"FAQ's Modular Construction Method"
Frequently Asked Questions Regarding Modular Construction Methods
What are the advantages of modular construction methods?
Relocate and reuse the modular room -
100% reusable components. The number one reason for buying modular systems is the ability to take the building down and relocate it. This feature benefits the small firm that leases because the modular rooms always remain their asset, when it is time to move, the modular rooms can go with them. This feature also benefits the larger company. Should their needs change and the modular room would be better suited elsewhere then it can be moved and they never lose their original investment.
Redesign - adapt to new requirements.
Companies grow, needs change and so can the modular room. Whether you need more space or need to change your current modular room configuration your not locked into your original design. All panels are interchangeable and can be assembled to fit any current need. The non-progressive post design provides the ability to swap or replace individual panels without disturbing adjacent panels. For example, if a solid wall panel now requires a door it can be switched out for a door panel in a matter of minutes.
Stronger construction - suited for commercial and industrial environments.
Many rooms today are built using drywall and studs, leaving unsupported cavities that can be punctured easily. Modular
systems use much stronger materials and utilize an important design feature, fully supported wall substrates using either insulated polystyrene or honeycomb cores, this gives the walls true impact resistance for long useful life. In addition the availability of steel facings adds even more strength.
Better sound deadening than conventional rooms - Modular systems create a comfortable work area even in the loudest manufacturing plants. Installing an industrial modular room is more than just putting up walls, it involves utilizing a system that will meet the specific requirements of the plant. One of the most important requirements is sound control, without the proper sound control a room could be rendered useless.
Modular systems utilize sound controlled construction that is acoustically designed to out perform any typical conventional construction. The more extreme the noise the more
modular systems are better qualified. Florida Modular Office & Partition Systems can design a structure for any sound problem.
Abbreviated construction scheduling - So you can get back to business.
Installs up to 75% faster than stick-built. Depending on building size weeks of sub contractors and inspections can put any company behind schedule and this can translate directly into money lost. The faster you are back to normal the faster you get back to business.
Reduces Labor Costs by up to 50% - This could be a very conservative figure... considering the installation speed of
modular systems and the reduction in trades necessary to build, you could find this savings tremendous. It takes only one crew to assemble a
modular system, and several trades like glazers, painters, carpenters etc. to build conventionally... the larger the project, the more the savings.
Fewer plant disruptions - minimize productivity loss
that can cause expensive loss of productivity. All construction even modular causes plant disruption, however the longer it takes to complete a project the more disruption you get. A serious evaluation of costs would include this often over looked expense, most people are amazed how fast these costs add up. For an estimate, multiply the number of people in the area of construction by just 10 minutes of distractions, then multiply that by the number of days it takes to complete the project, from this you can determine the number of hours lost, now multiply this by the average cost per labor hour. The loss of productivity is real and expensive.
Less dust and debris to contend with - lower cost
sealing off areas, and detailed cleaning of equipment all can be expensive for the average industry, but if a company is involved in food processing or clean environments the costs to shut down and handle this are enormous.
Modular systems are quality inspected before they ship and are manufactured to exact standards. The finished product is never questionable, a clear point that conventional construction can not make. How good is conventional construction? It depends on the work crew. The truth is that most construction, if not closely watched can turn into a disaster. A buyer must always be on the watch for shortcuts and sub standard work, this is never the case with
modular systems and the proof of the quality is in the warranty. Reputable
manufacturers typically warranty their modular systems for 5 - 10 years.
Costs less than conventional - Compare any project fairly, each room is to have identical specifications and each is to perform to the same requirements and
modular systems will always cost less. Add to this the other benefits previously listed and the much faster depreciation allowed for modular construction and you will see why the popularity of
modular systems has grown tremendously and why many companies are so convinced
that they no longer consider conventional construction for their construction
Lower lease termination cost - With many leasing companies now
requiring the leased space to be returned to original condition upon termination
of the lease agreement modular systems that can be sold used or relocated can
substantially reduce the lease termination fees associated with leased
Are permits required for modular systems?
Permit requirements for modular systems construction vary from state to
state and city to city. You should always consult with your local building
department when proceeding with commercial construction projects as to the
specific requirements for permits and code compliance in your area. This
should not be left to third party advice for interpretation of local building
code requirements. Most reputable modular building systems manufacturers will
have third party testing and certification of their specific systems by
certified testing agents, U.L., FM Global, or ASTM to assure all components are
safe and code compliant for construction. Final code compliance and
acceptance before ordering any modular system should be by local building
department officials to assure a code compliant installation.
Who installs modular construction systems?
