How do you drill into brick?

How do you drill into brick? - Fix It Cape Town

Are you planning a home improvement project that involves drilling into brick? Whether you’re hanging a picture frame or installing shelves, drilling into brick requires some specialized techniques to ensure clean and precise holes. In this article, we will explore the process of drilling into brick, from selecting the right drill and drill bit to dealing with potential challenges. So, let’s get started!

Selecting the Right Tools

Before you begin drilling into brick, it’s important to select the right tools for the job. Here are a few things you need to consider:

  1. Drill: Choose a rotary hammer drill or an impact drill with hammer function. These drills are specifically designed for masonry work and provide the necessary power to penetrate brick.

  2. Drill Bits: Opt for masonry drill bits made from carbide or diamond. These bits are more durable and can withstand the hardness of brick. Ensure that you select the right size of the drill bit, depending on the diameter of the hole you want to create.

  3. Safety Equipment: Always wear safety goggles to protect your eyes from flying debris. Additionally, wearing a dust mask and ear protection is advisable to minimize the effects of dust and noise.

Step-by-Step Process for Drilling into Brick

Now that you have the right tools, let’s take a look at the step-by-step process of drilling into brick:

Step 1: Mark the Spot

Start by marking the spot where you want to drill the hole. Use a pencil or a marker to make a visible mark on the brick. This will act as your guide throughout the drilling process.

Step 2: Prepare the Drill

Insert the masonry drill bit into your drill. Make sure it is secure and properly tightened. If using a hammer drill, switch on the hammer function for added power.

Step 3: Position the Drill

Hold the drill perpendicular to the brick surface, aligning it with the mark you made earlier. Ensure that you have a firm grip on the drill and maintain a steady position throughout the drilling process.

Step 4: Start Drilling

Apply gentle pressure on the drill and slowly begin drilling into the brick. Let the drill do the work and avoid exerting excessive force, as it may damage both the brick and the drill bit. The drilling process may take some time, especially if the brick is particularly thick or hard.

Step 5: Remove Dust

After drilling for a while, periodically pull the drill out of the hole to remove accumulated dust. This will help keep the hole clean and prevent the drill bit from getting clogged.

Step 6: Complete the Hole

Continue drilling until you reach the desired depth. Once you have reached the target depth, slowly withdraw the drill from the hole, taking care not to damage the brick or the drilled hole.

Dealing with Potential Challenges

Drilling into brick can sometimes present some challenges. Here are a few potential issues you may face and how to overcome them:

1. Cracked Brick: If the brick starts cracking while drilling, stop immediately. This may indicate that the brick is weak or damaged. You can try drilling at a different spot or consult a professional for further advice.

2. Difficult Penetration: If you find it challenging to penetrate the brick, make sure you are using the correct drill bit. Applying more pressure or switching to a more powerful drill may also help in these situations.

3. Dust and Debris: Brick drilling can produce a significant amount of dust and debris. To minimize the dust, periodically withdraw the drill and clean out the hole. You can also use a vacuum or a brush to remove the dust while drilling.

4. Hollow Bricks: Hollow bricks have a cavity inside, which can make drilling more complicated. To drill into a hollow brick, ensure that you use a specific hollow core drill bit designed for this purpose. These specialized drill bits help to remove excess material from the hole.


Q: Can I use a regular drill to drill into brick?

A: While a regular drill may work for softer types of bricks, it is recommended to use a rotary hammer drill or an impact drill with a hammer function for best results.

Q: How do I determine the correct drill bit size for drilling into brick?

A: The drill bit size you need depends on the diameter of the hole you want to create. Measure the diameter and select the appropriate drill bit accordingly.

Q: How do I prevent the brick from cracking while drilling?

A: To minimize the risk of cracking, start drilling at a slow speed. Apply steady and even pressure, avoiding excessive force. If the brick starts cracking, stop immediately and reassess the situation.

Q: Can I reuse the holes drilled in brick?

A: It is possible to reuse drilled holes in brick, but it depends on the size and condition of the original hole. Fill the hole with an appropriate filler, such as epoxy or mortar, and redrill if necessary.


Drilling into brick can be a challenging task, but with the right tools and techniques, you can achieve clean and precise holes. Remember to select the correct drill and drill bit, mark the spot accurately, and take your time during the drilling process. Be prepared to deal with potential challenges such as cracking, difficult penetration, and dust. By following the step-by-step process outlined in this article and using the tips provided, you’ll be well-equipped to tackle any drilling task involving brick. Happy drilling!

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