Updated July 6th, 2020
- What is soaking?
- Why should we soak bricks?
- How long should bricks be soaked?
- How to soak bricks?
What is soaking?
Why should we soak bricks?
Bricks are dry and they absorb too much water. If we don’t soak bricks it will absorb water from cement-mortar. As a result, the mortar will be weak and fail to make bonds between bricks due to lack of enough water for the hydraulic reaction of cement in mortar. Ultimately it’ll weaken the masonry wall. So it’s very essential to soak bricks properly.
Another purpose of brick soaking is to bring out salt and any other harmful chemicals from the bricks.
How long should bricks be soaked?
It is a common tendency to make bricks wetted by spraying water. That is harmful to quality brickwork. Bricks should be completely saturated with water. It should be soaked until it doesn’t absorb a single drop of water. Normally it takes 8 to 12 hours to completely saturated.
How to soak bricks?
In multi-story buildings, it is not possible to soak bricks on a floor and carry them to other floors. So we make separate water tanks on each floor.
Making temporary soaking tank –
- Use a plastic drum initially for soaking bricks till the soaking tank is ready.
- Soak bricks in a plastic drum for 12 hours and take out the bricks from drum one hour before starting brick masonry work.
- With these soaked bricks make wall layout on the floor as shown in architectural drawing. Make necessary changes as per the client’s/owner’s decision and finalize the layout.
- The size of the water tank depends on how many masons will work for a day or how many bricks will be needed for a day. Depending on the size of the water tank choose a room or toilet to make a soaking tank.
- Make a wall around your chosen room up to 2½ feet or 3 feet high. Don’t forget to keep the door open for the room during making a masonry wall.
- After making the room’s wall, make a wall for door opening of the same height. But don’t make the masonry bond between the wall of the door opening and the rest of the wall. So that you can break the door opening wall later.
- The next day, make plaster with net cement finishing on the inner wall surface of the soaking tank. The purpose of net cement finishing is to make the water tank leakage proof.
- During making the wall around the water tank put a 2″ diameter PVC pipe at bottom of wall. So that, dirty water after soaking brick can be discharged through this pipe.
- Put the required quantity of bricks for day’s work into water tank previous day and take out from the water tank an hour before starting brickwork to sweep out the excess water from bricks.
Do you soak bricks in your construction project? What technique do you apply for that? Please share in the comments below…