will provide the strength you are looking for and be better acoustically than the usual "talk-through" partition if standard UK block thickness is used.

Why would internal partitions affect thermal insulation of the exterior I wonder?

the world-wide trend is to provide greater and yet greater insulation to assist with ever rising energy costs.



N. Sands

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17 Nov 2011 2:09 PM by johnzx Star rating in Spain. 5255 posts Send private message

The problem of hanging heavy things on walls. 
If you don't find a joint (between the ‘bricks’ ) then one way is to drill the hole larger than required and 'pump in' force in some 'wet mix' cement.  Allow it to set and then drill the hole required.  Adding bicarbonate of soda to the mix will quicken the setting time, but may cause corrosion to iron (steel) screws
There used to be a company which sold sun roofs, which were like sun blinds in that they extended from the outside wall, with fixing only into the wall..  One advert showed a car 'parked' on the extension. I called the company to find out how they made the fixing so strong. They pumped in a resin based bonding.

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17 Nov 2011 4:12 PM by carl9 Star rating. 136 posts Send private message

Hi Normansands, sorry for the confusion. I'm talking about the inner wall of the exterior wall. By that i mena that the wall is double thickness, so the plan is to have the inner wall in breeze block. Also would want to do it for internal wallsa but that's more about sound proofing and strength than any thermal benefit.

Cheers, Carl

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17 Nov 2011 4:30 PM by johnzx Star rating in Spain. 5255 posts Send private message

I would be inclined to visit the building materials supplier , or better still if you have one, the architect. 
  The normal building practices usually exist for a reason, and are maybe better for the conditions which apply locally.
 One would have a different spec for a house on the Costa Del Sol than for one in the cold North.   In the south, the hollow bricks provide air circulation, which helps keep the house cool.
It would appear that breeze blocks per se, no longer exist as they are / were made of clinker from gas production stations. There are of course other types of ‘thermal block’ but I think 'local professional' advice is needed before you make any decisions.

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17 Nov 2011 6:59 PM by guslopez Star rating in Lorca, Murcia.. 745 posts Send private message

Just remember that the blocks are concrete & hollow, unlike the UK where they are solid. I've used 50 x 20 x 10 cm blocks on our place  for both internal & external walls. What they should be using is 'termoarcilla'  which is a ceramic bloque about 33cm in width with far superior insulating properties that allow single wall construction. These days you can find them being used in the UK.

See here:http://www.myetymology.com/encyclopedia/Termoarcilla.html



Developed in Germany & in use in austria , switzerland, etc.


Todos somos Lorca.

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17 Nov 2011 7:36 PM by normansands Star rating in Kent. 1281 posts Send private message

well it does help to be clear on all questions

John is right about actual clinker but there are many types of building block that have taken over which can be used for both inner leaf and partion walls.

generally the lighter, less dense materials provide better thermal insulation with the more dense better for acoustic insulation but both of course depend on thickness to increase those properties, the addition of closed cavities within thermal blocks can provide lightness and cost saving whilst not affecting strength significantly, the wider the wall the stronger.

I have no experience of cooling inner leaves by ventilating cavities and frankly doubt that Spanish construction actually uses it but perhaps John can elaborate,  it hardly seems possible if they are mortared together.

 the usual reason for ventilating the main cavity is to clear any dampness that may have penetrated the outer skin

all traditional standards are under review constantly as energy prices and "global warming" increases.

cavity filling can be done later but your main chance to get ahead of the game is now before construction.

Good Luck



This message was last edited by normansands on 17/11/2011.

N. Sands

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17 Nov 2011 8:59 PM by normansands Star rating in Kent. 1281 posts Send private message


thank you for that, the trouble with being retired from construction is that you can be overtaken by latest developments. I have yet to see these blocks but cannot see any disadvantages if costs are right.

They are no wider than a cavity wall, do not require wall ties and are presumable installed with a mortar break around the centre tp preserve cavity.

Good stuff



N. Sands

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17 Nov 2011 10:00 PM by carl9 Star rating. 136 posts Send private message

Thanks everyone - all good advice. I'll meet up with the builder again. So far I've yet to hear a compelling reason from him as to why the standard tiles they fit are better. I'll also speak to the builders merchants to see what they say.



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