Testing and inspection services during construction help ensure that your project’s foundation and materials are of the highest quality. This includes observing earthwork and foundation construction, concrete and masonry inspections, spray-on fireproofing, wood construction observations and asphalt pavement evaluation and testing.
Special inspections verify that your building or structural features are constructed according to the plans and specifications approved by the design professional. These observations are compiled into the systems manual.
Whether you are constructing new buildings from scratch, adding on to existing structures, or renovating and updating existing projects, material testing and inspections ensure that the materials used will perform as expected once construction is complete. This type of quality assurance work is not something that should be left to an afterthought—it’s just as important as the sketches and floorplans that architects take time to create.
Material testing is the process by which an experienced team analyzes and tests raw or processed materials to determine their quality and operating performance before they are used in a construction project. This allows the contractor to make sure that the materials will meet building codes and specifications, as well as provide valuable insight into potential problems down the road.
There are two main types of material testing in the construction industry: field and laboratory testing. Each one has its own specific standards and processes, but both are designed to help ensure that the construction project is constructed with the correct materials for the area in which it will be built.
Laboratory testing is when the samples taken from a construction site are brought back to a lab for further analysis. This process is often used when the results from field testing are inconclusive or require further investigation.
For example, if a building is being constructed with concrete, the samples from the job site will be taken to the lab to be tested for strength, consistency and quality. This test will allow the experts to determine if there are any issues with the concrete that may cause future problems. This is vital information that will allow the construction process to move forward without any delays or complications. In addition, the data will also help to confirm that the concrete meets all required building code requirements and is structurally sound. This is important because if a structure is not constructed with the proper materials, it could potentially collapse or fall apart later on down the road. Ultimately, the cost of hiring a professional to conduct field and laboratory testing throughout the construction process is well worth it in order to avoid costly mistakes down the line.
The design details that architects spend so much time creating must be executed well to produce a quality product. PBK’s construction services team provides boots on the ground to ensure the end-to-end construction process is executed as designed. From 2 a.m. concrete pours to pre-installation meetings to coordinating with consultants on site, this group is instrumental in ensuring projects are completed correctly from start to finish.
Laboratory testing refers to tests performed in a laboratory to determine the characteristics of various materials or construction components, either before they are placed on-site or after installation. These lab tests help to ensure that the materials will not negatively affect the project site or endanger anyone within the structure. Typical lab tests include soils, concrete, masonry, wood, spray applied fireproofing, steel and structural masonry testing.
Whether it is an in-depth soils investigation, or a more shallow exploration to identify the underlying material, all samples must be sent to a laboratory for analysis. Laboratory testing includes both classification and shear strength test results, as well as geotechnical and environmental data. The tests performed are dependent on the type of exploration performed and can vary greatly in complexity, equipment used, and number of technicians available.
Our staff is certified as an ICC Soils Special Inspector, Reinforced Concrete Special Inspector, Structural Masonry Special Inspector, Steel and Structural Welding Special Inspector and Spray Applied Fireproofing Special Inspector, giving our team the skills and experience to successfully execute your projects. In addition to being able to provide these specialized inspections, our team has access to two proprietary electronic reporting systems that allow us to deliver field and laboratory test reports quickly. Our unique systems also give our clients the ability to download and print their own copies, which is extremely helpful for keeping projects on schedule.
Building Envelope Testing (BET) is the process of testing the air, water and thermal envelopes in both new and existing buildings. These tests can be conducted as part of a regulatory requirement, or they can be specified as a design specification to meet a specific performance goal. BET can be performed on a single window or entire multi-story building and is often done as a follow up to construction inspections to verify that the installation was completed as designed.
Field testing is the process of evaluating and verifying a product or installation out in the real world. It helps ensure that the finished product complies with industry standards and design criteria, and is installed properly. This is often required on new construction projects and renovations of existing buildings. Performing this type of testing in the field helps avoid costly repairs and replacements down the road.
During the field testing phase, professionals take samples at various locations on a project site. These samples are then taken back to the lab for further analysis. The lab then compares the results to those of the original samples to see if any changes in materials or installation are required. This is an important step in ensuring that the final building meets all of the original specifications, and is built to last.
The most common field testing service is soil sampling. This is done to evaluate the quality of earth materials used in various types of projects, including roadways and bridges. In addition, field testing can be used to check the condition of asphalt pavements and concrete. Other services that are performed by construction testing specialists include steel and concrete field density tests, soil compaction inspections, and subgrade proof rolling inspections.
Building Envelope Testing (BET) is another field test that is conducted to measure a building’s performance and sustainability. BET measures air, water, and thermal leakage to help assess a building’s performance. It is performed on both new and existing construction, and helps determine if the building meets or exceeds the original design criteria.
Software testing is also carried out in the field, often referred to as beta testing. In the beta phase, the software is made available to a select group of users, known as testers, who use it in a variety of environments to provide feedback on how the software works and functions. This allows developers to identify potential issues, and improve the software before its official release.
Finally, Construction Services also conducts installation field observations and checklists to monitor the construction of a project. This helps to communicate any problems or issues that may arise during the construction phase to the CxP team, and also ensures that these observations are documented and included in the commissioning report.
The designs that architects take their time to create must be executed well in order to produce a quality product. During construction, the design goes far beyond sketches and floorplans and becomes a physical building that must be able to withstand the elements and provide safety for its inhabitants. This is where testing and inspections become essential. Whether it is field or laboratory testing, these services are designed to ensure that the materials used in construction are safe and durable, easy to maintain and sustainable, do not damage the project site or endanger anyone or anything that is within the perimeter of the project, and meet all the applicable building codes and standards.
Inspections help bridge the gap between the design and construction phases of a project by ensuring that the work performed on-site conforms to the project documents and engineering standards. Onsite inspections are critical in preventing construction errors and addressing unforeseen circumstance solutions to keep projects on schedule. Isett’s experienced team of geotechnical engineers, geologists and ICC/ACI certified inspectors deliver a full range of testing and inspections including earthwork, shallow and deep foundation observations, concrete testing, wood construction observation, structural masonry, spray on fireproofing and asphalt pavement evaluation and testing.
Construction inspections can be conducted at any stage of a project. It is recommended that they be performed regularly throughout the construction process and after each major phase of the project. This way, issues can be addressed immediately and proactively rather than after the project is complete.
Some of the most common types of construction inspections include:
A basement inspection examines a basement for signs of water damage, structural problems or mold. A roof inspection examines the condition of a roof, looks for leaks and identifies any worn or missing shingles. A grading inspection is an examination of the slope of the ground around the house to make sure rainwater and floodwater flow away from the home, rather than toward it. An electrical inspection examines wiring, circuit breaker and outlets for any potential hazards or issues.