Difference Between Cinder Blocks & Concrete Blocks


Cinder block and concrete block are two different structural elements often confused with each other. Although their major parts are same, they have different properties. In this article, we’ll discuss the difference between cinder blocks and concrete blocks.

While concrete blocks are generally stronger, cinder blocks are lighter. This means cinder blocks are more suitable for houses and small buildings. And concrete blocks are more commonly used in large structures.

These two materials also have different advantages and disadvantages. For example, concrete blocks tend to be stronger than cinder blocks, but they’re prone to buckling and bending. 

However, many building codes prohibit the use of cinder blocks for civil construction, and they are more expensive. While both are durable, their strength and durability may not be the same. Let’s discuss their differences briefly below.

What Are Cinder Blocks

Cinder blocks are hollow coal concrete blocks. Due to being lightweight, cinder blocks are ideal for garden walls. They don’t work well for larger construction projects, but they are an excellent choice for some smaller projects. 

These lightweight blocks have a lower price and are easier to move than standard concrete blocks. And while their strength differs from the latter, they’re still a good choice for a home in many ways.

Uses of Cinder Blocks

Following are the uses of cinder blocks

  • Cinder blocks can be used as centerpieces to enhance the room’s appearance.
  • Cinder blocks can be used to make a grill, firewood storage, birdhouses, etc.
  • You can build an outer fireplace with cinder blocks that give a cozy look.

What Are Concrete Blocks

Concrete blocks are common building blocks made from cement, water, and various aggregates, such as crushed stone, gravel, or sand. They are mixed with water and then allowed to cure. 

Concrete blocks are strong, robust, and durable. There are a variety of concrete blocks that come in various shapes and sizes, and they can be solid or hollow blocks.

Uses of Concrete Blocks

1. Concrete Blocks are an excellent choice for partition walls since they’re quick and simple to set up. The addition of steel reinforcement increases the strength of the structure.

2. Hollow Concrete blocks can be used to build load-bearing exterior and interior walls, partition walls, panel walls, and boundary walls.

3. Solid concrete blocks can be used to build great chimney and fireplace places in buildings; however, they are also great for non-load bearing walls and garden walls.

4. Concrete blocks can also be used in many smaller landscaping tasks. There are various outdoor furniture & patio ideas, for example, outdoor seating, decorative screens, outdoor bars, flower bed, and many more.

5. Concrete blocks can protect storage facilities from adverse weather conditions. It’s not surprising that engineers use concrete blocks to build material bins.

Advantages of Concrete Blocks

  • Arranging concrete blocks is easy and doesn’t require much-skilled labor. 
  • Making concrete blocks is much easier, quicker, and more durable than brick masonry.
  • The ideal shape and size of the block make the job of a mason significantly easier.
  • There is a saving of mortar in construction because the numbers of joints are less.
  • It expands the carpet area of the structure due to the smaller width of the concrete block in comparison with a brick wall.
  • It gives greater thermal insulation, improved fire resistance, and better sound absorption.
  • It helps to save valuable agricultural land that is utilized to manufacture bricks.

Difference Between Cinder Blocks & Concrete Blocks

Cinder BlocksConcrete Blocks
In cinder blocks ash is used as an aggregate.In concrete block construction, ash can be used to construct wall units.
Cinder blocks can’t be reinforced with metal.Concrete blocks can be reinforced with metal.
Cinder blocks are less durable than concrete blocks.The durability of concrete blocks is higher than cinder blocks.
Cinder blocks are mostly used in lightweight projects.For heavy construction projects concrete blocks are used.
Cinder blocks need a lot of repairs, therefore, the overall cost will be higher.Concrete blocks don’t need repairs.
Cinder block is a traditional building material. Production in mass quantities hasn’t been in the past 50 years.Concrete block is often used due to its durability as well as its other advantages.
Since Cinder block isn’t highly flexible, its usage is usually prohibited.Concrete blocks can be utilized in any type of structure since it is much more sturdy.
Cinder block doesn’t have the required strength to withstand pressure and tension.Concrete blocks are durable building materials with great strength.
Cinder block is composed of cinder and concrete.Concrete block is made of cement, aggregates, and sometimes steel.

Also Read

AAC Blocks – Advantages & Disadvantages

How To Calculate No. Of Concrete Blocks In Wall

Why Cover Blocks Are Used In Reinforcement


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