Air bricks are a crucial component of homes built pre-1940 and many others with suspended floors. They provide essential ventilation to the sub-floor void, but they also pose potential risks, especially during heavy rainfall and flooding. In this article, we will explore the importance of air bricks, their maintenance, and the benefits of using modern solutions like the Buffalo Anti Flood Air Brick and Buffalo Eco Air Brick.

Does My Home Have Air Bricks?

Many older homes with suspended floors have air bricks. To check if your property has air bricks, walk around the perimeter and look for small, brick-like structures near the ground. If you find them, you can enhance their protection against floods by installing Buffalo Anti Flood Air Bricks or Buffalo Eco Air Bricks. These can also be stacked to create larger vents. Additionally, you can verify if your home has suspended floors by checking your EPC certificate.

Why Can Water Enter the Property via Air Bricks, and Where Should Air Bricks Be Positioned?

The National House Building Council recommends positioning air bricks at least 75mm above the ground. They can be located either above or below the damp course level, but it’s advisable to have them on all sides of the property. However, due to their relatively low position, air bricks are susceptible to water ingress during heavy rainfall and flooding. If your property is at risk of flooding, consider using air brick flood protection measures.

Can Rainwater Get in Through Air Bricks?

Under normal conditions, rainwater should not enter your property via air bricks. However, during severe weather events that cause flooding near your property, water may find its way into the sub-floor void through the air bricks. To safeguard against this, consider using anti-flood air bricks.

Are Plastic Air Bricks Better Than Traditional Ones?

Traditional air bricks were made of clay or cast iron, often with wide holes that allowed ventilation but also permitted pests and rodents to enter. Modern air bricks are typically made from plastic, which provides durability and better airflow. The Buffalo Anti Flood Air Brick, constructed from ABS, offers even greater durability and is 100% recyclable.

When Can I Block Up an Air Brick?

If your property is at risk of flooding, you can temporarily use a Buffalo Air Brick Flood Cover to prevent water from entering. Once the flood risk has subsided, you should remove the cover. Alternatively, a more permanent solution is to install a Buffalo Anti Flood Air Brick, which offers passive flood protection.

Should You Close Air Vents in Winter?

The UK government recommends keeping air bricks and trickle vents open and unblocked, even during winter, to ensure sufficient ventilation in the sub-floor void. Closing them can lead to damp and condensation issues.

Can You Put a Cowl Over an Air Brick?

Yes, air brick cowls can be used to prevent draughts and wind blasts. However, they may require drilling into the wall and can be difficult to access for maintenance. The Buffalo Eco Air Brick offers an alternative solution, as it requires no additional parts and is easily maintained.

The Importance of Eco Air Bricks

With rising energy costs and a focus on reducing carbon footprints, eco air bricks are becoming increasingly popular. The Buffalo Eco Air Brick not only helps save energy by reducing heat loss but also offers easy installation and maintenance without requiring professional assistance.

Can the Buffalo Eco Air Brick Be Stacked?

For properties with double or triple air brick vents, the Buffalo Eco Air Brick is designed to be easily stacked to create a larger vent. The ribs on the air brick ensure stability and prevent sliding.

Conclusion: Air bricks play a vital role in ventilating the sub-floor void of older homes, but they can also pose challenges during extreme weather conditions. By considering modern solutions like the Buffalo Anti Flood Air Brick and Buffalo Eco Air Brick, homeowners can enhance flood protection and improve energy efficiency without compromising ventilation. Proper maintenance and proactive measures can ensure air bricks continue to function effectively throughout the year.