The advantages of hollow tiles for building purposes are so obvious that their growing popularity is in no way surprising. The air spaces in the tiles form a protection against damp, and against heat in summer and cold in winter; while the durability, low cost of maintenance, and fireproof qualities already mentioned in connection with bricks are possessed to an equal degree by hollow tile. Perhaps the ideal combination is that of a hollow-tile building with a brick facing. This gives the desirable insulation against dampness and extremes of temperature possessed by hollow tile, together with the architectural effects of brick. It is, also, possible to obtain a special type of hollow tile having a face similar in character to the ordinary brick, and, with this type, effects very similar to those obtained with face brick can be produced. The commonest finish for a hollow-tile house is, however, stucco.
1 Full details relating to the colors and textures of brick and information relating to all phases of its use in construction may be had on application to the Division of Building and Housing, U.S. Department of Commerce; the American Face Brick Association, 130 N. Wells St., Chicago; and the Common Brick Mfrs. Association, 2121 Guarantee Title Bldg., Cleveland, Ohio.
2 Adapted from The House-Owner's Book (New York: Funk & Wagnalls, 1928), pp. 32-42.
.... [Hollow tile] should be free from cracks and well burned, especially when used for outside walls.....The relative size of voids and shells is also of some importance. The void should not measure more than four inches in width and the thickness of the webs and shells should not be less than fifteen per cent of the width of the void. Where hollow tile is used for inside partitions, it is not necessary to be quite so particular regarding quality.
As regards the cost of hollow tile, the general public, as in the case of brick, has an exaggerated idea of the expense involved. Moreover, the slight extra cost over frame construction is usually more than offset by the saving in repairs, painting, insurance and in fuel.