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  • Cost to Build a Garden Brick Wall

    Want to know how much a brick wall costs to build? In this article we look at garden wall prices of different heights, lengths and thicknesses, as well as the labour cost of hiring a bricklayer to build the wall.

    Average Cost to Build a Garden Brick Wall:

    Depending on the complexity of the job, it usually takes: 3 days

    £1,000

    How Much to Build a Brick Wall?

    Several factors affect how much it will cost to build a brick wall in your garden. The main two factors are the size of the wall and the type of bricks you choose.

    A small 5m x 1.2m wall can cost as little as £530 if it is made out of machine-made bricks. The same size wall can cost as much as £1,100 if made from handmade or reclaimed bricks.

    brickwall1

    You can choose to have a thicker wall made. Walls with two skins of bricks will cost twice as much as the same size wall with a single skin of bricks.

    On average you can expect to pay around £70 - £120 per m2 of garden brick wall.

    Garden Wall Prices

    The following gives you some idea of the total cost for different sizes of wall. There will be some variance based on where you live and the type of team you hire.

    Size

    For comparison these are the costs for different sizes of wall all made with machine made bricks

    Wall Size Number of Skins of Brick Average Cost
    5m x 1.2m 1 £530 - £744
    5m x 1.2m 2 £840 - £1188
    10m x 1.2m 1 £840 - £1188
    10m x 1.2m 2 £1,240 - £1,776
    5m x 2m 2 £810 - £1,140
    10m x 2m 2 £1,400 - £1,980

    Brick

    For comparison, these are the costs for building the same size wall in different bricks. This is for a 5m x 1.2m single skin wall.

    Type of Brick Average Cost
    Machine Made £530 - £744
    Hand Made £656 - £1,176
    Reclaimed £614 - £1,140

    Labour Costs and Timescales

    Depending on who you hire, you might be quoted for the wall or for the time of the team.

    Size of Wall

    This will give you an idea of the labour costs and timeframes for different sizes of garden wall

    Wall Size Number of skins of brick Timescale Average cost
    5m x 1.2m 1 2 days £440 - £600
    5m x 1.2m 2 3 days £660 - £900
    10m x 1.2m 1 3 days £660 - £900
    10m x 1.2m 2 4 days £880 - £1,200
    5m x 2m 2 3 days £660 - £900
    10m x 2m 2 5 days £1,100 - £1,500

    Labour Cost

    This will give you an idea of the daily rates for the different workers that might be on site.

    Worker Average Daily Rate
    Brick Layer £150 - £200
    Labourer £70 - £100

    Supply Only Costs

    There are a few factors to consider when you are working out the costs of the materials for your wall.

    Bricks

    Type of Brick Cost per brick Cost per thousand bricks Cost per m2
    Machine Made 56p – 76p £250 - £400 £15 - £24
    Hand made 80p - £1.50 £600 - £1,600 £36 - £96
    Reclaimed 75p - £2.50 £480 - £1,500 £29 - £90

    Other materials

    When you are building a wall, you will need to buy the ingredients for the mortar and the foundations as well. The following gives you an idea of the costs of these required to build a 5m by 1.2m double skin garden wall.

    Material Average Cost
    Sand £115 - £125
    Cement £85 - £95
    Plasticiser £5 - £10
    Capping Stones/Bricks £40 - £50

    Additional Costs

    Security Light

    If you are building a brick wall to improve the security of your home, then you might want to consider installing a security light as well. The average cost to install a security light is £150.

    Garden Waste Removal

    Garden waste removal can be a good first step in preparing your garden for any work, like building a garden wall. It could save you from paying the higher rate of the bricklayers to clear the space they need. The average cost for clearing a garden is £200.

    Garden Wall Gate

    brickwall3

    If you need a gate in your wall, you will need to factor in the cost to buy and fit the gate. The gate will cost between £80 - £150. It will cost an extra £150 - £200 to hire someone to install it.

    Lay New Turf

    Once you have your garden wall built, you may want to consider laying garden turf. This is a wonderful finishing touch to a garden that can transform the space. It costs on average £1,000.

    Build a Garden Shed

    While you are laying the foundations for your wall, it might be a good time to also lay them for a new shed. Building garden shed costs on average £700.

