How to Grout Interior Brick Veneer
Follow these steps to complete the installation of interior brick veneer by applying mortar to the brick joints.
To create the half bricks for the running bond corners, cut the thin brick in half using a tile cutter or diamond blade grinder.
Make design decisions before you begin, because it may require cuts that should be spaced out in the wall design. In this project, we used the brick corners along the edges and top of the stonework, with a soldier course created from the flats along the bottom and stone sills (Image 1).
The stone sills were created from a piece of thin veneer stone (Image 2). To re-create this sill look – depending on the depth of your sill – you can use thin veneer, wood, or a piece of bluestone or limestone, depending upon what's available at your local quarry.
In this project, we used a running bond pattern, which starts at the corners by laying a full brick, following with a half brick, then a full brick, then a half brick and so on (Image 1). The goal of the traditional running bond pattern is to have each row break the joints of the row beneath it at the halfway mark. In full brick work, this is done for support; for brick veneer, it provides visual interest and re-creates the look of full brick. Attach the brick with the cut side facing the inside of your brick work; this hides the cuts and creates the illusion that the brick veneer is full brick (Image 2).
Once you have some of your brick work established, mark a straight line across the wall using a straight edge and a level. Build a continuous row across the length of the wall to act as a guideline for setting brick and keeping your running bond (Image 3). If you have multiple people working on this project they can then start from opposite ends of the wall and work together without worrying that their running bonds won’t match up.
Begin at the bottom and working up toward the ceiling, apply a bead of construction adhesive designed specifically for brick veneer to the back of the brick (Image 4). Keep the adhesive about a quarter of an inch from the edge of the brick. Apply the brick to the wall with enough pressure for the brick to adhere and hold it until the brick doesn’t move – it shouldn’t be more than a few seconds.
The construction adhesive should be adjustable for about 15-20 minutes, during which time you can make any necessary adjustments to the brick placement and joint size. If you want your joint size to be exact, you can use tile jointers, but slight variances in joint width helps to create the illusion of an old brick wall.
Step back every now and then to check your work. If your wall is long, the row might begin to sway or the joint sizes to change. The joints and line don’t have to be perfect, but there should be some consistency. Once all the bricks have been attached, you're ready for grouting.
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