How MEP Engineering and Building Information Modeling Reduce Cost of Construction?

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Let us get into the basics of MEP Engineering and BIM first, and then into the depth to explore how BIM and MEP jointly mitigates the cost of construction.

Introduction to MEP Engineering

MEP engineering aims to plan, develop, and control the basic but necessary systems of a building, like water pipelines, electricity connections, plumbing lines and supply, air conditioning systems, etc.

The engineering trades involved in MEP play significant roles in every stage of construction.


What is ‘MEP’?

‘MEP’ is a term for the trades involved in the AEC industry, i.e., Mechanical, Electrical, and Plumbing. Jointly, these trades serve as the brain of a structure.

The “creature comfort” elements of a structure are the responsibility of MEP. Whether it is a single-story house or a 50-story skyscraper, they make a structure habitable and enjoyable.

The heating and cooling systems contribute to the overall comfort of a building’s mechanical design. These devices enable us to occupy buildings in all weather and temperature ranges.

A structure’s electrical system maintains the lighting, our devices, and other systems. Plans and designs for architectural lighting are essential to the electrical engineering process.

In the same context, think about plumbing as well. Where would we be today without it? We survive because of water. The plumbing system supplies fresh water for drinking, cleaning, and other uses. Also, they securely remove sanitary and storm-water runoff.


How MEP Engineering and BIM Reduce Costs?

  • By Saving Time

The use of BIM does not end with project commissioning.

A virtual reality building model is instrumental in managing property and scheduling maintenance operations. In particular, it enables a preventive maintenance approach instead of a reactive approach – fixing problems before they occur is far simpler than repairing the damage when building system components break down.

Remember that NYC projects must also undergo a lengthy approval procedure with the Department of Buildings. BIM software also hastens project clearance because it can spot design flaws immediately.

  • BIM Reduces Change Orders During the Construction Process

One of the primary reasons why project costs rise is- Due to the change orders.

The change orders can also result in missed deadlines and postpone the completion of buildings when alterations are made to a virtual model rather than an actual building, the use of BIM for MEP engineering aids in identifying the need for change orders during the design process.

Editing a building model is quicker and significantly less expensive than dismantling and reassembling actual installations. Design edition requires engineering time, whereas project alterations need material and labor expenditures.

One or more parties participating in a construction project incur unexpected costs due to change orders. Depending on the contract terms, additional expenses may be borne by the owner, the contractor, or both.

BIM, being a powerful project tracking technology as well, helps supervising engineers keep the project within budget and on time. Since BIM software can simulate the scheduled construction process and cash flow, finding discrepancies is simple.


Also read: How is BIM effective for data center construction?



  • BIM Simplifies Maintenance and Reduces its Costs

Since BIM contains data on MEP components, it stays updated with routine inspections or changes to building systems.

Using a virtual building model makes it possible to keep tabs on the status of essential parts and plan for their replacement well in advance.

Buildings that already exist can adopt BIM, even if it wasn’t adopted initially. Only the engineering work is necessary to assess the existing state of the property and produce a comparable virtual model. However, managing the building becomes much easier once this stage is over.

Also, the usage of BIM does not stop at project completion. A virtual reality building model is quite helpful when maintaining the building and planning maintenance work is concerned.

In particular, it allows for a proactive maintenance strategy instead of a reactive one since solving issues before they arise is far easier than repairing damage after building system components fail.


Benefits of MEP Engineering

  • It controls carbon dioxide emissions

In current construction projects, MEP focuses on sustainable building. Furthermore, whether you’re in the design stage or reconstructing an existing structure, MEP firms can manage all needs and requirements to boost the energy efficiency of your building.

Furthermore, because companies emit greenhouse gases from cooling, heating, lighting, and energy, MEP employs effective HVAC frameworks, reduces water consumption, and embraces dynamic building designs.

  • Utilizes sustainable energy

Commercial buildings’ higher energy demands pressure the power grid, especially during peak hours. MEP may reduce the amount of electricity a facility generates by using solar energy, allowing businesses to develop a limitless resource to generate their energy.

  • Conserves water usage

Water is cheap but is often wasted, and leakage accounts for much of this waste. Thankfully, MEP can improve water efficiency through simple strategies such as touch-free taps and low-flow toilets before moving on to more complex approaches.


What is BIM?

Building Information Modelling (BIM) integrates people, technology, and processes to enhance building and construction results.

It is the most recent development in the building industry, and it refers to the collaborative process of designing, building, and running a building utilizing a single cohesive system of 3D models rather than separate design drawings. BIM integrates people and technology to reduce time and costs and enhance efficiency in construction projects such as skyscrapers, hospitals, office complexes, and residential structures.

BIM is more than just a piece of software or a 3D model. It includes not only the model parts but also the massive volumes of information that comprise the project and the process of transferring that information to the other parties involved.

Whereas previous workflows relied on multiple file formats and disconnected processes that quickly became out of sync when changes were made, BIM workflows allow for a more dynamic and synchronized approach to project management.


Also read: What is BIM & Its Benefits in the AEC Industry


Why We Use BIM?

BIM is used to increase the efficiency of the construction process, eliminate waste during construction, and improve building quality and efficiency.

The notion of “Failing Fast” has been championed by several sophisticated industries. That is, experimenting and trying new ideas, even if it means failure the first time, leads to another iteration and eventual success. This principle is only applicable in the high-stakes world of building and construction.

The only method to “Fail Fast” is to plan construction before any machinery touches the ground. It is impossible to experiment with bricks and mortar while surviving in an atmosphere characterized by time and financial strain, tight deadlines, vast and dispersed work teams, and massive fiscal borrowing.

With conventional building processes, some knowledge from the previous phase is lost when teams shift from one project phase to another. With BIM, data is gathered digitally and made accessible to anybody who needs it whenever they need it.

By adopting BIM, an ongoing information flow is created. Digital records of every stage of the building process are kept, including initial planning and design, construction, operation, Maintenance, and ultimate recycling. This creates new opportunities for increased collaboration, accuracy, efficiency, and coordination among the stakeholders participating in the construction. Our day is one of extensive automation. Every company process has been digitalized, and data is used to inform every choice.

The World Economic Forum has pronounced this a “Fourth Industrial Revolution,” where connected machines, feeding from data, will exponentially transform processes in every industry.

How MEP Engineering and Building Information Modeling Reduce Cost of Construction?
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