UPDATED 27Mar2020 + downloadable construction guide: Conventional brick ties are one of those common construction details that strikes me as just barely good enough to do the job. The Simpson Strong-Tie BTH brick tie is different. It’s the best example I’ve seen of a high-end tie that’s also economical and widely available. Large air space capacity is one reason why. The BTH can accommodate wider-than-usual spaces between the masonry and the underlying wall frame. It’s the only option I’ve seen for tying brick veneer or manufactured stone to a wood or metal framework with up to a 3” air space between.
Strength is another reason the BTH impresses me. Unlike regular zig-zag brick ties, the BTH is angled in cross section, creating a tie that’s rigid both in compression and tension. It’s also easy to bend the nailing tab on the BTH to customize it for different air space gaps. Just determine a desired gap width, then bend accordingly before using a screw or nail to anchor the tie to the frame. The BTH brick tie is available from Simpson Strong-Tie dealers. I had to wait a week or so for my local building supplier to get a case in for me, so plan ahead.
Want to know what goes into today’s best brick veneer construction jobs? Click here for a detailed guide plus a downloadable “best brick practices” illustration.