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Cladding & Facade Inspections

Inspections for Fire Safety

There is a rising concern for fire risks in multi-storey buildings. Recent reports suggest that external cladding systems quickly spread fire, causing loss of lives and massive property damage.

We don’t want that to happen to your building.

As professional cladding inspectors, we are here to prevent fire. Our job is to inspect cladding and ensure that it does not act as a catalyst to fire. We concentrate our inspection on the entire cladding system rather than focus only on external materials.

We offer inspections and bespoke written reports on your building – not just on the types of materials used, but also the construction quality of fire barriers and other passive fire measures included in the facade construction. Our reports are easy to understand, clear, detailed and show all construction components.

Material testing can be arranged on samples that we remove from site for all types of cladding, and we are also able to supply all access equipment for client hassle-free inspections.

Testing/Inspection Strategy

It is generally the case that where metallic/non-metallic cladding has been identified on high rise buildings, the cladding system has never been tested to confirm whether the materials are non-combustible. Therefore, it is important that the testing and inspections concentrate on the entire cladding system and not just the external material.

Services

  • Carry out site inspections by fire engineers to identify areas for cladding testing.
  • Carry out site inspections by fire engineers to identify the areas of the cladding system requiring inspection (inc. external cladding, insulation and supporting structure including cavity barriers).
  • Arrange for cladding samples to be tested by an independent testing company [ISO 1716 (class A2) – the appropriate standard for a building > 18m].
  • Carry out site inspections by fire engineers to inspect the cladding system.
  • A comprehensive report would be produced to confirm our finding and related advice.

Surveys & Inspections

  • Stonework for deterioration, spalling and corrosion of fixings.
  • Brickwork, looking for cracks, slips or settlement issues.
  • Cavities and obscure/hidden fixings.
  • External wall tiles for deterioration and signs of ageing.
  • Mastics and sealants.
  • Steel/metal structures looking for signs of corrosion.

Cladding is a combination of different components attached to a building’s primary structure to form its external surfaces. Although building contractors used cladding to make a building’s external, it does not necessarily contribute to its stability.

Cladding perform a variety of functions, such as:

  • Creating a controlled and safe internal environment.
  • Providing privacy and security.
  • Protecting the building from various external conditions.
  • Preventing fire from spreading.
  • Providing thermal insulation.
  • Preventing transmission of sound.
  • Offering opening for daylight, ventilation, and access.
  • Generating airtight building envelope.
  • Creating an external facade.

The various types of cladding include:

  • Brick slips
  • Sandwich panels
  • uPVC
  • Tensile fabric coverings
  • Curtain wailing
  • Metal profile cladding
  • Patent glazing
  • Timber cladding
  • Shakes and shingles
  • Rainscreen
  • Tile hanging

Every contractor needs to follow the building codes to stay away from fraudulent cases. The Ministry for Housing, Communities and Local Government came up with the Advice Note 14 in December 2018 that imposed several regulations on cladding.

The Advice Note 14 states that all building owners should review the design of the external wall systems. They should also inspect the composition and installation of these systems to avoid fire risks. Those who don’t have expertise in this field can professionals.

We can provide a thorough inspection of all your external wall systems and check the installation of cladding and facades. The Advice Note 14 also states that building owners should get a certification of the inspection once the check is complete.

This is why building cladding inspections and cladding facade inspections are incredibly important in ensuring safety.