    Hiring a Gardener

    If you are putting money into building a new wall in your garden, then this might be the time to invest in a garden to maintain your garden as well. Maintenance gardener costs are on average, £200 per visit.

    Cost Factors of Building a Garden Brick Wall

    There are a few main factors that can affect the cost of brick walls. So, you should consider these when you are working out your budget.

    Size of Wall

    The size of the wall is going to have a big impact on the cost. You will need to pay for the bricks to build the wall as well as the time it takes to build it. If you need to fix your budget, you could limit the height of the wall as this will reduce the cost.

    Type of Bricks

    If you choose to use reclaimed bricks, then it will increase the cost of the project. New modern bricks are cheaper and easier to get hold of.

    brickwall4

    Extensive Groundwork

    If the ground in which your foundations need to be laid is hard to dig. For example, there are a lot of rocks or tree roots. Then the cost will increase. This is because you are paying for your worker's time.

    Thickness

    Most garden walls will be ½ brick thickness or one brick thickness. This is the difference between having a single layer of bricks and two layers of bricks. Obviously having two skins of brick will cost twice as much.

    Location

    If the wall is located in a hard to reach area, then expect to pay a premium for getting the bricks to the site.

    What's Involved in Building a Garden Brick Wall?

    If you hire someone to build a brick wall in your garden, there will be three main stages of the process. If you want to reduce the cost of the brick wall, you can do some of the first stage yourself, so you are paying for less labour.

    Stage 1

    The first part of the job is preparation. This means clearing the space for the wall and marking out guidelines to ensure the wall is built straight. If there is an old fence in the way, this will need to be removed, and the old posts dug up.

    A trench will be dug for the garden wall foundations. Concrete will be laid in the trench as a base for the wall.

    brickwall5

    Stage 2

    The wall is built. This will involve mixing up mortar in batches and laying bricks. The mortar is only good for two hours, so it has to be remade. A lot of bricklayers have a labourer with them to do this so they can work quicker.

    Stage 3

    Once the wall is built, all that's left to do is clean up and remove and waste.

    Can I Build a Garden Brick Wall Myself?

    Building a brick wall is not an overly complicated process. There are some tricky parts. The more you do it, the better the final result will be. Building a brick garden wall is a good opportunity to learn the skill. Just don't expect to be able to do the work as fast as a professional. A professional bricklayer can lay around 600 bricks in a day. You will not be able to do anywhere near this.

    Choosing to go the DIY route will save you the cost to lay brick. But you will need to add in the cost of the equipment you will need.

    Stage 1

    Even if you don't want to build the whole wall yourself, you can save some money by preparing the area. This will need to be done; whoever builds the wall and doesn't require any skill. You should clear the site of any bushes weeds or debris. This is also the time to settle on which brick garden wall ideas you want to use and what your final result will look like.

    Stage 2

    The next step is to prepare the garden wall foundations. You will need to dig a trench that runs the length the wall will. It should be between 35cm and 50cm deep depending on the height of your wall. Then fill the trench with at least 15cm – 20cm of concrete. You could dig the trench and then leave the rest for a professional if you want to cut costs but aren't too confident at DIY.

    brickwall2

    Stage 3

    Mix the mortar. Mortar for a brick wall should be a ratio of 1:5 of cement to sand. You should add some plasticiser to the sand as well. You might want to use a cement mixer for this. Only makeup as much as you will use in the next two hours.

    Stage 4

    Lay the bricks. Using a guideline, lay a layer of mortar. Place a brick onto the mortar and tap it down into position. Cut off any excess mortar with a trowel. Continue to add bricks building up your wall. You should start from the corners and work your way up and across.

    Stage 5

    Finish the wall. The wall should be finished with capping bricks. These will help the wall to shed rainwater and resist the weather better.

    What Are Bricks Made Of?

    Bricks are made of clay. They are often made from a type of clay called shale. This is clay that has been subjected to high pressure to form slates. The slate is allowed to sit in the quarry for two years to make it soft enough to be worked with. Once taken to the factory the shale is ground into dust.

    The powder is then mixed with water to make a thick paste. This paste is then extruded into a long rectangular ‘slug’. If the brick is to be coloured, it is coated with a layer of sand before it is fired. The surface of the brick is textured before it is cut to size.

