Mechanical, electrical and plumbing (MEP) services include several 'plug and play' technologies. These are pre-installed at the factory for plant-rooms, with pipework, cable management and ductwork for building services in-situ. After this, they are integrated into a multi-services module mounted in the ceiling, under the floor or in-service risers. Mechanical ducting or pipework systems/modules are often combined with electrical service distribution.
These units are packaged or skid-mounted as pre-assembled units, pre-finished in the factory for straightforward mains connection onsite.
MEP modules (sometimes called packaged plant rooms) and riser modules are created from high-quality materials and can accommodate a range of building services in one simple unit. MEP modules benefit greatly from the use of BIM technology to minimise reworking and redesign of services, snagging and defects. MEP modules simplify a complex installation of services units minimise labour onsite and provide far greater quality control.
MEP modules can also come in a flexible flatpack design that can be helpful in tight construction sites and where there are logistical obstacles. By breaking the largest components into easily assembled modules, the parts can be easily transported and installed in tight and hard to reach locations. They also have the added benefit of minimal disruption to other trades on site.
Moving this kind of work offsite means potentially dangerous practices such as working at height and hot works in restricted spaces are vastly reduced. As with all offsite manufacture, this creates less waste, less noise and efficient material delivery to site, thereby reducing programme times.
Taking MEP services offsite also means early testing, commissioning and programme assurances can be secured.