Report Surveys & Investigations
In the UK we use the “Burland Scale” to classify cracking to buildings. Cracking can look concerning and the Burland scale gives a guidance.
Extract from The Institution of Structural Engineers “Subsidence of Low-Rise Buildings”
Table 6.2 Classification of visible damage to walls with particular reference to type of repair, and rectification consideration
Investigations into existing buildings, their defects and current condition is our practice’s core activity, along with building design. With our extensive knowledge of construction techniques combined with continuous refurbishment projects, we are perfectly placed to understand problems.
There are numerous types of investigations and surveys completed.
Building Defect Surveys
Croft Structural Engineers is able to survey all building materials commonly found.
Barclays Bank Surveyors (Atis Real) utilise our knowledge to undertake structural surveys. Typically, these are on occasions where their Building Surveyors require our Structural expertise.
Croft Structural Engineers is able to organise and undertake a variety of investigations. Concrete suffers from the polluted environment and numerous tests can be undertaken to determine its current suitability.
“Regent Street Syndrome” is often seen. This is where steelwork in 1920 buildings corrode, forcing the expansive force to crack the masonry facades.
Croft Structural Engineers are happy to undertake an appraisal to support a mortgage or simply for peace of mind.
We are often called at the last minute, just days before exchange. It is our aim to attend the site and return the survey with 4 days of appointment.
Our reports are completed by a Chartered Engineer and the format is specific to the property. We do not roll out a list of generic defects with a few lines of specific information at the bottom of the page. Every item will be about the property and its defects. Where possible, we will suggest the repairs required along with our anticipated costs.
Subsidence & Movement Surveys
All buildings require maintenance to ensure their longevity. London has an ageing building stock which has suffered over the years.
By far our most common call to the practice is domestic clients calling about concerns of movement to their house. It is easy for us to arrange for an Engineer to visit the property and provide an opinion on the cause of the movement.
For a more detailed inspection Croft has now started to employ 3D laser surveys. The surveys are known as Cloud Point Surveys, and can survey the external envelope of a building in a morning and provide details of how much the walls are leaning and bowing. They are so much quicker than erecting a scaffold and so much more accurate than a plumb bob in the wind.
Failed drains can cause unseen havoc to foundations. To check and inspect existing drawings Croft can arrange drainage surveys to be undertaken. After the survey you will provided with a written report and a DVD of your drains (one not to put on during Saturday movie night with your friends!).
Within Croft Structural Engineers, staff have the technical ability to undertake building and land surveys. It is not one of the practice’s core services, but clients can have the comfort of knowing that, when required, we can complete such work.
A client on a Design and Build scheme called upon us after numerous attempts to set the building out had failed. We also had problems getting the building to fit on the site until we informed the owner that the neighbours had moved their garden onto his land!
Often, Croft Structural Engineers are called in at short notice to inspect dangerous structures.
Our large knowledge base of historic buildings allows us to quickly assess buildings and determine what further investigations and works are required.
With our knowledge in Geotechnics & Geophysics, Croft has the capability to provide specifications and arrange soil investigations. These investigations are carried out by specialist contractors who can complete a range of services including:
- Hydrology, Soil strengths & parameters
- Geophysical ground radar, Chemical analysis & Contamination testing.
With our work on basements we have found it necessary to develop our knowledge on Hydrogeology. This is the flow of water below ground. We now commonly provide reports on the expected hydrogeology and expected water flows below ground and how a new development may impact upon that.
The reports are signed and produced by a Chartered Hyrdogeologist.