    The bricks are then stacked and stored in a dryer to get rid of the extra moisture in the bricks. The bricks are then fired in a kiln at 1040oC. After a day and a half in the kiln, the bricks are ready.

    Types of a Brick for a Garden Brick Wall

    Machine Made Brick Wall Cost

    There are a few different ways to make bricks. The different methods produce different final looks. For a smoother finish, you should choose an extruded or wire-cut brick. For a brick with some texture, you should choose either soft mud bricks or water struck bricks. The average cost of bricks is £250 - £400 per thousand bricks.

    Pros

    ✔ Cheap brick for garden wall

    ✔ Consistent look

    ✔ High quality

    Cons

    ✖ Come in standard sizes only

    Handmade Brick Wall Cost

    These bricks are a little more varied in their appearance. They give a more traditional final look to the wall.

    brickwall6

    Because they are made by hand, you can get them made in a wider range of sizes and shapes to suit your project. The average price of bricks is £600 - £1600 per thousand bricks.

    Pros

    ✔ Traditional appearance

    ✔ Variety in sizing

    ✔ High quality

    Cons

    ✖ High Cost

    Reclaimed Brick Wall Cost

    Reclaimed bricks can be found from reclamation yards. They are bricks rescued from buildings that have been pulled down. When buying these bricks, you should buy more than you need as you are likely to have a higher rate of wastage than with new bricks. The average cost of these bricks is £480 - £1,500 per thousand bricks.

    Pros

    ✔ Bricks already weathered, so the appearance won't change over time

    ✔ Can get bricks to match your home or local area

    Cons

    ✖ High rate of wastage

    ✖ Limited stock

    How Many Bricks Do I Need?

    Calculating the number of bricks, you need is quite straightforward, if you are using standard-sized bricks. You calculate the number of m2 of brick you need. So, the length of the wall x the height of the wall. Then multiply this number by 60. This gives you the number of bricks for a half-brick thickness wall. For a full brick thickness wall, you'll just need to double the number.

    Finally, you add 10% for wastage. This allows for some bricks to be broken or damaged. It is better to have a few bricks left over then need to buy more in small numbers. This works out as the cheaper option.

    For example, you want the build a 2m high wall that is 10m long. The m2 of brick is 20m2. So, you need 1,200 bricks. Then add 120 for wastage, and you should buy a total of 1,320 bricks to build a wall that is 2m x 10m.

    Brick Standards

    Brick standards are the expectations that all bricks should meet before they are sued in construction. It ensures that any construction made from these bricks will be safe and able to carry out its intended purpose. These standards are laid out by NHBC (National House Building Council) and are supported by the BDA (Brick Development Association). These two associations basically ensure that all bricks bought in the UK are strong and reliable.

    The Standards

    There are two essential requirements for brick standards. These apply to garden bricks as well.

    Firstly, the bricks should be able to support their intended loads. This means they should have a minimum strength of 9N/mm2.

    Secondly, the bricks should have appropriate resistance to freeze-thaw cycles and sulfate attack. This basically means that bricks that will be exposed to the elements should be able to tolerate them.

    Testing

    Several tests are carried out on batches of bricks to ensure that they meet the standards.

    Absorption

    Bricks are left submerged in water. Their weight after is compared to their weight before. The brick should increase by no more than 10% in weight to pass.

    Compressive Strength

    Bricks are crushed. The force applied before they begin to break is their strength. This should be more than 9N/mm2.

    Hardness

    Bricks should be hard. They should be able to resist scratching by sharp tools. They should also be able to remain solid when struck against each other.

    Homogeneity

    A brick from the batch will be broken. The inside should be even in colour and texture. There should be no lumps.

    Efflorescence Test

    High-quality bricks should not contain any soluble salts. If they are present, they can cause the brick to decay and form a dusty white coating. To test for the presence of soluble salts, the brick is placed in water for 24 hours then allowed to dry. If there are no white or grey deposits on the surface of the brick, it is good to use.

    What Are the Benefits of a Garden Brick Wall?

    Here are some benefits of building a brick garden wall:

    Privacy

    Brick walls are the ultimate option when it comes to privacy. There is no way to see through like you can with some fence panels. A tall brick wall is also a clear request for privacy. It is more than just a boundary marker.

