Bolyn constructions company limited have since 1991 been championing the use of Cement stabilized bricks for all type of construction. Ordinarily, majority of patrons of Cement stabilized bricks in Nigeria have only known and believed that these bricks are used for residential accommodation only. It is in this light that we will be considering the use of Cement stabilized bricks for other diverse uses such as the building of Fence walls,Water tanks, Fish ponds, Gutters, Septic tanks, Soak away pits, Foundation of houses etc. Generally speaking the use of Cement stabilized laterite bricks for some specialized construction require some processes e.g. Higher Cement composition, plastering, addition of some agents/chemical etc. We will be considering the various type of structure one by one.
FENCE WALLS AROUND BUILDINGS/PROPERTIES.
Fence walls when constructed are subjected to all type of adverse weather condition some of which are capable of eroding the surfaces over time. Bricks that will be used for the construction of Fence walls must contain at least 10% Cements in its composition, this will make the Fence wall resistant to rain and storm. We are advised to ensure that our Fence walls have Columns called Pillars at intervals such that the expansion and contraction occurring in them are regulated. The provision of Coping called Fence wall cap protect the head course against direct weathering by rain. Fence walls built with Cement stabilized bricks are usually beautiful, unique and cost effective as they do not need plastering and painting.
WATER TANKS [PARTIALLY UNDERGROUND & ABOVE THE GROUND TANKS].
We do not advise the use of Cement Stabilized bricks for the building of any under ground structure. We can only advise the use of Cement stabilized bricks for the followings- Partially underground tanks, On the ground tanks and Over head water tanks. Bricks for such structures will be best if they are made with a higher percentage of Cement say a minimum of 10%. In addition, it is recommended that the internal of such tanks be plastered with a high percentage of Cement to sand, this combination can also be mixed with some water proof agent or tiled with Ceramic tiles. The structural stability is guaranteed when all the other building rules and regulations are followed meticulously.
FISH POND CONSTRUCTION.
Some of our customers have used the Cement stabilized bricks in the construction of “Above The Ground Fish ponds”. A Pond ought to have a foundation and concrete floor. The pond is a water retaining structure that must be built using the Cement stabilized bricks that are properly made and cured. Please note that a higher percentage of Cement must be used for such Bricks that are to be used for Fish pond construction. These Cement stabilized bricks can be used to form pillars called columns at the needed intervals within the Pond construction. It is mandatory to plaster the internal of the Ponds with a high grade Cement to sharp and soft sand mixture. The addition of a water proofing agent can be of added advantage when used.
STREET GUTTER CONSTRUCTION IN LOW DENSITY SUBURBS.
Most Gutters in some neighborhood have been made with Hollow sandcrete blocks [230mm wide], when this is the case, it is required that the holes in the blocks be filled with concrete mixture. Speaking from experience, when this writer was confronted with similar project more than 10 years ago, he decided to experiment with Cement stabilized bricks for the flooring and walling of the Gutter in his house. It turned out to be a success, the internal walls of the Gutter after construction with the Cement stabilized bricks was plastered. The use of this brick technology resulted into a saving of several thousands of naira that would have been used for concreting the internal of the sandcrete blocks.
SEPTIC TANKS AND SOAK AWAY PIT.
Since Septic tanks is a below the ground structure, the use of Cement stabilized bricks is not recommended. We cannot guarantee the structural stability or the cost effectiveness [if] other materials are combined with it to solve the noted problems. However, using same for a Soak away pit can be recommended, in this case, we must continue to use a higher percentage of Cement that must not be lower than 10% to the Laterite soil.
FOUNDATION OF HOUSES/BUILDINGS.
Kindly avoid the use of Cement stabilized Laterite soil bricks for the foundation of major houses and structures because the bricks will be surrounded in the foundation by Laterite soil, both of which exhibit the same characteristic, greedy for water. The only instance or situation that it can be permitted to use Cement stabilized bricks in the foundation of any structure is when the building is to be built on rocks or hills or such places where the rain water cannot stay in the foundation.
Overall, we have seen that in the materials making up the Cement stabilized bricks, the Laterite soil is very easy and cheap to source. Putting these bricks in to diverse usage in the construction of structures will assist in the reduction of cost of construction but we urge users14
to seek qualified advise and guidance for all our special needs.