Modular systems installations offered by third party installation companies are
typically a non-turnkey installation of the modular buildings systems components
only. Code compliance, unloading and staging, final electrical, mechanical,
plumbing, cleaning, and finish flooring is typically left to the owner. Full
turnkey modular systems installations should be by licensed and insured general
contractors experienced in the local code compliance and permitting requirements
for your local municipality. At minimum all installation companies should be
able to furnish local licensing, liability insurance, workman compensation
insurance, and knowledge of the modular systems they are installing.
Are all modular building systems pre-engineered?
Reputable modular systems manufacturers work with pre-engineered
components and assemblies on specific size buildings. They are supplied with a
assembly or shop drawings that is only pertinent to the modular systems
assembly. Additional engineering in the form of engineered drawings, signed and
sealed by an engineer licensed in your specific state, are typically
required by local building department regulations. Other additional drawings for
electrical, mechanical, plumbing, structural, or fire suppression may be
required by local building department code requirements.
Are all modular systems fire rated?
Modular systems are typically available in Class "A" , Class "C" or 1
Hour fire rated assemblies. The availability in different fire ratings is to be
code compliant with local fire code regulations. If unsure of the fire rating
code requirement for your particular installation it would be best to consult
with your local fire code compliance building department officials. All claims
to fire ratings should be substantiated by test results from a certified third
party testing agency.
Can modular systems be load bearing?
Stand alone modular systems can be load bearing for second story or
roof storage loads. All modular systems purchased as load bearing assemblies
should be accompanied with structurally engineered signed and sealed drawings.
Stairways must be OSHA approved assemblies with proper thread spacing and rail
heights. Additional structural engineering should be completed on the existing
flooring system to determine the need or requirement for additional footings,
piers, or structural reinforcement to carry the loads placed on them by the
modular systems. Depending on the size and intended use of the second story, the
American Disability Act(ADA) may require the installation of a ADA approved
wheelchair lift system or elevator.
What are the advantages of modular electrical wiring systems?
Modular systems are fully relocatable and reconfigurable to meet the
ever changing environment of modern manufacturing and office facilities.
Limiting the use of hardwire type systems for electrical, fire sprinklers
telecommunications, and control systems further enhances the relocation of
modular systems by allowing the utility systems to be relocated with the same
ease. Modular electrical systems are available in low voltage, 120 volt and 240
volt capacities and allow for relocation without the need for costly
re-piping of utility systems. They also further reduce the primary
installation cost with the speed and flexibility of their installation. All
systems should be U.L. rated and reviewed, signed and sealed by a local
electrical engineer to meet most local code compliance regulations.
Are modular systems more sustainable then conventionally constructed
Modular systems construction with its relocatable, reusable, and higher
recycling advantages results in greener construction benefiting owners and
Better building performance -
Quality controlled off-site production means modular systems are
manufactured to more consistently rigorous tolerances than conventional
site-based building methods.
Reduced energy consumption -
Up to 67 per cent less energy is required to produce a modular building compared to an equivalent traditionally built project.
Enhanced thermal efficiency
A composite panel construction ensures continuity of insulation across
the building envelope, ensuring there are no cavities associated with loose-fill
insulation. This design feature reduces the risk of condensation, which can
significantly reduce the thermal effectiveness of a building.
Reduced noise and pollution - There are up to 90 per cent
fewer vehicle movements with modular systems which mean less environmental pollution because of reduced vehicle mileage. Noise and dust levels on site are also
Less waste -
Material usage in the factory is reduced by up to 90 per cent by the careful design and procurement of materials, reducing the amount of waste generated both on and off site.
Greater recyclability -
All waste generated in the off-site manufacturing process is
Construction predictability - Research has shown that only 63
per cent of traditional building projects are completed on time and only 49 per
cent to the agreed contract sum. Costly time and budget overruns are a major concern among construction clients and when it comes to meeting those tight deadlines you need a supplier that can deliver
Speed of construction -
Build times can be reduced by up to 50 per cent using modular building methods, leading to proportionate savings in site costs and an earlier return on investment.
improved health and safety - Factory-based construction offers an
intrinsically safer working environment than a conventional construction
"FAQ's Modular Cleanroom Construction"
Less Particulate Entrapment, Lower Microbial Limits, Less Maintenance Scheduling
Industries in the biotechnology, medical device manufacturing, optics,
nanotechnology, semi-conductor, electronics, and other high quality
manufacturing environments have benefited greatly from the design
advancements in modular cleanroom construction methods.
What are the advantages of modular cleanroom systems construction?
Clean build installation methods - with prefinished and
prefabricated installations the release of particulates or
violate organic compounds(VOC) into existing environments is non exsistant
resulting in easier to achieve clean build construction.
Less particulate entrapment - with high gloss factory applied finishes
of a less porous nature than conventional paints particulate entrapment on wall,
ceiling, or door surfaces is minimized. VOC contamination of existing processes
is negated and accomplished without costly construction protocols utilizing
prefinished modular components.
