A quick guide to concrete blocksPosted on: November 29th 2023 • Posted in: Concrete Blocks
Concrete blocks are used everywhere. From housing developments to office blocks, schools to factories. Some of them you can see and some you can’t but one thing is certain, as concrete is the most commonly used building material, they will be around for a long time to come.
Concrete blocks are made from a mixture of cement, fine and coarse aggregates and water. Well known for their inherent strength, they can also be reinforced, offering increased load bearing capability, simply adding to their versatility. Nowadays there are a wide variety of products available and with the introduction of our Greenbloc technology, CCP Building Products Ltd can offer low and even ultra low, carbon concrete blocks at no extra cost, so its even easier to choose the environmentally friendly option.
What are the advantages of concrete blocks?
Concrete blocks offer excellent thermal insulation, which helps to prevent heat loss during the colder months, reduce energy bills and keep buildings cooler in the summer, by keeping heat out. They also provide great acoustic insulation and will limit noise transfer within a building and from external sources of loud noise, such as traffic or machinery, making them a great choice for so many settings.
Concrete blocks are resistant to fire and they come in larger sizes than bricks, so building with them can speed up the construction and uses less mortar.
What types of concrete blocks are there?
Concrete blocks can mainly be categorised into two types: solid and hollow concrete blocks.
Solid concrete blocks
Solid blocks are heavier, typically made from denser aggregate and, as a result, they are often chosen for structural load bearing masonry work because of their strength and stability.
We offer a wide range of solid blocks varying in size and strength, which are suited to a number of different applications. Our Solid Dense Blocks are a cost-effective solution for all wall types. Characterised by their durability and strength, they are produced from high quality aggregates with good sound resisting qualities and a highly consistent texture.
If you are looking for something that is comfortable to handle, why not try Easy-lay Midi dense blocks. As the name suggests, these cost-effective blocks are easy to lay either above or below the DPC (damp proof course) and are the perfect solution for all types of construction whether it be commercial, industrial or agricultural.
Our Modulite medium dense lightweight blocks come in both standard and paint grade options. They are ideal where thermal efficiency and manual handling are key considerations. A robust block, they possess excellent noise reducing characteristics and the paint grade version is designed to accept most commercial paint solutions.
Hollow concrete blocks
While hollow blocks are lighter than solid concrete blocks, they are used where strength and reinforcement is a requirement. Hollow blocks contain void areas of usually between 25-50% of the overall volume of the block. The hollow area can be divided into several chambers or cavities. When used for load bearing walls, reinforcement bars, or rebars, are inserted along with cement, filling the voids and providing overall strength to the building. As they are lighter than solid concrete blocks, they are easier to handle and can help to accelerate the construction process.
CCP offer a couple of different options. Our Hollow Dense Blocks are the perfect solution for many different applications including high strength load-bearing walls, structurally reinforced retaining walls, internal walls and fire breaks. We also offer Cellular Dense Blocks which are available in two different sizes and are ideal for internal leaves of cavity walls, party walls, load bearing and partition walls.
Choosing the right concrete block?
There are several questions to ask when choosing concrete blocks. Where will they be used? Are there any aesthetic qualities you need? Are you building a wall, foundation or retaining structure and, if so, what load bearing capacity will be required? For heavy duty applications, blocks with a higher compressive strength will be needed. Size and shape are also a consideration, for example standard blocks, corner blocks or lintels. Are there any climate or environmental factors that need to be taken account of? And of course, what do they cost? Remember our Greenbloc standard blocks perform to the same specification as 100% cement versions and for the same price are the perfect sustainable choice for many customers. Same performance, same cost, lower carbon footprint.