Custom Sheet Metal Work For Hospital Construction
The construction of hospitals presents the usual array of design and building requirements, along with a selection of challenges that are unique to the creation of health care facilities. Construction professionals know the hospital must be designed and built to comply with applicable laws, regulations and standards while also meeting operational or aesthetic requirements imposed by design committees, boards of directors or benefactors who have contributed substantial sums to the building fund. The internal infrastructure must be able to accommodate features that range from simple lighting to complex and extremely expensive diagnostic and treatment equipment. In this environment, professional sheet metal workers apply their skills and knowledge of custom metalwork in support of creating a hospital where healing is aided by a well-designed, well-built and functional space.
Sheet metal workers’ duties involve designing, fabricating, installing, maintaining and repairing products that are made of metal sheets. The sheets can be relatively thin or thick enough to require specialized tools and equipment, such as high-pressure hydraulic presses, to bend and work the material. The items that sheet metal professionals install could be commercially manufactured products or items built from scratch as part of a program of custom metalwork. A common area where sheet metal workers apply their craft is in the creation of ductwork for heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) systems.
The duties of sheet metal workers often include the following tasks:
- Read and interpret project plans, blueprints and specifications to evaluate and select the types of sheet metal to be used.
- Measure, mark, or otherwise indicate dimensions of sheet metal pieces, lines where metal sheets should be cut, reference lines where other pieces or components should be aligned or points where holes should be drilled.
- Drill holes in metal sheets for attachment by screws, bolts, rivets or other fasteners.
- Inspect completed pieces for accuracy and, if necessary, use tools such as shears, hacksaws or other equipment to revise and finish pieces.
- Fabricate, alter or refit sheet-metal parts at construction sites.
- Seal, fasten and close seams, joints and gaps using welding or soldering equipment or fasteners such as bolts, screws or rivets.
- Lift, handle and maneuver sometimes large, heavy, unwieldy pieces of sheet metal; fit them into place; and fasten them down, with or without structural supports, as needed.
In some of the more up-to-date sheet metal facilities, sheet metal specialists will use computerized saws, presses, measuring devices and other equipment for fabrication work. Metalworkers in these advanced shops may also need to know how to program and troubleshoot this computerized equipment. Shops without computerized assistance use standard tapes, rulers and other devices to take measurements; machine tools to work pieces of sheet metal; and individual skill and knowledge to make calculations and decisions.
Specialty areas in the sheet metal industry include:
- Fabrication: Build ducts, gutters and other sheet-metal items.
- Installation: Install HVAC ductwork and sheet-metal products such as metal siding, roofs and gutters.
- Maintenance: Inspect, repair, clean and maintain ventilation systems and HVAC system ductwork.
- Testing and balancing: Test and inspect HVAC systems to make sure they are properly and efficiently distributing heated or cooled air through the ductwork.
In a hospital context, custom metalwork may include:
- Creating sheet metal countertops for food preparation or other sanitary purposes.
- Fabricating and installing wall panels that accommodate wiring, piping, monitoring equipment, indicators and other material in patient rooms, treatment areas or elsewhere in the facility.
- Fabricating and installing ductwork that will help maintain indoor temperatures at appropriate levels, plus contribute to humidity control and indoor air quality.
Our goal is to help educate our customers about Plumbing, HVACR, Fire Protection, and Alarm Systems in Mechanical, Commercial, and Residential settings. For more information about CAD technologies and to view projects we’ve worked on, visit our website!
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