Is it better to use bricks or concrete blocks for a retaining wall?

Which is Cheaper Bricks or Concrete Blocks?

With many types of building solutions on the market, it could be difficult to know what option would suit your needs, whether you are building temporary storage or a retaining wall.

In this blog, we at PPC Concrete Products will be answering the question, ‘Which is cheaper, bricks or concrete blocks?’

This question is a reasonably common one as anybody engaging in a building project will want to save as much money as possible without sacrificing quality or making the project longer than it was supposed to be.

With the necessity of time and cost-efficient building solutions being needed, as construction output in Great Britain has seen an increase, alternatives to traditional brick-and-mortar builds are required for those looking to save time and money.

interlocking concrete blocks are a popular and effective option to use in order to help create your retaining wall or for your project. But first, let us explain a little about them.

PPC Interlocking concrete blocks

As building regulations came into being in England, the requirement of having fire proof dwellings was compulsory, this was achieved by subsequent houses being made of stone and brick. Interlocking concrete blocks present a modern alternative.

Interlocking concrete blocks are a unique form of pre-cast concrete blocks that are designed to hold together by using pre-measured studs and recesses. Built with unique profiles and features, which allow them to fit perfectly into each other without the use of any mortar. Instead, the cementitious blocks simply snap together with each other.

Depending on the size of the block that is chosen will affect the number of studs that are on the block. In regards to the sizing, interlocking concrete blocks don’t need mortar to be held in place. This means the speed of building is improved, whilst using less manpower.

Other concrete providers may offer “concrete lego blocks” the differences between the two aside from their names are nominal. The functionality is the same, and the only variants will be the sizes, amount of studs/recesses or styles, such as the ‘rock face’ option we offer. Other suppliers may offer alternative styles and sizes than us and as a result, you may be paying a premium price for it.

The advantages of interlocking concrete blocks

  • Longer lasting and more durable than a Gabion basket
  • Quicker and less hassle to install
  • No need for mortar, saving you money and time
  • No need for steel reinforcement or shuttering
  • Resistant to extreme weather conditions
  • Fire-resistant properties, mitigating the spread of fire depending on the structure
  • Little maintenance required
  • Often, no foundation is needed before installing
  • Sound resistant
  • Sustainable
  • Ability to stack them upon each other
  • Flexibility in sizes
  • Appropriate for temporary and/or permanent buildings
  • Unlikely to be displaced due to the interlocking function
  • Can be moved with standard lifting equipment

What are interlocking concrete blocks used for?

As we at PPC Concrete products supply interlocking concrete blocks, we can share with you what they are used for.

  • Material Storage bays
  • Blast walls
  • Salt stores
  • Crash protection
  • Push walls
  • Security barriers
  • Segregation bays i.e recycling centres
  • Retaining walls
  • Industrial buildings
  • Fire breaks
  • Counterweights
  • Roadblocks

And much more.

Can you make a retaining wall without bricks?

As we’ve established, retaining walls can be made with our interlocking concrete blocks, but how long do they actually last? Even though we can’t provide a set amount of time, we can guarantee our interlocking concrete blocks are resilient, to say the least.

Realistically, it can’t be affected by heavy winds or extreme weather which could be a possibility when using a material such as wood for your retaining wall, especially if the wall isn’t thick. Unless there is a high-velocity impact, a retaining wall made of our interlocking concrete blocks will be long-lasting & resilient.

How do I know when to replace my retaining wall?

For those considering rebuilding their current retaining walls, there may be signs that you can see that can determine whether or not it needs a rebuild with a more resilient component like our interlocking concrete blocks. The signs are:

  • The retaining wall isn’t serving its purpose
  • There are damages on the retaining wall that are affecting its effectiveness
  • (if made of wood) the wood has become rotten or weak.
  • Cracks on the wall
  • Bulging in areas of the wall can be due to the wall not being able to take the weight because of poor drainage of the soil
  • A tilt in the wall

We’ve made mention of our interlocking concrete blocks being used to make retaining walls, but what exactly are they? As we continue we will explain our interlocking concrete blocks.

Which is cheaper bricks or concrete blocks?

There is no definitive consistent answer to this question as it depends entirely on your project, whether it’s a retaining wall you’re making or something else, there are multiple factors that come into play that affect the cost you will have to eventually pay.

That being said, there are a few advantages interlocking concrete blocks have over bricks that are worth considering depending on your project.

Why would concrete blocks be cheaper?

  • Concrete blocks require less manpower to place, which means saving money by using fewer builders.
  • Our concrete blocks do not require any binding as they connect to each other without the need for cement, saving you more money by not having to buy extra materials.
  • Concrete blocks are heavy and near impossible to budge without machinery, meaning there is less chance of them breaking, moving or collapsing, saving money in the long term.

Do bricks last longer than concrete?

A well-built structure can last for a very long time, whether it is made from brick or concrete. something we must consider with brickwork, like with a wall for example, is that there are multiple bricks used in order to create that wall, if one of those bricks becomes dislodged or heavily damaged, it will affect the structural integrity.

The brickwork can also be affected if the cement is added unevenly, leaving a chance for structural issues to take form. Not to mention brickwork being more prone to chips and cracks.

To answer this question, it is entirely possible for bricks to last longer than concrete. However, this is dependent on the build being absolutely perfect, to specification, with no influence from external forces like impact or extreme weather. Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case with brickwork.

What kinds of interlocking concrete blocks are there?

Our team over at PPC Concrete Products supplies different types of interlocking concrete blocks. Though we have a variety of options when it comes to the interlocking concrete blocks that we make.

The way our blocks are made is by having a casting of the dimensions mentioned below and depending on the option chosen, the cast is then filled with concrete. Each block has a Lifting pin anchor system embedded in the concrete at the point of casting – this is how the blocks are moved once the concrete is set.

After setting, the cast is then removed and the blocks are transported to their destination.

we offer the option for your block to be:

  • Standard Blocks
  • Flat Top Standard Blocks
  • Rock Face Block
  • Rock Face Flat Top Block

To view what these options look like, take a look at our gallery.

 Here are our size options:

  • 300 x 600 x 600
  • 600 x 600 x 600
  • 900 x 600 x 600
  • 1200 x 600 x 600
  • 1500 x 600 x 600
  • 1800 x 600 x 600
  • 400 x 800 x 800
  • 800 x 800 x 800
  • 1200 x 800 x 800
  • 1600 x 800 x 800

Half and thirds of the sizes displayed are also offered with your order if needed.

In regard to the weight of the blocks, it will vary from size to size, and from the concrete being used. But as an example, an 1800 x 600 x 600 concrete block can weigh 1560 kg, this can fluctuate as different types of concrete have different levels of density.

Contact PPC Concrete Products today

As an established supplier all over the UK, PPC Concrete Products is always happy to help, which is why we encourage you to get in touch with any questions you may have or take a look at our FAQ.

In this article, we hope to have answered the question ‘which is cheaper, bricks or concrete blocks?’ Whilst also providing extra information in regard to construction and the benefits of interlocking concrete blocks.

Take a read of our case studies to truly understand how we have provided solutions for business in the past with the use of our interlocking concrete blocks, and ultimately, how we can help you today.

Read our blog page for more insights into our passion, construction.


The Old Gasworks,

Higginshaw Lane,




Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Google