Find Out Brick Installation Flooring Questions at TheFlooringlady

Because of questions asked about brick floors,where there is no category for brick, I thought it might be useful to create an article from those questions. This collection of Comments and replies covers how to install brick flooring, and to clean and seal brick floors.


I am changing my floors and have always wanted to have brick floors installed. Brick is timeless. I love the look. However, now that I need find the brick – I am overwhemed. I never realized all the choices of brick. I love the black bricks, burgandy and white – typic bricks, but I am afraid it will be too busy looking on my floor. Any suggestions?
lk at November 8, 2007 10:39 AM
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I always think of brick as the terra cotta color, but that’s of course my limited image of them. I think the size of your space will make some difference as to how busy you can make it look with the changing colors. If your space is big enough you could create a wonderful old-world feel with the various colored bricks inter-mixed.
The pattern you select will make a difference too. Maybe you need to select your installation pattern first, and then lay the bricks out in that pattern to see how you like them.
Don’t forget to make sure the floor structure is sturdy enough for the brick. You’d hate to go to the trouble and expense only to have it crack because of floor movement.
The Flooring Lady at November 8, 2007 04:53 PM
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I have always wanted a brick floor, even if it is a vinyl flooring in my kitchen and dining area. However, I cannot find any such vinyl flooring that looks like old fashioned brick floors. We purchased our house over 30 years ago. At that time, we were able to find such a vinyl. However, we refinished the area where we had the vinyl and now have wide pine floors. I have MS and need to have a floor that will be easy for me to keep clean.
If anyone knows of a manufacturer of a brick vinyl flooring, please let me know…even if it is a commercial flooring. Thanks so much.
Betty Dahlberg at December 29, 2007 04:23 PM
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I found a few sites that may have solutions for you.
1. Tarkett Commercial may have a brick floor pattern, though I couldn’t find a picture of it. It’s one of their Azrock vinyl products. [consider the environmental impacts of buying and using vinyl flooring before making this choice]
2. Nafco seems to have a brick patterned vinyl.
There may be more, but my favored Forbo and Armstrong didn’t have an obvious brick vinyl or linoleum flooring product.
Good luck.
The Flooring Lady at December 29, 2007 06:05 PM
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I am remodeling my home and am very interested in using brick pavers for a large area of flooring. I need something durable and love the homey feel of brick flooring. I’ve seen a gorgeous combination of brick pavers installed within a grid pattern of hand scraped wood planks. Do you have any information or ideas on such a combination?
C Rice at January 14, 2008 11:06 PM
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Sorry for the slow response — it was a travel day. I have seen similar installations and think they are great. One design was ceramic tiles with a patterned tile thrown in for variety, all held together and apart by the grid of wood planks. The rougher look of hand-scraped wood planks sounds perfect with the rougher look of brick pavers.
Things to pay attention to include the brick pattern to make sure it fits with the plank grid, the thickness of the the pavers and the planks so you don’t have height variations in the floor, and protecting all the elements of the floor (sealing the different products with their better sealants and at what stage).
I bet you’ll create a fabulous look. If you have more specific questions please ask. And send a picture when you are done so I can post it here for others to get ideas from.
The Flooring Lady at January 15, 2008 06:22 PM
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I want to put brick pavers in my kitchen.
Our house is built off the ground.
Will that make a difference putting the brick pavers down. Some advice was given that with the house settling that it might crack the
morter. Please let me know if you think it is ok
to use the brick pavers?
Jonna at February 18, 2008 09:15 PM
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Settling homes can cause all kinds of problems from the floor up to the ceiling. But the biggest issue of using brick pavers in your kitchen is the strength of the floor structure.
How closely spaced are the floor joists? What thickness subfloor do you have? You can strengthen any floor structure with braces and thick subfloor to make your brick flooring durable.
The Flooring Lady at February 19, 2008 10:37 AM
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When you talk about thin brick pavers, how thin are you talking about? Pavers are thinner than regular bricks. Are you talking something even thinner than a regular paver?
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If you are installing pavers, be sure to have at least 3/4″ subfloor of plywood or OSB. And if the house is old and the joists are further apart than 18″, beef up the floor support too. You don’t want the floor flexing since that’s what breaks the grout and the pavers.
The Flooring Lady at April 9, 2008 12:39 PM
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Have you heard of a brick flooring product called portstone? You might want to check out their website. 1/4″ thick, made in sheets, beautiful colors, easy to install.
Dennis at April 25, 2008 10:47 AM
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Hi Dennis – I’m over at their website now, or should I say still?? I like it!
