Ever wondered if you could clad over brick, or how to do it? To help, we spoke with Kye Furlong from Saltbox Building Co. and Dwain Labuschewski from Hezzelic Homes to answer your burning questions about all things cladding over brick.
Q: DO I NEED TO CHANGE OR UPDATE EXISTING WINDOWS/DOOR/OPENINGS IF I CLAD OVER A BRICK HOUSE?
Kye: “It is better to change the windows and doors when you clad over brickwork. However, there are ways to conceal the gap between the old window and the new cladding if there are budget constraints for new windows. I would also recommend that you talk to your builder about the options best suited to your home.”
Q: WHAT ARE SOME OF THE ADVANTAGES OF CLADDING OVER BRICK?
Dwain: “Cladding over brick offers a simple yet highly effective way to create a new look for the home, and it’s particularly great for refreshing the tired facade of older houses. It also provides further insulation qualities for the home. Another big advantage of cladding over a brick veneer wall is that it will help you save money by avoiding the costs of demolition work as well as allowing for a much quicker renovation time.”
Q: HOW TO FINISH OFF CLADDING AGAINST BRICK?
Kye: “It is best to run a batten system directly over the brickwork and then fix the cladding to the batten. Essentially this creates a thermal break between the cladding, which helps to cut down on the cost of air conditioning during the summer and heating during the winter. Additionally, fixing cladding into a batten is a much simpler process than fixing into brickwork. It also makes it very easy to get the cladding perfectly straight, level and plumb evenly over brickwork that curves and bends.”
Q: WHAT DO I NEED TO DO TO BEST PREPARE TO CLAD AGAINST BRICK?
Kye: “The most important thing to do is to knock off any protruding bricks or mortar. Get the surface of the brickwork as flat as possible before you start to batten, as this will help save hours of time straightening battens.”
Dwain: “Batten with steel or timber, which would be mechanically fixed into the brickwork. Also, install a weatherproof sarking like the HardieWrap™ weather barrier before you start cladding for additional protection against weather conditions and to manage moisture build-up.”
TOP TIPS TO THINK ABOUT BEFORE CLADDING OVER BRICK
- Plan your window and door reveals beforehand to ensure that your cladding finishes as neatly as possible into window and door frames, or in line with window openings.
- Consider your counter batten options. Cladding is not drilled directly into existing walls but affixed onto a batten system that is built onto existing walls. Scyon™ Cavity™ trim by James Hardie™ is a great batten option that can go thinner than timber, ensuring the elevation isn’t pushed out too far.
- During the initial stages of planning, consider how you will work around services such as drain pipes, air-conditioning units, water pipes, electrical boxes, reticulation controls and down pipes. While there is the option to use thicker battens to clad over these features, keep in mind that this will bring the wall out to that extra distance.