Unlike on the planet of human interactions, popularity is equated with quality on the planet of technology. The AEC industry is firmly supported by the technological advances of our age, and prefabricated housing is now increasingly popular. The emergence of prefabricated or modular construction in the housing industry is a reasonable and reliable means to fix the process of quality housing worldwide. Prefabricated housing, sometimes referred to as prefab homes, prefabs or modular homes, are manufactured off site in sections, from just bathrooms to entire floors, which can be transported, placed or assembled to make housing units. Prefabricated housing may be independent dwelling units for individual families (houses) or single units that have been stacked on top of one another to make multi-storey housing or apartment blocks. How useful prefabrication is in the housing sector, why it’s so and who are able to deliver services key to accurate prefabrication design are some of the things we will explore.
So, what’re prefabricated buildings?
Prefab buildings may be built from components (such as panels) office cabin, modules (in the case of entire modular homes, houses on wheels) or sections (parts of manufactured homes) constructed off site and transferred to the website when they’re prepared to be installed. A team of technical experts attach different services to the building layout. These may include double-storey homes and customised homes. Modular or prefabricated homes may be created in sections and then transported on site to be come up with within the construction process or installed. Whole rooms, such as bathroom pods or kitchens, may be created in a manufacturer setting as prefabricated units. Steel frames may be erected on site to’slot’in the prefabricated units or entire concrete foundations may be laid into the floor in readiness for the new home to arrive. Financing, construction and appraisals of the homes are carried out in the same way as for regular homes. Prefabricated houses may also be assembled on production assembly lines, which are transferred in complete sections or floors to the website, where these complete home units are connected floor by floor and then also connected to the location’s main water supply, sewage system and electrical lines.
How are they constructed?
They are usually constructed in factories which can be some distance from the particular housing site, indeed they are often in a different country. These purpose-designed factories effectively consist of assembly line environments, where different elements and trades come together at different stages of the assembly line to add the different components to the building. Starting with floors, walls and ceilings, the structure moves along for internal fixtures and MEP elements such as piping, plumbing, boilers, bathrooms and entire kitchen fittings, before being moved across to finishing areas such as glazing, doors, electrical fittings and even bathroom tiling. Once your house is assembled, it passes through final QA checks before being handed over to logistics teams for transport to its permanent site.
Plumbing and electrical lines are connected to the city’s water and electrical connections and the prefabricated sections are sealed. Prefabricated homes can have a number of rooms and be of different designs. These homes may be set on a permanent foundation, blending in seamlessly with other regularly constructed homes. Repairs on the homes are conducted by the real estate company involved in its sale.
Through the settling-in period of time, a prefabricated home’settles’into the location, and some cracking of the drywall could occur. Appliances that have been incorrectly installed may be repaired by changing the wiring or plumbing, and the ventilation, heating, cooling, plumbing and electrical systems may be properly installed by a set-up crew.
Among the driving forces behind a successfully assembled and reliably functioning prefabricated home is the effectiveness of its design. Increasingly, architects, engineers, contractors and trade contractors use BIM (Building Information Modelling) construction drawings sooner or later within DfMA (Design for Manufacture and Assembly). DfMA is a style procedure that groups the design for manufacture, or the ease with which parts will undoubtedly be created for an item, with the design for assembly, which identifies the ease with which parts will undoubtedly be assembled. DfMA helps the design team reduce manufacturing and assembly costs by identifying, analysing and removing waste and inefficiency from the product’s design. DfMA modelling and drawing is fast becoming synonymous with design for prefabrication.
Construction drawings, or shop drawings, graphically illustrate the details, data and specifications of a prefabricated design, contain details about the MEP (M&E) systems and include the details of prefabricated components. BIM technology is part of the larger virtual design and construction (VDC) procedure that helps find methods to challenges faced by subcontractors and designers before building prefabricated components in the factory.
Advances in technology have made it possible and indeed better outsource the delivery of BIM services such as modelling and drafting. Outsourced firms specialise in delivering drawings and models quickly, utilising the latest software, such as Autodesk 3ds Max, Autodesk Revit, Autodesk Navisworks and others, and by employing well-qualified experts. Modular construction drawings provided by these CAD drafting firms are usually accurate and error-free.
Prefabricated construction has reportedly been found in the world’s tallest building, the Burj Khalifa, in Dubai and in the construction of the prestigious Sydney Opera House.
Advantages of Prefabrication
- Faster completion of projects, therefore reducing costs
- Diverse uses – can be utilized to produce high-rises, single-storey construction, villas, townships, along with to produce ceiling slabs, terrace blocks, wall panels, columns, staircases, bathrooms, light fixtures, etc.
- Customisation – unique property specifications may be accommodated easily, leading to reduced expenses
- Durability – prefabrication in the structural facet of construction bolsters structural strength, sometimes helping to withstand earthquakes and other natural disasters. Concrete panels are manufactured with elements of top quality in a controlled factory environment and therefore last longer.
- Well suited for certain sectors that have repetitive design elements, such as student housing, educational institutions, healthcare facilities, prisons, police stations and senior housing.
- Increased and more efficient quality control in factory settings
- Safer and less stressful working environment for labourers in a manufacturer than on site, especially in crowded areas, as on-site dangers are eliminated for workers
- Less on-site space is needed to assembly components which have recently been assembled off site
- Less waste is generated during construction, since prefabricated component waste is removed at the factory and not transported to the website
- Competitive edge – allows flexibility in design decisions till the nth moment
- Saves space – housing may be built in cramped spaces in tight schedules and take up less space
Modular construction in the housing industry has expanded its scope for buyers and builders. Buyers have significantly more options to pick from and builders have significantly more build choices for construction, changing the entire construction landscape. Projects see MEP contractors use an increasing number of modular construction plans during collaboration. Prefabricated construction is cheaper and more green, since such buildings are better sealed against drafts and there is improved quality control systems in factories, thus ultimately causing improved insulation and better energy efficiency. This can ultimately benefit neighbourhoods and residential and commercial projects.
The many benefits of using prefabricated housing can only be enjoyed when the DfMA modelling and drawings are flawless. Because this demands lots of time and resources, an increasing number of Western firms are looking overseas for their prefabrication design services.
Great things about Outsourcing Prefab Design Services
- Cost reduction, since skilled labour and expenditure on resources overseas is significantly less expensive
- Utilization of advanced tools and technologies, such as AutoCAD and Revit, by experienced and well-qualified human resources
- Standardisation of drawings across projects, to ensure that MEP installations and other services are made easier
- 3D axonometric drawings of the entire construction project are generated, showing methods and means by which individual subcontractor components or systems may be put into the project
- Skilled draftsmen and other technical professionals work faster, maintain accuracy, provide complete audit trails with drawing references, approval records
- Faster turnaround time, since overseas firms employ ready and dedicated teams of trained personnel capable of working to constantly changing specifications, helping to accomplish projects on schedule
- Increased flexibility, as outsourcing allows Western firms to pick and choose services according to need. The flexibleness thus generated helps expand the business.
Outsourcing prefabrication design services is thus an increasingly popular option, and this method helps you to save time, increase productivity, ensure higher safety levels and increase profits. Using Revit, AutoCAD and other software to produce modular construction drawings and models helps provide high-quality prefabricated design support for Western firms in the industry.