Wall ties, sometimes known as brick ties, are used in the construction of buildings to bind different layers of a wall together. They are typically made of metal and are embedded into the mortar between bricks or concrete blocks of a cavity wall, preventing it from bowing or collapsing inward. This connection is crucial for stabilising the wall structure, ensuring that both sides of the wall behave as a single unit. Without wall ties, the two sides of the wall could shift independently in response to loads or environmental factors, leading to structural instability or even failure.

The Key Functions of Wall Ties

Structural Stability

Wall ties provide lateral stability to walls, especially important in areas with high winds or ground movement. By linking the inner and outer walls (commonly referred to as leaves), they transfer loads and stresses, helping the wall stand firm against external pressures. This is particularly important for multi-story buildings and structures subjected to high winds or seismic activity.

Preventing Collapse

In the event of a fire, wall ties can be crucial in preventing the collapse of walls. Heat can cause one side of a wall to expand differently than the other, leading to potential collapse. Wall ties help distribute and equalise the forces due to thermal expansion across the wall structure.

Aiding Insulation and Damp Prevention

By tightly integrating the two layers of a wall, wall ties can also provide thermal insulation. A well-tied wall reduces heat loss, contributing to energy efficiency in buildings. Moreover, proper installation of wall ties minimises the risk of rainwater seeping into the cavity, thereby preventing damp issues internally. Some wall ties are even designed with a drip point, to stop water from making contact with the inner wall.

Choosing the Right Wall Tie

At BS Fixings, we offer a wide variety of wall ties designed to meet various structural needs and environmental conditions. Choosing the right type of wall tie depends on several factors, including the type of masonry, the load conditions expected on the wall, and specific environmental considerations such as exposure to corrosive elements or extreme weather. Here’s an overview of the different types of wall ties we stock:

  1. Frame Cramp Ties

Frame cramp ties are designed to provide a connection between masonry walls and adjoining structures such as timber frames, concrete, and steelwork. These ties are typically used to secure masonry to a frame with a slot and a hole to accommodate a fixing. They are particularly useful in extensions and retrofitting projects where new structures meet existing buildings.

  1. Remedial Wall Ties

Remedial wall ties are essential for repair and restoration work, particularly in older buildings where the original wall ties might have failed due to corrosion or other damage. These ties are used to replace or supplement existing ties without needing extensive deconstruction. They are generally easy to install and provide a strong, lasting hold, restoring structural integrity to compromised walls.

  1. Helical Wall Ties

Helical wall ties are a popular choice for both new construction and remedial work. They feature a distinctive helical design that allows them to be driven quickly and easily into a predrilled pilot hole in masonry work. This design ensures a strong mechanical hold without the need for expansive pressure, making them ideal for delicate or historic masonry where minimal disturbance is required.

  1. Movement Ties

Movement ties are designed to accommodate natural movements within a structure, such as those caused by thermal expansion and contraction. These ties are not rigidly fixed but allow a certain amount of horizontal movement, which helps prevent cracking and structural damage caused by thermal stresses. They are essential in larger structures where movement is more pronounced.

Installation Matters

Correct installation of wall ties is as important as selecting the right type. Poorly installed wall ties can lead to structural deficiencies, which may not be immediately apparent but can cause issues down the line. At BS Fixings, we not only supply top-quality wall ties but also provide guidance on the best practices for installation. If you require any help with choosing or how to install wall ties, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us!

Our expert team is always on hand to offer advice and support, helping you choose the perfect product for your needs. Contact us on 03330 117818 or email info@bsfixings.co.uk, and we will get back to you as soon as possible.