The Flooring Lady at April 25, 2008 09:18 PM
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We have 300 sq ft of regular brick that someone gave us. We have just bought a house that is built off the ground (not on a slab). Is there any hope of using these bricks as a floor?
Mary K. at April 27, 2008 08:27 PM
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Hi Mary, you have a very interesting question. If you really want to use these bricks you need to strengthen your floor to support the bricks. For brick pavers (face bricks) that are generally used for flooring one would need to have at least 3/4″ sub-floor and reinforced floor joists and supports. For this kind of brick you’ll need, IMHO, at LEAST 1-1/2″ sub-floor and super-reinforced floor joists and supports. I realize this may involve way more than what you’re hoping for, but you don’t want your floors to give under the weight of the brick – that would truly be a horrible thing to happen!
The Flooring Lady at April 28, 2008 08:22 PM
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We are considering a brick floor for our cabin. It will be footed slab with in floor radiant heat. Is it possible to steam clean recycled old chicago brick floor with a terra cotta sealant?
Jennifer at July 21, 2008 01:32 PM
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I’m not following you completely, could you clarify a couple things for me? “Is it possible to steam clean recycled old Chicago brick floor with a terra cotta sealant?” Do you mean steam cleaning it before or after it’s been laid? Is the sealant already on it or is this something you want to do? I presume the terra cotta sealant is a sealant made for terra cotta products and not a sealant color, right?
The Flooring Lady at July 22, 2008
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The website that sells the bricks recommends a terra cotta sealant once the floor has been laid. It is my understanding that no color is involved in the sealant. Since our cabin floor is going to take alot of abuse from kids and dogs, (it will also be in the kitchen), I’m just wondering if cleaning this floor is going to be an issue for me. Only sweeping it may not handle the grease from a kitchen or the wet spots from soggy dogs. Should I be looking in the direction of slate flooring instead of brick? We have not started construction yet, but I’ve been living in this cabin in my mind and wondering if brick flooring with all it’s charm, is not practical. I’m just trying to figure out how to clean it.
Jennifer at July 22, 2008 01:19 PM
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Hi Jennifer!
That’s so much more helpful! So long as the sealant is a penetrating sealant, you should be ok – just don’t be stingy with it. As far as cleaning, the main issue I would think would be that you will have an uneven surface even after sealing and dirt can be more difficult to remove on uneven surfaces than flat, even surfaces. Cleaners are going to depend on the recommendations of the manufacturer that makes the sealant, so it’d be best to check with them once you find out for sure what you’re going to seal it with. Make sure to find out too if the sealer will repel water and grease.
I love the idea of using old recycled brick because it’s the “green” thing to do, but also wonder if you’ve considered brick pavers since they’re not as soft as old bricks can be.
One last thought, don’t know if it will make a difference to you or not. ;~) Brick floors can be a tad uncomfortable on the feet, especially when standing for quite a while. If you should decide to use any throw rugs, be careful of the kind that have non-skid backing. Many times the backing will stick to the floor and you’ll have a devil of a time getting it back off again.
Oh, one more last thought….really! Be sure to keep your dog’s nails trimmed – I hear from lots of people about dog’s toenails scratching the finish on their floors – more associated with wood, slate & Saltillo, but the same would go for those old bricks.
Good luck and I’m sure you’ll love your floor – just be prepared & aware of what the “cons” are and they won’t be so bothersome!
The Flooring Lady at July 22, 2008 04:50 PM
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Thank you so much for your prompt response to my emails. I think you understand my concept. If only I could introduce you to my contractor!!!
PS. Thank you for the toenail tip!!
Jennifer at July 23, 2008 04:41 PM
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You’re welcome Jennifer – that’s what I try to be here for. You’ll have to pop back in to let me know how your floor turned out! ;~)
The Flooring Lady at July 24, 2008 12:08 PM
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My wife and I are considering brick paver flooring in our living room; we long for a natural, old-fashioned look. If our cat should have an “accident,” how easily, and by what method, could it be cleaned? Will urine penetrate the brick causing a permanent smell? Which sealant preparations, if any, can be done to assure that it will not be a a constant source of anxiety for us?
Brad at July 30, 2008 04:24 PM
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It’s going to depend on the paver manufacturer’s recommendations. Once you figure out which paver you want to use then you can give the manufacturer a call. Cat urine will probably have to be cleaned up quickly though – you know what it can do. When you seal the pavers, don’t skimp on the sealants and any other finishes you might use. You didn’t mention what kind of a base is in your living room, whether it’s on a slab (concrete) or has floor joists. Make sure that the floor joists are strong enough, and if they’re not, you’ll need to beef them up to make them sturdier.
