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What is the function of mortar in brick walls?

A typical brick wall structure normally contains the following components:
(i) a coping on top of the brick wall to protect it from weather;

(ii) a firm foundation to support the loads on the brick wall; and

(iii) a damp course near the base of the brick wall to avoid the occurrence of rising damp from the ground.


Bricks are bedded on mortar which serves the following purposes:
(i) bond the bricks as a single unit to help resist lateral loads;

(ii) render the brick wall weatherproof and waterproof; and

(iii) provide even beds to enhance uniform distribution of loads.


This question is taken from book named – A Self Learning Manual – Mastering Different Fields of Civil Engineering Works (VC-Q-A-Method) by Vincent T. H. CHU.

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Kanwarjot Singh

Kanwarjot Singh is the founder of Civil Engineering Portal, a leading civil engineering website which has been awarded as the best online publication by CIDC. He did his BE civil from Thapar University, Patiala and has been working on this website with his team of Civil Engineers.

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2 comments on "What is the function of mortar in brick walls?"

manish das says:

nice answer… 🙂 m satisfied

Liton biswas says:

Which Type of mortar should be used for interior brick wall and exterior brick wall? I know there are 5 types of mortar as specified in ASTM. But which types is economical by not compromising quality of bond?

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