Compressed Earth Block: Everything You Need to Know

The building is an essentiality in the lives of humans. This is facilitated by the need to have a roof over one’s head. Yet, the processes of erecting a house don’t come cheap. Most times, contractors or builders may find it difficult to choose the best material.

That is where compressed earth blocks come in. In the course of this guide, we will look at the benefits it has to offer. Besides, you will discover the method of forming and using them as building materials.

For further comprehension, we have broken down the guide into sections. Here are the things you will learn at the end of reading the information:

We have over the years, discovered the growing trend of using Ecological Bricks or Compressed Earth Blocks as building materials. In the same regard, only a few manufacturers have a good grasp of the functionalities.

Hence, the guide we present would help you gain insight into their uses. Join us as we take a review of Compressed Earth Blocks (C.E.B) and the relevance in today’s construction.

What is Compressed Earth Block (C.E.B) or Ecological Brick?

The first point to note is that it’s a form of building material that has been in existence for many decades. The earliest use dates back to Egypt, where it was used to erect strong buildings. So, what does it mean?

A Compressed Earth Block, which is also called modular soil-cement or ecological brick is a building material that is extracted from damp soil. It is then compressed at high pressure to form different types of blocks.

This method of creating cement bricks is effective for many reasons. For instance, it is reputed for the environmental factor that cuts down on the emission of carbon dioxide because of the reduction in fuel consumption.

Now, many construction companies and builders use Compressed Earth Blocks because of cost-effectiveness and durability.

More about compressed earth blocks, visit the Wikipedia.

How to Choose Soils or Clay work for Compressed Earth Blocks?

Ideally, the production of the block follows certain processes. One of such processes is the use of certain clay or soils. This would help in bringing forth the best blocks or bricks at the end of the pressing.

The problem therein is on how to choose the best soils or clay that would match the expected Compressed Earth Block (C.E.B). You should note that not every soil would fit into the description.

“Sandy clay soil”

You would recall that soil is made up of four (4) main properties. These are Biosphere (Life), Lithosphere (Earth), Hydrosphere (Water), and Atmosphere (Air). These are essential properties to look for when choosing a soil or clay for Compressed Earth Block.

“Sandy Soil”

Read further to discover some of the tips:

  • The first type of soil to choose is sandy soil. It has a gritty texture and is non-sticky. The output demands little cohesion and ensures that there is no shrinkage at the end.
  • Gravelly Soil is also recommended because of the very rough texture.
  • You may also want to go for silty soil. Although it has a significant shrinkage, it makes up for that with the smooth texture.

The Ratio for Clay Compressed Earth Blocks?

Choosing the type of soil or clay is one part of the building process. Deciding on the ratio is another. Ideally, the balance should be made on the premise of the behavior of the soils in the presence of water.

“Sandy Soil”

Also, note that the mixture would take place in the clay brick making machine. Hence, you should be sure that you get the ratio correctly before processing.

These tips would help you balance the ratio of clay for compressed earth blocks:

  • The basic soil containing  Sand of about 65-75% and Fines (Silt + Clay) of 25%
  • On the other hand, you can use 30% silt and 33% clay on a weight basis for the sand of 33%

There is yet another aspect of the soil grading composition limits. This is based on the formation of the soil.

For instance, you can use Sand (80%), Clay (10%), and Silt (10%0 for an Ideal Virgin Soil. A Good Virgin Soil demands Clay (10-20%), Sand (65-80%), and Silt (0-20%). It is also tenable to use Sand (60-80%), Clay (10-25%), and Silt (0-25%) on a Possible Virgin Soil.

The earth blocks ratio: soil:cement=10:1/ soil:cement=12:1/ soil:cement=14:1. (According to the raw materials).

Guide for Soil Selection

Haven noted the ratios that help in producing the block; let us look at other helpful tips. The rule is that you should determine the plasticity index to be certain that the soil would be suitable for block production.

The first point is that the soil or clay must be free of organic materials. It must also contain sufficient clay to bind the block. Third, the soil should not contain harmful quantities of salt.

As a rule, you need to ensure that the soil with high clay and silt content (usually above 35-40%) should be blended with sandy soil.

As we said, except for organic soil (black soil), any other soil can be used. If the soil contains little or no sand, you can add sand. The ratio is 5 earth buckets+5 sand buckets+1cement bucket.

“Organic Soil”

The applications of these ratios depend on the properties of the soil and the type of blocks or bricks you want to make.

Why Use CBE for Construction? Advantages of Compressed Earth Blocks?

As earlier noted, the use of this block has been around for decades. The relevance in today’s construction sphere is because of the innate potentials it has to offer to the manufacturing industry.

So, why should Compressed Earth Blocks (CEB) be used for constructions, including buildings and residential apartments?

  • Creating Wealth from Natural Resources

First, there is a growing need to use natural resources. This is imperative because of the high cost of cement and other new materials for building. By repositioning this, builders can now use soil and clay to erect buildings.

  • Suitable for Large Housing or Infrastructure Programs

Certain laws and regulations guide the development of structures and buildings all over the world. Compressed Earth Blocks play a great role in this regard by conforming to the standard sizes and quality requirements of a building.