The Flooring Lady at July 30, 2008 08:39 PM
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I’m thinking of installing a brick floor. My thought was to first seal the brick before laying them. I want to layer the brick dry in another area butting all the brick together so as not to allow the sealant to go to the sides or the bottom of the brick, then apply sealant with a garden sprayer. I figure this way when grouting, if some mortar got on the edge of the brick, it wouldn’t adhere because of the sealant. After completion, I’d apply another coat to seal the grout. Does this make sense?
Ciro DiLorenzo at November 28, 2008 08:10 AM
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Makes sense I guess, but sounds messy since you’ll have to deal with overspray getting on other surfaces. Most people usually just use a paint brush.
The Flooring Lady at November 30, 2008 07:01 PM
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Just moved into an older home where brick flooring was installed in kitchen and den. To achieve the look they wanted, they painted over the brick and the mortar. I don’t think the mortar was sealed because there are places on the mortar where is is chipped, exposing the bare mortar underneath which is now black with dirt. The floor desparately needs to be cleaned, but don’t know how – should it be steamed cleaned, or would that cause problem with the painted mortar?
Susan at December 5, 2008 03:51 PM
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Wow. It’s hard to say – you’d almost have to test a little of the area. Really, what I would recommend is a product such as StainSolver or Enviro-One. I’ve used both of them for dirty concrete and they both work great. You might have to literally get down on your hands and knees with a scrub brush to clean it, but at least I know you won’t damage it. Good luck!
The Flooring Lady at December 8, 2008
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We are just laying our brick tiles and during construction they are now dingy, dusty, and blah looking. We haven’t sealed them yet and the grout isn’t down. How in the world do we get them clean? Do we just need to wait until the grout is down to do anything?
Kristit at December 8, 2008 07:39 PM
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Hi Kristi,
Why are they dirty if you’re just now laying them? What kind of dirt do you think is in them? Are they being laid inside the house or outside? You should get them clean first (see the link in the post above yours) or you might even want to consider something from the AquaMix product line if you need something stronger. Be sure to seal your brick before grouting or you’re really going to have a tough time getting any excess grout and haze off of your brick before the final step of sealing after you grout.
The Flooring Lady at December 9, 2008 05:54 AM
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We have just laid the brick and have started to grout. We did preseal with a penetrating sealer to help with final cleanup. But I am using a grout bag to help get in the cracks without smearing the grout all over every inch of the bricks. I started to use my finger to smooth the the grout in, and it looks really good. But my finger is taking a beating! Is there a tool made for this job? Any suggestions?
Kathleen at December 14, 2008 06:45 PM
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Hi Kathleen,
I know this is going to sound weird, but I’ve done this before using one of those little souvenir spoons. If you have a truck stop near you, they should have them.
I wouldn’t be surprised if there’s a tool made for this job, but I’ve never found the need to search and buy one.
The Flooring Lady at December 15, 2008 01:02 PM
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we are looking at putting brick throughout our hole house minus the bed rooms. I have not seen this done and have been getting some strange looks when I tell fokls that is what we are doing…is that too much brick?
madison at February 26, 2009 10:07 AM
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Hi Madison,
It might be too much brick. It would depend on the layout of your home, which of course I have no idea of how it’s laid out. If you really like the natural stone that brick provides, you might also want to look into Saltillo tile or other types of stone as well. You’ll also have more decorating options that way as brick is generally found in warm colors and there might be a room you’d rather do in cool colors (lots of colors with stone tiles as well as many types of stone!).
The Flooring Lady at February 27, 2009 10:41 AM
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I am trying to pick out a floor for my back yard and would like to use brick. The trouble is we want to create one level patio and currently have two. One is 5-7 inches lower than the other. The first section is 200 sq feet of 5-7 inch thick concrete and the other is 400 sq feet of 3 inch thick concrete. My question is can we lay the brick directly over the concrete in the first section and raise up the other section using sand? We live in CO so I am curious to know if the freeze thaw cycle with make the flooring uneven. Thank you, Jennifer
Jennifer at June 26, 2009 07:46 PM
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Hi Jennifer, I would recommend that you contact a contractor in this situation.
after further thought:
Freeze-thaw is real problem in Colorado. If water collects among your various layers you’ll be impacted by that natural event. Hopefully you can find a way of leveling the two surfaces to your satisfaction, and budget. I have used brick and stepping stones for patios, but I’ve never had to create a level patio from two different height patios.
Good luck!
The Flooring Lady at June 29, 2009 11:53 AM

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