    Sound Barrier

    While a brick wall will not block all sound from the surrounding area, it will do a lot to mute the sound. It can be a great addition if you live near a main road.

    Provide a Wind Break

    A good quality wall will stop the wind from blowing through your garden. This can make your garden more sheltered and a nicer place to be.

    Security

    A high solid wall is a good deterrent to thieves. It provides privacy and prevents potential thieves from looking for ways into your home.

    Hardwearing

    A brick wall is not going to blow over. You don’t have to worry about rot or animals damaging it. A brick wall will last much longer than any of the alternatives.

    brickwall7

    Aesthetics

    Brick walls are a very classic look in the UK. They are clean and tidy and are an aesthetically appealing way to make boundaries.

    Children/Pet Safety

    A brick wall is an effective barrier. It is sturdy enough that you don't have to worry about children or pets finding their way through it. If you have a brick wall surrounding your garden, as long as it is high enough, you can be confident that there will be no escapes.

    Planning Permission for a Garden Brick Wall

    Planning permission is not required for building a garden wall in most cases. The only exceptions are

    • If the wall will be over 2m high
    • If the wall will be over 1m high and next to a footpath

    Building Regulations for a Garden Brick Wall

    Building regulations do not apply for garden walls. You do not need to get the wall inspected. However, any walls should be structurally sound. To aid with this, there are recommended maximum heights for garden walls. These are based on where you live in the UK and the thickness of the wall. These recommended heights vary between 2400mm and 375mm. It is worth checking the government's planning portal to see which heights apply to you before you start work.

    Alternatives to Garden Brick Wall

    A brick wall can be a good choice if you are using it to hold earth; however, in many situations, it is not the only choice. Here are some alternatives to consider.

    Garden Fence

    Garden fences can be a more versatile option if there is no need for structural integrity. They can be more easily and cheaply built higher and come in a range of designs. The average cost for a 10m fence is £550 - £1000 depending on the height of the fence.

    Pros

    ✔ Can be painted

    ✔ Range of designs

    ✔ No planning permission for up to 2m high

    Cons

    ✖ Require maintenance

    ✖ Limited Lifespan

    Hedge/Bush Divider

    Hedges can provide a natural barrier and method to divide a space into sections. They look appealing and provide homes for wildlife. The average cost of a hedge is £150 per metre for a full-grown hedge and £15 - £70 per metre for young rooted hedge sections that will grow in.

    Pros

    ✔ Cheap option

    ✔ Aesthetically appealing

    ✔ Wildlife-friendly

    Cons

    ✖ Low security

    ✖ Require maintenance

    ✖ Takes time to grow in

    Natural Stone Wall

    These are walls built using shaped natural stone ‘bricks’. You can choose from a range of materials such as sandstone or traditional tumbled stone walling. The average cost is £150 - £300 per m2.

    Pros

    ✔ Striking look

    ✔ More colour options

    Cons

    ✖ High cost

    Concrete Wall

    You can use concrete blocks and build them like a traditional wall. These will cost around £75 - £85 per m2

    Pros

    ✔ Durable

    ✔ Can be used as a retaining wall

    Cons

    ✖ Not aesthetically pleasing

    Dry Stone Wall

    A drystone wall is built using no mortar. It is a very eye-catching and rustic look. The average cost for this sort of wall is £100 -£150 per m2.

    Pros

    ✔ Attractive Finish

    Cons

    ✖ Requires maintenance

    How to Hang a Gate on Brick Wall

    Brick walls look lovely but adding a gate can be a challenge. To do so, you need to have the correct equipment. You need to have a masonry drill bit for a hammer drill as well as masonry screws.

    brickwall8

    How to Hang a Gate

    Hold the gate in position and mark the position of the mounting holes on the hinges. Make sure that these hols are fully centred on brick and not on the mortar. Put the gate aside and drill 2-inch holes into the marked positions. Return the gate to position and attach it to the wall using masonry screws.

    Close the gate and position the latch side of the gate. Again, make sure that the mounting holes are centred on brick, not mortar. Mark the position, drill and screw in place as for the gate.

    The gate and fixings should cost £80 - £150, depending on style and size.

    Hiring Someone

    If you don’t have the equipment to hand, then it might be a good idea to hire someone to hang the gate for you. You can expect to pay £150 - £200 depending on where you live.

