What Is CMU Wall | Advantages & Disadvantages of CMU Walls | Applications of Concrete Masonry Unit

All About of CMU Wall?

Introduction of CMU Wall

CMU is a modern building unit that has various benefits as compared to bricks. The CMU blocks are available in various shapes and sizes in the market and are widely used in the construction of walls of the building.

In this article, we will discuss all about the concrete masonry units.

What is CMU Wall?

What is CMU Wall?

The CMU wall is constructed with the help of standard sizes concrete masonry units. A concrete masonry unit (CMU)is a versatile and environment-friendly building unit that is available in a variety of shapes and sizes in the market.

The Full form of the CMU is Concrete Masonry units. The CMU walls act as load-bearing walls which are widely used in the construction of residential as well as commercial buildings. The concrete masonry unit has a rectangular shape.

The concrete masonry units have an interlocking system that gets fitted into each other. The concrete blocks are interlocked with the help of interlocking tongues and grooves. The CMU Walls are comprising of steel as a reinforcement and other types of composite materials.

Also, Read: What Is Pad Foundation | Failure of Pad Foundation | Pad Foundation Detail | Types of Pad Foundation | Design of the Pad Footing Depends on Several Factors

Concrete Masonry Unit (CMU) Specifications

Concrete Masonry Unit (CMU) Specifications

The manufacturing process of the concrete masonry units should be as per the standards given by the American Society of Testing and Materials (ASTM).

Following are the standards which are given by the American society for testing and materials.

Designation of ASTM

Types of Concrete Masonry Unit

ASTM C55 Concrete Bricks
ASTM C73 Calcium silicate face brick
ASTM C90 Load bearing Concrete masonry units
ASTM C139 CMUs for construction of Catch Basins and Manholes
ASTM C744 Calcium Silicate Masonry Units and prefaced concrete
ASTM C936 Solid interlocking concrete paving units
ASTM C1372 Segmental Retaining wall units

Also, Read: What Is Road Pattern | Different Types of Road Patterns | Grid Pattern Definition | Radial Pattern | Rectangular or Block Pattern | Minimum Travel Pattern

Concrete Masonry Units (CMU) Shapes

Concrete Masonry Units (CMU) Shapes

The CMU concrete units are available in various shapes in the market which are as follows.

  1. Single corner unit: – The single corner unit has only one end which is squared off. It is generally used at the end of the wall where the end of the block is exposed.
  2. Stretcher Unit: – The stretcher unit has a flange extension on both of its ends. It is generally used in the middle of the walls where both ends are covered by the adjoining bricks.
  3. Double corner unit: – The Double corner unit has two ends that are squared off. This type of block is generally used to create vertical pillars.
  4. Sash units: – Sash units have slots cut in the flat ends. These are used around the windows and door openings to provide the expansion space.
  5. Cap Units: – The Cap units are the solid and thin concrete blocks that are generally used to open the cavities at the top of the concrete block walls.
  6. Bullnose blocks: – The bullnose blocks are also available in the market with one end rounded.

These all are the various shapes of the concrete masonry units which are available according to the requirement and the design of the construction projects.

CMU Wall Details (Concrete Masonry Units)

CMU Wall Details (Concrete Masonry Units)

The concrete masonry walls get manufactured from the precast concrete and it is the most versatile building unit which is very easy to construct. The construction done with the concrete masonry unit is very fast. The CMU walls required very less maintenance and they are more durable.

CMU Block Dimensions

CMU Block Dimensions

Concrete Masonry blocks are available in various sizes in the market. The concrete masonry blocks are also available in the half sizes due to which the end of the corner of the walls can be constructed accurately.

The concrete masonry blocks are identified with their depth and the thickness of the wall. The nominal dimensions of the concrete masonry blocks are given below in the tabular format. CMU or cinder Block Weight. The concrete masonry blocks are made with a mixture of Portland cement, sand, aggregate, and water in the appropriate proportion

Sizes of the CMU Blocks

Nominal Dimensions of the CMU Blocks

4” Full Blocks 4” x 8” x 16”
4” Full Blocks 4” x 8” x 8”
6” Full Blocks 6” x 8” x 16”
6” Full Blocks 6” x 8” x 8”
8” Full Blocks 8” x 8” x 16”
8” Full Blocks 8” x 8” x 8”
10” Full Blocks 10” x 8” x 16”
10” Full Blocks 10” x 8” x 8”
12” Full Blocks 12” x 8” x 16”
12” Full Blocks 12” x 8” x 8”

Also, Read: What Is Tie Beam | Tie Beam Details | Advantages of Using Tie Beam | Tie Beam Reinforcement | Why Are Use Concrete Tie Beam

CMU or Cinder Block Weight

The weight of the cinder blocks or Concrete masonry units mainly depends upon the density of the concrete used in the manufacturing of the concrete blocks.

