Visit the following pages for information on brick:
Brick isn't always Just Brick!
Historically, materials and methods used for making brick has varied by area. Bricks are made primarily of clay and sand. The characteristics of clay soil varies by area, and for that reason, so do bricks. Brick manufacturing methods have also varied over time, so that bricks used in building 19th and early 20th century New York City will have different performance characteristics from bricks made in the 1940s Denver and those made in modern day San Francisco.
To complicate matters, brick has been designed according to purpose, so the condition and performance of bricks from the same time frame and manufacturing facility may vary depending on their final intended use, and whether or not they have (properly or improperly) had some sort of coating applied.
Although all brick has performance characteristics in common to some degree, learning the fine points of inspecting brick can require local education!
The Brick Industry Association offers a number of resources for home inspectors, including technical notes and briefs.