Lower microbial limits - are generated by less porous final finishes
and closer gap tolerances, and anti microbial finishes in modular systems
Less maintenance requirements - with high gloss hardened finishes,
higher impact resistant and higher resistance to cleanroom cleaning agents and
UV lighting sources vinyl, steel and aluminum modular cleanroom systems
maintenance requirements are greatly reduced resulting in lower operational cost
and less downtime.
Flush surface designs - control the horizontal ledges and surfaces
typical in conventional construction further reducing horizontal areas of
particulate entrapment and microbial growth. This also reduces cleaning
schedules resulting in further operational cost savings.
Panelized ceiling systems - further reduce gaps, connections, and
uneven surfaces resulting in less particulate entrapment and less maintenance
and cleaning scheduling.
Regulatory agency compliant - harder less porous surfaces and finishes
assist in reducing and controlling particulate entrapment and microbial growth
assisting in meeting limits established by USP 797, FDA, cGMP, USDA, and NSF
Easier renovations - to existing cleanrooms can be accomplished without
disturbing existing process operations. Interchangeable components allow for
changes to process flow and clean zones without disturbing adjacent clean zones.
What are the phases involved in designing and building a cleanroom?
Preconstruction - involves selection of the building or area of the
existing facility the cleanroom will be constructed in. The available capacities
of the existing electrical system, chilled water system, sanitary drains, or
other utility support systems that the new cleanroom will require. This phase
and final selection can significantly affect cleanroom construction cost.
Cleanroom basis of design - determines and list the requirements for
ISO 14644 cleanliness classifications, regulatory agents(cGMP, FDA, USP 797)
requirements, required temperature and relative humidity tolerances, cleanroom
process flow plan, cleanroom floor plan, cleanroom process equipment layout,
cleanroom process equipment specifications, and preliminary design requirements.
Budgetary cost analysis - list preliminary cleanroom construction cost
estimates to include architectural, engineering, structural, mechanical,
electrical, process piping, flooring, certification, and validation of all
Architectural engineering - develops final design and engineered
drawings to meet cleanroom basis of design documentation specifications.
Final design build cost analysis - based on final architectural
engineered drawings, building code compliance and regulatory agent standards.
Materials procurement - determines material and process equipment lead
times and construction scheduling.
Clean build construction - prepares and sanitizes cleanroom
construction site, establishes air quality control of construction site,
installation of structural, mechanical, electrical, process piping, flooring
systems, control systems, monitoring systems, and process equipment under clean
build construction protocols.
Certification and testing - certifies airflow, air velocities,
particulate levels, HEPA filter installation, temperature and relative humidity
tolerances, cleanroom zone pressurization, microbial counts, and lighting levels
to ISO standards.
Equipment validation - provides installation qualification(IQ) and operational
qualification(OQ) reports on cleanroom air handling systems, electrical systems,
and process equipment systems to regulatory agent specifications.
Are cleanrooms considered equipment or capital improvement?
Many modular systems can be deprecated as equipment in 7 years as
opposed to capital improvement depreciation at 32 years. Consult with your tax
preparation accountant to determine your depreciation advantages.
typically see them as capital improvements governed by the same code compliance
regulations as any commercial construction.
How much will my energy cost be to operate my cleanroom?
Cleanrooms are high energy consumers because of the increased volume of
air that must be treated by the air handling systems and the process equipment
required by the cleanroom function. Designing and engineering cleanrooms with
initial cost as the priority will not allow for advanced controls and air
handling systems that will reduce energy consumption. The use of variable speed
motors and controls that allow you to utilize night time set back, control power
and operating times of air handling and process equipment, and allow areas not
in use to operate at reduced levels can dramatically reduce energy consumption.
How often will I need to replace my HEPA filtration filters?
A HEPA filter can last three to five years or more in a standard cleanroom environment. Life of the HEPA also depends on ambient conditions and maintenance
of the pre-filters. Since airflow capacity decreases and static pressure increases over time, HEPA filters actually become more efficient as the filter loads.
The filter should be changed once it has reached its capacity. For example, if a HEPA unit is set to for 90 ft/min (0.45 m/sec) on the setting, but is only
achieving 70 ft/min (0.35 m/sec) on , then the HEPA filter should be changed. In dirtier environments, the pre-filter may need to be changed as often as every
one to three months. Frequency will depend on ambient conditions.
Initial cost on HEPA filtration systems can vary greatly with advanced
options to lower HEPA filter maintenance cost and extend the life of the HEPA
filtration filters. Options for pre-filters with higher MERV ratings and options
for room side replaceable HEPA filter media can further reduce filter
maintenance and extend filter life spans.
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