The concrete block units are classified into three categories according to their weight

  1. Lightweight CMU Blocks: The weight of the lightweight cinder blocks is less than 105 fb/ft3.
  2. Medium weight CMU blocks: The weight of the medium weight concrete masonry blocks ranges between 105 fb/ft3 to 125 fb/ft3.
  3. Normal weight CMU blocks: The weight of the normal weight CMU blocks is more than 125 fb/ft3.

CMU Blocks Compressive Strength

The compressive strength is one of the most important criteria which should be tested before using any construction material or building unit. The concrete masonry walls have compressive strength which ranges from 7MPa up to 35 MPA. The compressive strength of the concrete masonry unit mainly depends upon the mix design and the quality of concrete used in the manufacturing of the concrete masonry blocks.

Advantages of CMU Walls 

Advantages and Disadvantages

  1. There are various advantages of CMU walls which are as follows
  2. The concrete masonry unit walls are more durable as compared to the brick walls. The concrete masonry units are very easy to install and require very little maintenance. The CMU walls have good resistance to fire.
  3. The construction of the CMU Walls is economical as compared to the brick walls.
  4. The concrete masonry units are larger than conventional bricks.
  5. The steel reinforcement is also used in the CMU walls which increases the load-bearing capacity of the CMU walls.
  6. CMU walls are best suitable for areas with aggressive environmental conditions.

Disadvantages of CMU Walls

There are also some disadvantages of CMU wall construction which are as follows

  1. The concrete masonry unit does not have good resistance to water penetration.
  2. The concrete masonry blocks require an additional coat to its surface to make it water-resistant which increases the cost.
  3. Concrete masonry blocks have less thermal resistance.

Also, Read: What Is a Brick Bat Coba |  Procedure of Brick Bat Coba Waterproofing | Advantages &  Disadvantage of Brick Bat Coba Waterproofing

Applications of Concrete Masonry Unit

Concrete masonry units have wide applications in construction which are as follows

  1. The concrete blocks are used in the construction of the foundation walls and the basement walls.
  2. The concrete masonry blocks are also used for the decorative purpose which will enhance the aesthetical view of the structure.
  3. CMU is also used in the construction of the exterior walls as well as partition walls.

CMU Wall Construction

CMU Wall Construction

The step by step process of the CMU wall construction are as follows

1. Marking of the Layout of the Foundation

The first step before starting the CMU wall construction is marking the layout of the foundation on the ground with lime as per the design plan. The layout of the complete building should be marked on the ground.

2. Excavation

The next step after the marking of the foundation is to excavate the earth for the construction of the foundation. The depth of the excavation on the ground depends upon the design of the foundation.

3. Construction of the Foundation

The CMU walls should be rest on the firm foundation. The footing should be constructed at the required depth. The foundation should be constructed and poured with concrete. It is necessary that sufficient curing of the foundation should be done.

4. Construction of CMU Wall

The suitable size and the shape of the concrete masonry blocks should be selected as per the requirement and the design of the CMU walls. CMU walls are constructed with different types of blocks such as stretchers and corner units. Each layer of the joint should be properly connected with each other.

5. Addition of the Reinforcement

The only wall constructed with the concrete masonry units cannot able to resist the tensile stresses which may lead to cracking. The horizontal, as well as the vertical steel reinforcements, should be added to the CMU walls.

6. Finishing of the Joints

The joints of the CMU Walls should be properly finished with the help of mortar.

Also, Read; Bar Bending Schedule Formulas As Per IS:2502-1963 | Unit Weight of Steel Bars

CMU Block Cost

The cost of the CMU blocks ranges from $3 to $5 per square foot. The labor and the installation cost of the concrete masonry units is around $10 to $12. The concrete masonry units with less weight are less expensive than the high density CMU blocks. Lightweight concrete blocks require less cost for its installation.

FAQ

CMU Wall

A concrete masonry unit (CMU) is a standard-size rectangular block used in building construction. CMUS are some of the most versatile building products available because of the wide variety of appearances that can be achieved using them.

How Do You Waterproof CMU Wall?

  1. Apply a Coating Directly on the Bare Wall.
  2. Use a Breathable / Permeable Barrier.
  3. Use a Weather-Resistant Elastomeric Layer.
  4. Use “The Pink Stuff”
  5. Repair Cracks and Fill Voids First.
  6. Install an Air and Moisture Barrier.

