Updated on July 7, 2023

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Created on June 9, 2016

Bottle Bricks

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Plastic Bottle Bricks consists of plastic bottles filled with compacted sand, plastics, or some other non-organic material to create a dense and strong brick used for construction.

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Product Description

Plastic Bottle Bricks consists of plastic bottles filled with compacted sand, plastics, or some other non-organic material to create a dense and strong brick used for construction. An example of a website that shares information about this method of building is called Ecobricks.org.

Market Suggested Retail Price

$1.00

Distributors / Implementing Organizations

Varies. No company distributes bottle bricks, since they are intended to be manufactured using local recycled materials. There are a few organizations (Growth International Volunteer Excursions, Ecobricks.orgBottlebrick.com, and others) that have their own bottle brick projects in countries around the world.

Manufacturing/Building Method

Bottle bricks are individually manufactured by stuffing sand, recycled plastics or any other inorganic material that can be stuffed into each bottle and compressed inside the bottle with any solid pole or stick. It was developed to be built using locally available materials.

Intellectural Property Type

Open Source

User Provision Model

A bottle brick can be created anywhere there are excess plastic bottles and sand, plastic waste or any other non-organic material that can be stuffed and compressed inside the bottle.

Distributions to Date Status

Unknown

Thermal Insulation Capacity

It depends on which material is used to fill up the bottle and its size.
With sand, the R-value is 6.7.

Compressive Strength (MPa)

0.162 N/mm^2

Suitable Climates

Tropical, Arid, Temperate, Continental

Design Specifications

Bottle bricks can vary in size, even throughout a structure. The materials that can be stuffed inside the bottle should be an inorganic waste, such as plastic bags, plastic wrappers, plastic mesh, twist ties, etc. The bottles can also be filled with sand.

Technical Support

Manufacturing a bottle brick is a simple process that can be taught to anyone, anywhere. Constructing with bottle bricks requires general brick construction knowledge. There are many different specific manuals available online.

Replacement Components

None

Lifecycle

The lifetime of a bottle brick structure depends on the quality of the design and the construction methods used.

Manufacturer Specified Performance Parameters

N/A

Vetted Performance Status

Bottle Brick performance with and without sand is available from an Engineers Without Borders Report titled "Final Report - Plastic Bottle Bricks".

Safety

If the bottle bricks used in a structure are not dense enough, the structure will lose strength, and the building will have a higher risk of failure. Also, the construction method that incorporates the bottle bricks must ensure proper structural strength for the structure to remain standing.

Complementary Technical Systems

A bottle brick requires an adhesive substance (sand, cement, adobe, etc.) to hold the bricks together. Wooden beams, other bricks, and any other construction materials/methods can incorporate bottle bricks, even if the bottle bricks are not the main structural component.

Academic Research and References

Shoubi, M.V., Shoubi, M.V., Barough, A.S., Investigating the Application of Plastic Bottle as a Sustainable Material in the Building Construction [IJSETR]. Islamic Azad University; 2013 Jan;2(1) [cited 2016 Jul 15].

Kozlesky, J. A., Investigation of the Seismic Capacity of a School Built with Recycled Materials 2012 May. University of Toledo.

Compliance with regulations

N/A. There are no existing standards for using bottle bricks in construction.

Other Information

Extensive Instruction Manual on some basic rules and practices of constructing with bottle bricks.

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