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3 Common Problems with Traditional MEP Detailing

Avoid the costs of rework by identifying these 3 problems with traditional design and detailing processes.

Creating fabrication-ready models is no easy task.

As a detailer who works on mechanical, electrical, or plumbing projects, you’re well-versed in overcoming the challenges typical to your trade. You may have seen first-hand how accurate and efficient detailing work can ease the entire process for your teammates, improving project areas such as fabrication, estimating, and project management.

But you may also know how the traditional MEP detailing process can be full of inefficiencies and other problems.

Therefore, make sure you’re set up for success by identifying the three most common problems in the traditional design and detailing process. In this article, you’ll discover how the right MEP detailing software that works on top of your design platform, such as Revit or AutoCAD, can increase the detail and accuracy of your models, facilitate collaboration across teams, and ensure your work helps the project stay on-schedule and on-budget.

Problem #1: Your models aren’t detailed enough

Conceptual design and engineering models can only go so far. Created in a design platform such as Revit or AutoCAD, these models often need more detail to efficiently and accurately plan the work and guarantee constructability.

Additionally, if your models contain DIY content or custom objects, then you could end up spending hours searching for the actual manufacturer components needed to place orders or revise the model as needed. This takes away from the time you could be spending on other essential tasks, such as clash detection. And if materials are ordered or fabricated before clash detection is performed, you could end up with unusable components or installations that must be ripped and replaced later, creating delays and rework. Because these risks exist, you’re also less likely to take advantage of prefabrication, missing out on the cost savings it delivers.

If you’re spending time creating DIY content, it could be costing you. Read this article to learn why.

Problem #2: Lack of coordination between teams

Construction teams often look to work in more connected ways to improve communication and coordination. But if you and your teammates aren’t working from a single model, this lack of coordination becomes much more evident. With a fabrication-ready model, you won’t have an effective way of communicating changes before and during construction to ensure everyone is on the same page.

Meanwhile, if models also lack the detail for you to accurately plan and perform your work, then other teams and stakeholders are left to interpret the design themselves. The probability that their changes in the field might not get communicated is high, which can create a domino effect of other problems.

Problem #3: Missed clashes and costly mistakes

With a highly detailed, fabrication-ready model, you’re set up for a range of positive outcomes, such as detecting clashes early in the process. And if you can identify clashes before the build begins, you can avoid costly rework later to remedy errors in fabrication and construction.

This becomes exacerbated when you don’t have an effective way to collaborate with subcontractors, who could be making changes in the field that aren’t being communicated (but still impacting others’ work), which often results in expensive fixes later. In addition to the direct costs incurred, your company will also feel the negative impacts on scheduling and productivity. Project performance and delivery will ultimately suffer, not to mention your profitability on each project.

Learn more about the benefits of MEP detailing software

If you’ve been detailing for some time, you’ve likely experienced the many frustrations of working with overly conceptual models, communicating changes to siloed teams, and addressing problems after construction is underway.

An improved detailing process, on the other hand, ensures that your models are accurate and fabrication-ready. And when you produce fabrication-ready models that all project stakeholders can access, you’re able to:

  • Reduce rework
  • Facilitate better communication and collaboration
  • Achieve greater productivity
  • Increase profitability

To learn more about improving the detailing process with the right technology, check out this eBook, “7 essential capabilities of MEP detailing software.