Weather Resistance

Canadians are no strangers to extreme weather conditions. In Ontario, summer temperatures can range up to 40ºC (100ºF) and our winters can drop to -30ºC (-22ºF). According to the provincial 2012 Climate Change Progress report, we experienced our hottest, driest weather on record in July of 2012 in what has been a chain of progressively longer summers. Thankfully, masonry materials have the capability of absorbing heat and releasing it over time, which lessens dependence on energy-consuming air conditioners and heaters. Harsh cold and hot climes can stress most building materials, decreasing their integrity through rapid expansion and contraction, so this is something Ontarians will have to consider in purchasing a new home.

“The weather is changing and we need to design our buildings with climate change in mind.”
David Philips, meteorologist for Environment Canada1

Besides material degradation, extreme temperatures can also cause atmospheric anomalies that can potentially lead to hurricanes and tornadoes. In 2004, an American debris impact testing study was performed which sent 2 x 4-in timber planks careening towards common exterior cladding materials in hurricane-level wind speeds. Brick, block and stone successfully resisted perforation / penetration and sustained minimal damage, whereas other materials, including brick veneer (thin brick facing) could not withstand the impact.

The Insurance Bureau of Canada estimates that unusual
weather conditions accounted for $800 million in property damage between 2000 and 2004.



1. Ontario Ministry of Environment. “Introduction”. Climate Vision/Climate Change Progress Report. 2012. PDF available online:   /lr/@ene/@resources/documents/resource/stdprod_101103.pdf

Pryma, Judy. “Brick and Masonry: Climate change may mean growing role for time-tested products”.SAB Magazine. FALL 2007.

“Shelter From the Storm. Even a Category 4 Hurricane.” The Brick Industry. Available online: