This article explains when, where, and how to use cleanout holes. In reinforced masonry construction, cleanout holes are the openings through which mortar droppings and other debris are removed and a wall is inspected prior to high-lift grouting. Any debris remaining in the cells or columns to be grouted would impede grout flow and the bonding of the grout to the rebar, the block or brick, and the bottom of the cells. This bonding is necessary for the masonry units, grout, and steel to act as a homogeneous system that is strong in compression, tension, and shear:The grout transfers loads from the masonry units to the steel. If a wall is to be grouted solid, cleanouts must be no more than 32 inches apart. For hollow-unit walls that will be solidly grouted, it is recommended that the first course consist of inverted bond beam units to allow for cleaning mortar droppings or debris from the foundation and between cleanouts. When a wall is to be partially grouted, only the cells--or in a double-wythe wall, the confined spaces into which the rebar will be inserted--need to be grouted. In partially grouted walls, cleanouts (and rebar) must be no more than 48 inches apart, or spaced as required by the specifications. Located at the bottom course of the space to be grouted, cleanout holes can be created in several ways: A unit can be left out, the whole face shell of a hollow unit can be sawed off, or a portion of a face shell can be removed. Cleanouts usually are positioned on the exterior face of the wall, but occasionally they are positioned on the interior face (when it is easier to access them). To facilitate cleaning of the wall, it is advisable to put some sand or polyethylene film at the bottom of the cell to prevent mortar droppings from bonding to the foundation. Mortar that projects more than « inch into the cell should be removed so that the grout fills the cavity fully. The wall can be cleaned in several ways.