Provisions for Dimensional Changes

In design and construction of masonry walls, allowance should be made for relative movements of the masonry and contiguous construction. If this is not done, unsightly or troublesome cracking or even structural failure may result. In the past, such damage has occurred in masonry walls because of:
1. Restraint offered by contiguous construction to dimensional changes in the masonry.
Such changes may be produced by temperature changes or by absorption
of water by the masonry after construction.
2. Restraint offered by the masonry to movements of or dimensional changes in contiguous or bonded construction, such as concrete frames or backup walls.
Such changes may be produced by drying shrinkage, elastic deformations under load, or creep of the concrete after construction.
To avoid such restraints, it is necessary to install in walls expansion joints with proper gaps, at appropriate intervals, and to break bond between the walls and??construction that would restrain relative movements (Fig. 11.10).
Vertical expansion joints should be installed in masonry walls to permit horizontal movements of the masonry, and horizontal expansion joints, to permit vertical movements. In the absence of specific information on thermal and water absorption properties, the unit strain may be assumed to be 0.0007 in / in in a brick wall when movement is restricted, for example, by bond to a concrete foundation.

Thus, for 60-ft spacing of expansion joints in a straight brick wall, a joint width of 2 x 60 x 12 x0.0007, or about 1 in, would be required. In general, spacing of vertical expansion joints should range between 50 and 100 ft, and a joint should be placed not more than 30 ft from wall intersections.
The width required for an expansion joint also depends on the maximum allowable strain of the sealant used to seal the gap. If the size of a joint is controlled by the elastic properties of the sealant, joint spacing should be adjusted to limit the joint size to accommodate the elasticity of the sealant. The sealant should be placed at the exterior wall face and inserted in the joint to a depth of at least 1⁄8 in but not deeper than one-half the joint width. This depth may be controlled by a backup material that is inserted in the joint before the sealant is applied and that will not adhere to the sealant.
In brick facades, horizontal expansion joints should be inserted directly under horizontal lintels that are supported on concrete frames (Fig. 11.10g). The joints  should be sized for probable expansion of the masonry below the lintels plus probable shortening of the concrete frame produced by drying shrinkage, compressive loading, and creep. In the absence of specific information on the properties of the materials to be used, a relative vertical movement of 0.0014 in / in may be assumed.

Thus, where a brick facade is supported on steel shelf angles, for example, spaced 15 ft apart vertically, a gap of 15  12  0.0014, or about 1⁄4 in, would be required.
As for vertical joints, a sealant and backup material should seal the horizontal expansion joint.
Slip joints should be provided where abrupt changes in wall dimensions occur;
for example, at panels bounding or included between openings in a masonry wall, such as those for windows and doors. Bond should be prevented by insertion of sheet metal, building paper, or other material that would permit sliding when thermal movements occur.
Similarly, to permit relative horizontal movements, slip planes should be provided between cast-in-place concrete floors or roofs and masonry bearing walls that support them (Fig. 11.5a). Flexible anchors that permit sliding may be installed between the slabs and walls to prevent uplift. Such anchors, however, should not be installed within a distance from a slab corner of one-tenth the slab length. The reason for this is that such corners tend to curl upward when shrinkage occurs, in which case the anchorages would apply tension to and crack the walls.
Particular care should be taken to provide for relative movements when dissimilar materials are combined in a wall. Preferably, they should be separated at least 1⁄2 in and joined with flexible ties (Fig. 11.10b and d). In particular, because of different thermal movements of the materials, bond should be prevented between brick walls and contiguous concrete foundation walls below that are exposed to the weather (Fig. 11.5b). Flexible anchors should be provided between the walls and  foundations, to permit horizontal sliding yet prevent uplift. Also, foundations should be made sufficiently stiff to prevent deflections that would crack the walls above.
In addition, for the same purpose, the walls may be designed as deep beams or Vierendeel masonry trusses. (A Vierendeel truss does not consist solely of triangular configurations of members as do conventional trusses, and thus the members are subjected to a combination of axial forces and bending moments. Such a truss would be formed by a wall with openings for doors and windows.)
When bearing-wall construction is used for a building, differential movements of adjacent supports of horizontal structural members should be kept very small.
For this reason, bearing walls of dissimilar materials should not be used in the same structure, inasmuch as they are likely to have physical properties that cause unequal deformations. For example, either load-bearing brick walls or concrete walls, but not both, should be used in a structure.

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