  • Flexibility

Another use case is the flexibility of usage that comes with Compressed Earth Blocks. They are feasible for use in both the rural and urban contexts. They can also be applied to small-scale, medium, and large-scale semi-industrial and industrial use cases.

How to Cure the Compressed Earth Blocks?

A great deal of precision is needed when putting final changes to the blocks. After mixing the soil/clay with other ingredients in the clay brick maker, the machine would then bring out the blocks.

The next step is to cure the Compressed Earth Blocks ahead of the application in a building or construction site. These are the steps to cure the blocks:

  • Keep in a Humid Environment

After the blocks have been discharged from the clay brick molding machine, you would then proceed to keep it in a humid environment. The stabilized blocks should be left for about seven (7) days in that state.

  • Semi-Dry Surface

While the blocks are being cured, ensure that the surface doesn’t dry out completely. If allowed to do so, the blocks would suffer shrinkage cracks.

  • Shelter from the Weather

The weather tends to have some effects on the blocks. As a rule, the Compressed Earth Blocks (CEB) must be sheltered from the wind and direct sunlight.

It is also ideal to keep the blocks in Relative Humidity (RH) approaching 100%. This can be achieved by covering the blocks with waterproof plastic sheets.

  • Temperature

The temperature used for the curing also matters. For instance, Compressed Earth Blocks that are cured for seven (7) days at a temperature of 40°C would be 2 times stronger than others cured at a temperature of 20°C.

The rule is simple: blocks that are cured at higher temperatures would be stronger than others cured at lower temperatures. You can use a black plastic sheeting to increase the temperature, thereby increasing the strength of the blocks.

  • Drying the Compressed Earth Blocks

The next step after curing the blocks is to dry them. The process would take about fourteen (14) days. During this time, water must be allowed to evaporate. The fraction of the clay should also be allowed to shrink.

As a preventive measure, the exposure of the blocks to direct sunlight and wind must be reduced. This would help to prevent immediate shrinkage.

How to make Compressed Earth Blocks – The Working Principle of Clay Brick Machine?

It can be an easy process to make Compressed Earth Blocks if you have the idea. Ideally, the process differs from rammed earth because the latter pours earth into large formworks. Compressed Earth Blocks also differ from mud bricks because the bricks are compressed and solidified using chemical changes.

Instead, the process of making Compressed Earth Blocks takes a different procedure. The blocks are mixed alongside earth and fed into the clay brick making machine. They would then be cured and allowed to dry. The next step is to assemble the blocks onto walls using standard masonry techniques.

Here is a detailed guide for making compressed earth blocks:

  • Sift the Clay

The first step is to sift the earth. The soil is the most important material in earth block construction.

Before manufacturing, the Clay content must be drawn from the soil. The soil would then be signed through a 3/8 wire mesh.

  • Stabilize the Clay

The second step is to increase the stability of the clay. This is essential because helps prevent much concentration of clay in the block. This tends to lead to a crack on the block.

Many builders depend on Portland cement to stabilize the clay. Or lime can be used and it should be fresh.

  • Compress the Mixture

After getting the above two steps done, you can then proceed to compress the mixture. This is simply done by pressing the earth soil or mixture with the earth block making machine.

The mixture would then be fed into a high-pressure hydraulic ram for processing.

  • Let the Earth Block Cure

The mixture that had been compressed needs to dry. As noted earlier, the curing process should not enable total drying of the blocks.

The earth can be used almost immediately but it is important to allow the blocks to shrink slightly as they dry. This would be left to get cured.

The essence of the month-long curing process is to strengthen the blocks.

  • Stack the Blocks

Once the blocks are cured, you can then proceed to make a slurry by using clay and lime mortar.

The mason would then apply a complete layer below the blocks. The slurry that had been mixed to a milkshake consistency would be used to bond the blocks

The Type of Compressed Earth Block Machine?

It is important to note that the blocks come in different forms. It is ideal for manufacturers to define their building or construction needs before choosing the blocks.

On the other hand, there are specific clay making machines that are designed to fit into a range of Compressed Earth Blocks. Thus, you should consider their properties and functionalities to help you make an informed decision.

  • Manual

The machines are meant to be mobile to help manufacturers to make bricks from the earth. The manual format helps the users to feed the materials into the machine. This could come in handy for effective regulation.

Yet, manufacturers should be ready to attend to it. The manual Compressed Earth Blocks machines fit into a range of purposes, including interlocking brick making. It is also feasible in the production of stabilized clay mud.

  • Semi-Automatic

As the name implies, this type of Compressed Earth Blocks machines doubles as manual and automatic. It can be used in cement interlocking and a variety of other brick making concepts.

  • Automatic Clay Brick Making Machine

Machines in this category are automated and don’t necessarily need the intervention of human inputs. All there is to it is feeding the materials into the machine, configuring it, and setting it in motion.

Note: The uses of these Compressed Earth Blocks machines vary by the type of bricks or blocks expected at the end.  It has been asserted that the manual versions are common in developing worlds while the automated are in use in developed worlds.

The Advantages of Compressed Earth Block Making Machine?

