Don’t cut corners with steel reinforcing

Veka has urged fabricators against ‘cutting corners’ on reinforcing as manufacturers come under pressure to reduce costs.

Paul Kennington, technical director at Veka, said: “The first thing to understand is that not all reinforcing is equal. To the naked eye, two pieces of steel may look identical, but there could be considerable differences – each will have their own unique characteristics including differing grades and differing densities.”

According to Veka, deviating from the production specification supplied by your systems house means that all testing becomes invalidated, making it necessary to re-assess and re-test in order to comply with relevant standards, including the UKCA Marking.

Veka adds that this process could cost ‘tens of thousands of pounds per system’ – so is not cost effective or productive. Veka says this also applies to U-Values where using a different steel could be the difference between meeting this calculation or not.

Paul continued: “Even if it appears alike geometrically, it is not guaranteed to perform the same; while even the slightest deviations in size, shape, or gauge can have a major effect on functionality. Coatings also need to be considered. BS7412 states that reinforcements should be galvanised to Z275. I would advise that your stock control ensures that incoming steel meets this guidance, meters can be bought to measure this.”