Terms of the Trade: Mortar vs Concrete

While the uninformed may think mortar and concrete are interchangeable, there are differences in their makeup and applications. Both mortar and concrete are composed of sand, cement, and water, but concrete also has rock chips and gravel in the mix. Concrete uses a lower water to cement ratio than mortar, which means it's not suitable for the bonding efforts that mortar is known for such as adhering together building materials like brick. Conversely, concrete is used for structural and support applications such as supporting walls and building foundations.