Brick is a construction medium which has been made out of clay and fired in a kiln to create a solid and uniform structure. The standard builder's housing brick or fire brick is 76mm x 230mm x 110mm is size. Brick ovens are built utilising a combination of builder's bricks for the foundation and dome, and a hearth of fire bricks.
Different bricks are used in making of pizza ovens. You have to use bricks for constructing the cooking floor, oven dome, oven landing, decorative vent arch, and others. Not bricks are not suitable for all parts of pizza oven due to the different temperatures experienced. Below are listed different bricks with their uses in pizza oven construction:
This type of fire brick is recommended to be used for both dome construction and the oven floor (hearth) of the pizza oven. This brick contains around 50% silica and 35% alumina. This composition helps the oven to heat-up and cool down without causing structural issues. Medium duty firebrick helps to establish the required temperature for baking pizza quicker than other clay bricks. As the hearth made with medium duty firebrick may cool down quickly, it will help to prolong the lifespan of the oven. Fire bricks with a straight edge should be used when building the hearth of a pizza oven.
This brick contains a higher amount of alumina than the medium duty fire brick. High amounts of alumina allows the brick to heat quicker and thus is highly recommended for the use in building furnaces. In building pizza ovens, high duty firebrick are widely used due to the minimal time required for the adequate temperature temperature to be reached for cooking pizzas.
The standard red clay brick is made of common clay and is normally fired for several hours in a kiln which makes them red in color. Red clay brick are generally only recommended for the oven dome or foundation. It's not recommended to use this brick for the oven floor as they are likely prone to crack when exposed to the extreme temperatures of the direct fire burning above. These bricks may be utilised for the oven dome however there are two potential disadvantages which may eventuate. Due to high temperature small pieces of clay may flaked off which could results in cracks. Additionally this brick is not as good in heat conduction as with the fire brick, which may result in longer times required to bring the oven to cooking temperatures.
The concrete brick or Besser block brick is made from Portland cement based concrete which is then air dried. This brick will not withstand sufficient heat in a pizza oven and thus it is not recommended for any areas which receive direct heat. The brick is commonly used for construction of the foundation due to their cheap cost and reduced construction durations.
This brick is light in weight and may be used to insulate pizza ovens for improved heat retaining properties. Low conductivity and heat holding capacity makes it suitable insulating material. As this brick is widely available it has become a popular insulating material.