CMU Block Retaining Wall

It’s especially useful, and possibly needed if you have a yard that slopes, but it can be applied just for design as well. Retaining walls can be made of CMU blocks, bricks, stones, and wood. Just like sidewalks, CMU walls can be made stronger by adding rebar to the structure; rebar stands for steel reinforcement bars.

8 Inch CMU Block

In the US, CMU blocks are nominally 16 in (410 mm) long and 8 in (200 mm) wide. Their actual dimensions are 3⁄8 inch (9.5 mm) less than the nominal dimensions (to allow for 3⁄8-inch mortar joints between blocks in any orientation).

CMU Retaining Wall

What is a CMU retaining wall? CMU stands for Concrete Masonry Unit. It’s a standard size block used in the construction of walls and buildings. A retaining wall is exactly what it sounds like. It’s a wall that holds back soil from spilling down or eroding.

CMU Veneer

CMU Veneer Is a Very Durable Siding Product Made from Concrete Blocks That Is Easily Maintained and Much Less Expensive Than Brick Veneer.  CMU Veneer Requires Anchoring into the Adjacent Wall System with Part of Those Anchors Embedded into the Mortar Joints of CMU Veneer.

Retaining Wall CMU Blocks

It’s especially useful, and possibly needed if you have a yard that slopes, but it can be applied just for design as well. Retaining walls can be made of CMU blocks, bricks, stones, and wood. Just like sidewalks, CMU walls can be made stronger by adding rebar to the structure; rebar stands for steel reinforcement bars.

CMU Block Wall

A concrete masonry unit (CMU) is a standard-size rectangular block used in building construction. In non-technical usage, the terms cinder block and breeze block are often generalized to cover all of these varieties.

Waterproof CMU Wall

Below-grade waterproofing CMU walls is critical since most CMU is porous and therefore susceptible to moisture and water infiltration. The CMU must be thoroughly dry before installing the waterproofing. Because of the porosity of the CMU, water can wick through much of the wall.

Cost of CMU Retaining Wall

Installing a 50′ long retaining wall costs $4,000 to $10,000 on average. Retaining wall labor costs $10 to $30 per square foot and material prices are $5 to $20 per square foot on average.

Retaining Wall Cost Per Square Foot

A retaining wall costs $20 to $50 per square foot on average or up to $150 per square foot for complex layouts, specialty materials, and sloped or limited-access sites.

Wall Type Total Cost per Square Foot
Cmu Retaining Wall Cost $20 – $35
Poured Concrete $20 – $45
Rammed Earth $20 – $30
Precast Panels $25 – $40
Interlocking Modular $15 – $35
Brick $30 – $60

Fire Rated CMU Wall

For partially grouted concrete masonry walls using 8-inch thick cmu rated at 2 hours, the fire-resistance rating can be increased to 4 hours when ungrouted cores are filled with any of the following: Silicone-treated perlite loose-fill insulation conforming to ASTM C 549.

CMU Block Wall Cost

The national average materials cost to install a cmu block wall is $2.49 per square foot, with a range between $1.98 to $2.99. The total price for labor and materials per square foot is $14.44, coming in between $12.76 to $16.11.

Masonry Block Wall

Block walls contain Concrete Masonry Units (CMU) that can be stacked to form a retaining wall or part of a building. Each block contains standard concrete, a mixture of gravel and sand, and Portland cement as the adhesive.

Concrete Masonry Unit Wall

Concrete masonry units (CMU) are made from a mixture of portland cement and aggregates under controlled conditions. The units can be made to various dimensions, but typically have face dimensions of 8 inches high by 16 inches wide (nominal).

Concrete Block Wall Construction

Architectural CMU Block

Concrete Blocks, or Concrete Masonry Units (CMU) as they are known as in the architectural and masonry industries, are the core building material of masonry structures. Since 1947, RCP Block & Brick has been producing concrete block with unmatched quality, consistency, and design.

Cost to Build Cinder Block Wall

While some capstones can cost as little as $0.95 apiece, the average cost of a cinder block is $1 to $3 each. The total cost of building a cinder block wall ranges between $9 and $12 per square foot with labor, so an 8 x 15-foot wall would cost between $1,080 and $1,440.

1 thought on “What Is CMU Wall | Advantages & Disadvantages of CMU Walls | Applications of Concrete Masonry Unit”

  1. CMU wall is the best type of load-bearing wall. I have learned a lot about this type of wall from this article. Thanks for sharing this article. I Hope, this will be helpful for every Civil engineer.

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