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Masonry

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The use of materials such as brick and stone can increase the thermal mass of a building, giving increased comfort in the heat of summer and the cold of winter, and can be ideal for passive solar applications.
Brick typically will not require painting and so can provide a structure with reduced life-cycle costs, although sealing appropriately will reduce potential spalling due to frost damage. Non-decorative concrete block generally is painted or stuccoed if exposed. The appearance, especially when well crafted, can impart an impression of solidity and permanence. Masonry is very heat resistant and thus provides good fire protection. Masonry walls are more resistant to projectiles, such as debris from hurricanes or tornadoes than walls of wood or other softer, less dense materials. Unreinforced Masonry structures built in compression (preferably with lime mortar) can have a useful life of more than 500 years as compared to 30 to 100 for structures of steel or reinforced concrete.


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