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Tips for Assesing Building Quality

For architects, discerning the caliber and precision of their designed structures, particularly throughout the construction phase, is paramount. This diligence ensures the adherence to planned safety, functionality, and aesthetics. Robust construction quality guarantees structural longevity, while meticulousness shapes the overall user experience and visual appeal. Here are insights to help scrutinize building quality.


Floor


To assess the flatness of the floor effectively, employ a metal coin. Rather than rolling the coins, experiment by flicking them across the floor, akin to the carrom coin game. A smooth glide without impediment indicates the floor is in satisfactory condition.


For identifying hollow ceramics, utilize a wooden stick to tap each ceramic individually, discerning sound. Alternatively, employ a small ball or marble; upon throwing it onto the ceramic, observe the sound. Dull sounds imply an imperfect ceramic adhesive cement mixture, potentially leading to future damage.


Similarly, gauge the slope of the bathroom floor using the aforementioned tools. Adequate floor slope is crucial to prevent water accumulation. Roll a small ball or marble within the bathroom to ascertain the floor's slope – it should naturally move towards the floor drain if the slope is appropriately adjusted.


Wall


The next tip for checking the quality of the building is on the walls. To determine the level of evenness and neatness of the plaster and wall coverings, use a flashlight or lamp and hold it parallel to the wall. Pay attention to shadows or light reflections on the walls. Areas that are uneven or have defects will show imperfections when illuminated by light.


To check the quality of the wall plaster, tap the wall lightly with a hammer and listen to the sound it makes. A strong wall will produce a loud sound, while a weak or weak wall will produce a dull sound.


To check the straightness of the bricks vertically, use a rope tied with a weight. The vertically perpendicular wall will be parallel to the string. Meanwhile, to find out the humidity level of the wall, use a humidity meter. This is to help you identify excess moisture in the walls, which can reduce their strength. Check whether there are significant changes in the humidity levels in different parts of the wall.


Ceiling


To assess the quality and neatness of the ceiling, the method is the same as for the walls. Use a flashlight or lamp to check the neatness of the ceiling. Pay attention to shadows or light reflections on the ceiling. Areas that are uneven or have defects will show imperfections when illuminated by light. This will be especially visible when the ceiling lights are turned on, especially in the joint area between the gypsum.


Doors and Windows


The quality and neatness of the installation of doors and windows can be determined by opening and closing the doors and windows several times to check that they move smoothly and that there is no unwanted friction. You can also use coins to check. Place coins along the cracks in doors or windows. Ideally, the gap between the leaf and the frame is the same size. If the coin is jammed in several places, it indicates that the doors and windows are not precise enough.


Check that windows and doors are functioning properly and that there are no significant gaps around them that could cause air or water leaks. Also check whether the sealant or insulation material around the doors and windows has been applied properly and tightly. Make sure there are no visually visible gaps or voids.


Plumbing


For plumbing installations, you can check with the naked eye. Make sure there are no water leaks or seepage in pipes, faucets, or other plumbing systems. Also ensure that the slope of the dirty water pipe and sewer pipe is correct according to standards. The easiest way is to drain it with water. Insert a bucket of water from the end of the pipe. Ideally, the volume of water coming out of the other side of the pipe should be one bucket too.


To measure the pressure from each tap outlet, use a water pressure gauge. The pressure of each tap outlet must be the same to ensure that all tap outlets get an even water supply.


Electricity


Plug electrical devices into sockets and test switches to make sure everything is working properly. Or use a test pen and multimeter to find out the voltage. Make sure there are no short circuits or problems with the socket or switch. Make sure the sockets and switches are installed properly, not loose, and located at the appropriate height.


Make sure that all cables are covered with conduit pipes, whether embedded in walls or above the ceiling. Also ensure that the connections between cables are neat. Connections between cables must be covered with electrical insulation, and welding. For electrical branches, close using T-Dus.


Concrete Roof


To check the slope of the concrete roof, the trick is the same as for the floor. A good concrete roof, the slope must be towards the roof drain. You can also drain the water to find out the slope level of the roof and see whether there are parts that can become puddles of water or not. Over time, standing water on the concrete floor will cause seepage on the underside and this will require difficult repairs.


Roof


To check for roof leaks, flood the roof with water. The best way is to use a hose. If you find it troublesome, you can wait for the rainy season to arrive to check the roof for leaks. If there is a leak, repair it immediately.


If you use a tile roof covering, check whether the connection between the roof and the tiles is perfect or not. If using a metal roof, check the joints between the sheets and also the screws. Make sure the screw part does not leak. Also check the roof flashing connections, make sure there are no gaps or parts that could cause leaks.


By applying the simple tricks above, you can find out the level of neatness and quality of the building. This trick is actually not only for architects, but is also useful for you as a home owner and contractor to ensure that the building is built to good standards and quality. See you in the next article. Bye!


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