🕑 Reading time: 1 minuteThickness of masonry walls in a building is designed based on loads and other factors. Various requirements for suitable thickness of masonry walls are discussed.
Fig.1: Masonry Wall and Masonry Structure
- Requirement for Thickness of Masonry Walls in Buildings
- Thickness Requirements for Load Bearing Masonry Wall
- Thickness Requirements of Rubble Stone Walls
- Thickness of Non-Load Bearing Masonry Walls
Requirement for Thickness of Masonry Walls in BuildingsThere are various requirements regarding the thickness of masonry walls that needs to be considered at the design stage. For example, it is recommended to use constant masonry wall thickness between lateral supports. The lateral support for masonry is provided by cross walls, pilasters, and structural frame members as shown in Figure-2.
Fig.2: Lateral Support of Masonry WallRegarding variation of masonry in vertical direction, the distance between floors, structural frames and roofs should be considered when the thickness of masonry wall is varied. Masonry wall thickness changes between floor and roof and between different floors is usually enforced to reach thermal, sound and fire requirements.
Fig.3: Vertical support of masonry wall considered for making changes in masonry thicknessIf masonry wall thickness is changed, it is recommended to extend the thicker wall to the lower support level. Building code requirements and specifications for masonry structure (ACI 530-11) states that, when the thickness of masonry wall constructed from hollow masonry units is changed, then it would be required to provide a layer or several layer of solid masonry units or completely grouted hollow masonry units between thicker masonry wall and the thinner masonry wall. The aim of providing solid masonry course between thicker and thinner masonry wall is to properly transfer loads from the above wall (thin wall) to the wall below (thick wall). There are several limitations and restrictions which should be considered for masonry walls except in the case where the walls are designed for reinforcements based on the engineering principles. The limitation associated with masonry thickness for different masonry walls types are discussed below.