It is a fact that Compressed Earth Blocks are water-resistant, long-lasting, and stable. The machine also plays a vital role in the entire process.

Before you begin looking for clay brick making machine for sale, it is important to discover the advantages. Below are some of the advantages of Compressed Earth Block machines:

  • Efficient Pressing

The machine ensures that the blocks are adequately pressed.  That way, it is certain that the blocks would consistently be made of uniform size.

  • Short Drying Time

When compared to human output, compressed block making machine helps to facilitate the drying time. Hence, the production rate tends to be higher, which would lead to the production of thousands of blocks per day.

  • Inexpensive

Compressed Earth Block machines can be operated either by hand or directly powered. Either of the models is cheaper than traditional methods. They are also faster, which saves you further costs.

  • Eco-Friendly

In tandem with the dispositions of Compressed Earth Blocks, the machines on their part are built in line with the requirements of green energy. That way, you can be sure that the machines would not put the environment under threat.

compressed bricks machine

The Buying Guide of Compressed Earth Block Machine/Ecological Brick Machine?

It could be a dilemma of sorts when looking to buy a compressed earth block machine. Nevertheless, knowledge of the following criteria would help you arrive at an informed decision:

earth block machine

  • Price

You should consider the soil brick making machine price when looking for the machine to buy.

Ideally, the clay brick making machine cost helps the buyer(s) to decide for or against a particular soil block machine.

  • Manufacturer

Certain suppliers or manufacturers are reputed for the durability of their mud block making machine. When looking for brick making machine, you can be sure that LONTTO is the brand to trust.

LONTTO ranks as one of the leading soil block making machine manufacturers. The company has a variety of machines, including red bricks machine, and clay interlocking brick making machine.

  • Type of Machine

Are you looking for an automatic clay brick manufacturing plant or do you want to be in full control?

The choice of a compressed earth block machine varies by the needs of the end-user. Hence, define your construction needs and choice the machine that fits into it.

Choose Lontto as Your CEB Machine Supplier

Compressed Earth Blocks (CEB) ensure that buildings are erected in good time. The environmental-friendliness of the blocks makes it easy to adapt to a variety of needs.

LONTTO is your trusted clay brick machine manufacturers. Our range of products would certainly fit into your construction needs. They are also efficient and affordable. Do contact us today to purchase your favorite clay brick making machine.

What Are the Materials of Compressed Earth Block (CEB)?

The compressed earth block can be also named earth press brick, or compressed soil block. The main raw materials of earth soil brick are soil, clay, sand, and a small amount of Portland cement.

The soil earth block can be made into compressed stabilized earth block (CSEB) or stabilized earth block (SEB) if cement is used as a binder.

You can use an earth press block machine with a hydraulic pressure of 21MPA to make CESB, the original soil volume can be compressed by half.

ceb house

What Is Rammed Earth Wall?

The Rammed earth wall refers to a wall built with rammed earth. Ancient Chinese palaces and city walls were all made of rammed earth, using semi-dry and wet sand, gravel, and clay mixtures as the main raw materials, a small amount of cement as a stabilizer, and filling in the formwork and tamping in layers.

The wall has good integrity and high bearing capacity.


What Is Adobe Brick And Stabilized Mud Block?

Adobe brick is a mixture of earth, organic materials (straw and manure) and water, and is formed in a mold. The selected soil contains sand, clay and mud. The role of straw is the adhesive of adobe brick.

Usually can also be mud brick (mudbrick), adobe bricks are one of the earliest building materials.


What is clay brick?

Clay bricks are also called fired bricks. Clay bricks use clay (including shale, coal gangue and other powders) as the main raw material, which is made by crushing, molding, drying and high-temperature firing. It can be made into hollow and solid burned clay bricks.


How Strong Are Compressed Earth Blocks?

The strength of the compressed earth block can reach 3Mpa, and the hydraulic earth block machine can produce higher strength CEB.

At the same time, if more Portland cement is used in the raw materials, the strength of CSEB can reach 4-5Mpa.

Why Would You Want to Build With Csebs Rather Than Concrete Blocks?

To be clear, the cost of concrete bricks is far greater than the cost of CEBs, and the amount of cement required for the raw materials of concrete bricks is greater than that of CEB.

And the main raw material of CEB is under your feet, the soil can be seen everywhere. There is almost no cost

What Are The Benefits of Compressed Earth Block House?

  • First of all, for more environmentally sustainable buildings, we use soil as the main raw material. At the same time, a very small amount of cement is used, which greatly reduces the cost of building a house.
  • CEB has a better heat insulation effect than concrete brick house. In a hot environment, the room stays cool for longer.
  • The house built by CEB can adjust the humidity and heat of the room naturally and improve the indoor air quality.

What Is the Difference Between an Unstabilized CEB And An Stabilized Compressed Earth Block?

The raw materials of unstabilized compressed earth block are mainly clay, sand, aggregate, slit. It does not contain cement, so the waterproof performance is not good.

If you use unstabilized CEB to build a wall, you need to paint the surface of the wall with lime, plaster or waterproof paint.

The compressed stabilized earth block is made by mixing 92% sandy soil and 8% cement. So, they have excellent waterproof performance.

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