Somers Engineering Ltd. sister company Ecoconcrete Ltd introduced the Beam & Block Concrete Flooring System for individuals to achieve self-build at affordable cost.
The Beam and Block flooring system consists of precast beams and blocks. The system reduces construction costs whilst maintaining client’s expectations and quality of works. The system is faster, cost effective, requires minimum labor and uses no shuttering when compared to the traditional slab. The cost of the slab varies per square meter depending on the usage of the floor and delivery location as there is a transport cost involved.
The construction preliminaries have an indirect cost on any project. By using the beam and block flooring system, the following items are eliminated and therefore making the construction cheaper compared to the conventional way of casting slabs, Storage cost, Security and space costs on site, Time costs as the system is fast and easy to install, Labour costs, Theft on site and Material wastage. These indirect costs are usually overlooked by the Quantity surveyors in their Bill of Quantities and therefore not allowing the contractor/client to assess costs which, whilst they do form a part of any of the package of works required by the contract.
A flat roof in Beam and Block slab system is cheaper than pitched timber roof. It gives the owner an extra usage area at the top level and prevent leakages which occurs along the valleys/ridges of a pitched timber/steel roof. The flat roof can be used as a drying yard or a storage area. The septic tank/underground water tank top slabs are also economical in Beam & Block slab system, as it saves the owner the challenges of erecting and demolishing the shutters in the tanks.
Black cotton soil tends to soak water during the rainy season and expand and shrink during the dry season. This expansion and shrinkage create up and down movements on the ground floor slab, resulting to cracks. To prevent this cracking, the black cotton soils must be excavated, and the area filled with compacted hardcore and the ground floor cast on this platform. Excavation and disposal of these massive soil layers and then backfilling the area with hardcore and compacting is an expensive exercise.
This is a construction product which varies on each project because each project is unique and the product elements design changes according to our Engineer designing it, therefore a system designed for a certain site cannot be used on another site. The beams generally have been designed in accordance with the Code of Practice BS 8110:1997 and are checked for compliance on each specific job undertaken. The product requires no approval by either NCA or KEBS.
Benefits of beam and block flooring
- Easy to handle, quick to install.
- Simple all-weather form of construction.
- Provides an immediate working platform.
- Draught proof, rot proof and fire resistant.
- Good thermal insulation.
- Minimum site preparation.
- No compaction or back-fill.
- No need of shuttering for the slab.
- Reduced theft of material from site.
- No need of laying reinforcement for the slab.
- Client can install system by unskilled labour.