Main Index

Siding and Cladding Problems

Brick Veneer

Problem: Cracking of brick veneer.

Cracking of brick and mortar can provide a path for water penetration and can in severe cases, result in a safety problem. Cracking of brick veneer often occurs where there is differential settlement in the foundation.

Cause: Inability of the cladding system to accommodate differential movement.


  • Any differential movement in the foundation will be transferred through to the brick veneer, resulting in cracking as shown in Figure 47. Provide vertical control joints between the brick veneer and other elements of the cladding systems to allow for differential movement. Vertical movement joints should also be provided where the foundation elements change, as they might at the connecting edge of an unheated garage foundations, for example.

Vertical Movement Joint

Figure 47 - Vertical Movement Of Brick Veneer Wall Joint.