Making MEP (M&E) Projects Profitable

In the world of MEP(M&E) projects,Guest Posting negotiating varied and unexpected challenges has almost become expected. These unexpected twists and turns can potentially affect profits. However, certain aspects of the MEP business process can be regulated to produce greater profitability. One such aspect is selecting the right MEP design service, with a viable option being MEP BIM coordination services or VDC (Virtual Design Coordination). From creating coordinated shop drawings to estimating solutions in the MEP installation sequence, comprehensive software packages can improve speed and accuracy, minimising costly mistakes and maximising profits. Interestingly, MEP projects can become even more profitable with the support of design outsourcing, especially qualified, experienced and well-trained MEP consultants from India.

Using pre-built, comprehensive databases can assist in deciding materials, labour and equipment required for any job. A combination of better planning/design with the use of BIM for virtual construction, together with the means to lower expenditure for design and drafting through outsourcing, can contribute to making MEP projects more profitable. Another way to control costs and increase profits is to invest in relevant technology for MEP design. To understand which software is relevant for MEP design services, here’s a look at the different services involved in each discipline and some of the preferred software:

MEP Design Services & Software Options

Mechanical Design:

1. Heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC)
2. Water supply/return distribution
3. Energy related – gas, oil, renewable and solar systems
4. Air conditioning load analysis

AutoCAD MEP software helps draft, design and document building systems and mechanical designs. Revit software creates detailed models across MEP disciplines. It enables the design of models for MEP fabrication and the coordination of fabrication and installation. Trimble PipeDesigner 3D is a detailing software for mechanical, piping and plumbing contractors. Trimble DuctDesigner 3D is a CAD software for sheet metal and HVAC contractors who want to detail duct quickly in an easy interface.

Electrical Design:

1. High voltage & low voltage electrical power distribution systems, generator & UPS systems
2. Lighting
3. IT, telecoms, security and lightning protection
4. Fire detection and activation alarm system
5. Riser and panel schedule
6. Lux level calculation and lighting

Autodesk’s AutoCAD Electrical software offers electrical CAD features, a symbols library and dedicated tools for automating electrical design. Autodesk Inventor 3D CAD software facilitates the integration of electrical designs into a digital model, so that data can be shared and designs can be integrated. MagiCAD Electrical for Revit also presents as a viable option. It has an efficient localised wire routing tool, tools for creating and editing switchboard schematics and a tool for assigning and controlling 2D symbols in coordination with 3D models.

Plumbing or Hydraulic (Public Health) Design:

1. Domestic water supply
2. Sanitation and waste water
3. Storm water drainage and rainwater harvesting

Design Master Plumbing is a plumbing and piping drafting and calculation software, that works in AutoCAD. Features include:

Intelligent Pipes – Each pipe section is linked to a database with all relevant information about that pipe and makes edits easily.

Automatic Pipe Sizing – Sizes are automatically assigned to pipes based on the flow. Each system is sized differently based on the type of pipe. Flow diversity is taken into account to determine the size of the pipe.

Isometric Diagrams – An isometric diagram can be created from the plan view pipe layout. Line breaks, p-traps, and other elements are drawn automatically.

Customisable Graphics – Pipeline types, layer names and colours, text fonts, pipe labels and other pipe graphics can be customised.

Fire Protection Design:

1. Sprinkler protection
2. Water and mist system
3. Dry riser and wet riser

Fire Sprinklers enable the design of high-quality fire sprinkler protection systems in Revit. It helps distribute sprinkler heads instantly product led growth throughout a linked Revit model with a specified clash tolerance function. The MEP Hangers feature allows instant large-scale insertion of hangers and supports the assembly of sprinkler system pipes. Cut Opening creates openings with fire safety components, where sprinkler system pipes intersect with walls, floors, roofs, ceilings, beams and columns.

After identification and investment in the right software, the next step would be to understand why BIM and MEP coordination are critical to profitability.

Quality standards in construction have improved dramatically over time and the focus is on reducing expenses and increasing profits by reducing or eliminating ‘waste’ and ‘duplication’. Traditionally, contractors hire sub-contractors to prepare shop drawings independently and then are faced with clashes on the site, necessitating on-site rework, changes and corrections. The emergence of BIM (building information modelling) for MEP coordination minimises the occurrence of such on-site clashes. BIM is an intelligent 3D model-based process that gives MEP professionals the tools to generate and manage digital representations of physical and functional characteristics of the engineering model.…