BELOW GRADE BRICK VENEERS Q: Can brick veneers extend below grade?
A: Good question. Brick and other masonry materials are porous and ideally should remain above grade. If your brick veneer comes in contact with the earth, your wall may experience unsightly stains caused by “rising damp” — the wicking of moisture and impurities.
However, we realize some designers do not want to “see” bare foundation walls around their new buildings. In this case, you should install through-wall flashing with a drip edge to stop rising damp.
Remember, your flashing material will now need to be supported so it does not sag and create an internal gutter. We recommend grouting the space under the flashing for the dual purpose of flashing support and added stability for the sub-grade wall.
Resource: International Masonry Institute – IMI – www.imiweb.org