17 Nov Shrink Wrap Scaffolding – How To Choose An Installer
Looking to shrink wrap scaffolding? You have two choices; Do it yourself or find a sub-contractor. Some companies are ‘shrink wrap specialists’, others such as scaffolding companies provide shrink wrapping as part of a range of services. Whichever you choose, here are 6 ways to help you find the right supplier for you.
WHERE ARE THEY BASED?
Most ‘specialist’ shrinkwrap companies in particular will claim to offer a ‘UK wide’ shrink wrap service but depending on their ‘base’ location, shrink wrap installation teams may have to travel significant distances. So what? Well, travelling costs in terms of the team’s time and fuel costs. They might also require hotels or overnight accomodation. The closer an installation company is, the fresher the team will be when they arrive and less likely to make mistakes.
Location is also important if any issues develop with the shrink wrap sheeting that need a return visit. A company that is centrally located or located locally can return to site much faster.
HOW CAN THEY PROVE THEIR INSTALLERS ARE COMPETENT?
All scaffold shrink wrap installers should hold the general CSCS card that proves they have reached a basic standard of health & safety awareness, and additional cards such as IPAF for the use of MEWPS are also common. However, there is no nationally accredited dedicated ‘card sheme’ for the installation of shrink wrap sheeting. This means you must get proof that the company you are using has a proper induction scheme for new staff and written proof that each team member has been assessed as competent in all the elements of shrink wrap sheeting.
DO THEY HAVE FLAME RETARDANT CERTIFICATION FOR THEIR SHRINK WRAP?
Scaffolding shrink wrap must be flame retardant. In the UK there are two key ‘standards’ to be aware of – the basic European standard test (EN13501) which is referenced by building regulations and the much more extensive LPS1207 and LPS1215 standards which are managed by the BRE. The main difference between the LPS1207 / LPS1215 and EN13501 is that whilst EN13501 is a one off ‘test’, the LPS is a ‘scheme’ whereby the quality and flame retardant performance of a shrink wrap film is independently tested and verified by a third party company each year. Whichever film you are using, if the film is flame retardant, it should be clearly printed on the shrink film and you should obtain the flame retardant certification for the film and check it’s validity.
DO THAY HAVE ANY TESTIMONIALS?
OK, we all know that testimonials can sometimes be a bit slick and ‘salesy’. However, why not do a bit of research on social media channels such as Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn? Hopefully you should find mentions by other customers of completed shrink wrap jobs (not just sales messages put out by the company you are considering!)
SPECIALIST OR GENERALIST?
Many companies, mostly scaffolders, may offer shrink wrapping to their clients as part of a range of services. The benefits of using a scaffolding company to provide a shrink wrap service is that they are normally close to their clients and if they know how to shrink wrap, there is a good chance that they will set up the scaffolding in the best way possible (nice and flush structure for example) which should result in a great looking job.
Specialist companies exclusively provide shrink wrap installation services. These teams will be carrying out shrink wrap installation work 24/7 which should lead to genuine mastery, however, as mentioned, if they are travelling long distances then costs may be higher.
WHAT DO THEY DO WHEN SOMETHING GOES WRONG?
Follow points 1-5 above and you will certainly maximise your chance of a smooth job with no problems. However, as we all know, sometimes things go wrong and unfortunately the reaction of your shrink wrap supplier can be difficult to test in advance. Do they have a telephone that is answered by a human being outside of office hours? Do they have a senior management team who are ‘close to the action’ and understand construction problems?
We have found from experience that the best way to deal with a problem is ‘head on’. Very often that means a supervisor or member of the management team getting out on to site to meet everyone involved and working out a resolution. For a more minor problem it certainly means a senior manager always being available on the telephone to talk to a customer.
This article is designed to give you just a few pointers to help you choose a shrink wrap installation company. If you would like to discuss your requirements in more detail then why not give us a call on +44 (0)1477 53222 or email email@example.com. We look forward to hearing from you.