    Removing a Garden Brick Wall

    Removing a brick wall can open up your garden. If you replace your front garden wall with a fence, it can either provide more privacy, if you choose a tall fence, or it can make the front of your house seem larger by using a picket fence.

    How to Remove A Brick Wall

    Removing a brick wall is hard work and can be dangerous if not done carefully. You should make sure to have appropriate safety gear such as goggles and ear defenders.

    You start by using a concrete blade on a power saw to make cuts into the mortar of the wall. They should be about 2.5cm deep at 30cm intervals along the wall.

    brickwall9

    Then swing a sledgehammer to break the wall. You want to hit at the point you cut. Make sure there is no one near you during this step. Continue to hit the wall until it begins to break apart. You can use a hammer and chisel to work on parts of the wall that hare hard to hit with a sledgehammer.

    You can then remove the brick.

    Cost to Hire Someone

    Hiring someone to help remove a brick wall is a good idea if you are not up to the physically demanding job. For a simple brick wall in your garden, you can expect to pay £200 - £250 to have someone take it down.

    Additional Costs

    If the brick wall has a footing that needs to be removed, then the costs will be much higher. The footing will have to be removed using a jackhammer. The concrete will then need to be disposed of, which will have a cost depending on your local council. To hire a jackhammer and dispose of the concrete yourself could cost £150 - £200. It takes a lot of time. To hire someone to do this work could cost over £1,000.

    Selling the Bricks

    If the bricks are still in good condition after the wall comes down, it is possible to sell them. Especially if they are an unusual colour or pattern. You may be able to sell them to a local reclamation yard. Otherwise, you can sell them privately through an advert or a site like eBay. It can take a while to find a buyer, but there will be one out there.

    Hiring a Garden Brick Wall Builder Checklist

    When you are hiring someone to build a wall, you are usually hiring at last one bricklayer and one labourer to help them get the job done more quickly. So, when you ask for a quote, make sure it includes all the costs and labour. When you are hiring someone to build your garden wall here are a few things to look for

    • Do they have any qualifications? Some bricklayers will have learnt their skill on job sites or through an apprenticeship. Otherwise, they may have completed a city and guilds qualification or a construction qualification. Any of these are a good sign that they will know what they are doing.
    • Are they a member of the federation of master builders or other trade body? These are professional associations that builder and tradesmen can be associated with. If they are it gives you some extra protection
    • Do they have insurance? If they are going to be working on your property, you should make sure they have public liability insurance in place.
    • See examples of their work. If possible, ask to see examples of walls they have built-in gardens before, that way you know what quality to expect.

    FAQs

    What are engineering bricks?
    Engineering bricks are the most expensive sort of brick. They are strong, durable and frost resistant. They are usually reserved for use underground.
    How long is a brick?
    A standard brick is 215mm by 102.5mm in size.
    How much does a brick cost?
    The cost of a brick varies. It depends on the sort of brick you are looking at. The price of bricks starts at around 50p per brick and can rise as high as £1.50. These prices usually come down when you buy them in large volumes. Usually, prices are quoted per thousand bricks.
    How many bricks per m2 are needed for building a wall?
    If the bricks are standard sized, you need 60 bricks for every m2 when you are building a brick wall.
    Why are bricks the size they are?
    The standard size for bricks is based on a size that is easy to hold and manoeuvre with one hand. It is also why using large garden wall bricks can make a job much more expensive.

    Sources

    https://www.brick.org.uk/admin/resources/s-free-standing-walls.pdf
    http://www.gobrick.com/docs/default-source/read-research-documents/technicalnotes/29a-brick-in-landscape-architecture---garden-walls.pdf?sfvrsn=0
    https://www.self-build.co.uk/cost-guide-walls-and-insulation/
    https://www.wickes.co.uk/Products/Building-Materials/Bricks,-Blocks+Lintels/c/1000177
    https://www.hadley-reclaimed.co.uk/reclaimed-bricks/
    https://www.planningportal.co.uk/info/200130/common_projects/20/fences_gates_and_garden_walls/2
    https://www.planningni.gov.uk/index/.../advice_home_fences.htm
    http://nhbccampaigns.co.uk/landingpages/techzone/previous_versions/2011/Part6/section1/materials.htm

    Last updated by MyJobQuote on 23rd September 2020.

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