Expert Witness & Arbitration Services

We have carried out innumerable investigations to litigation standards and many of our more prestigious clients are listed on our reference page. Our laboratories are able to carry out an on-site or building survey which includes taking samples, notes and a photographic record of the problems encountered to assess the extent of the defects. Samples, taken by our on-site testing team with strict reference to the relevant British or European Standards, are all tested in our laboratories with strict reference to the relevant British or European Standards. A detailed report can be produced highlighting the causes of the problem and whether the codes of practice were adhered too. Our laboratories offer a full arbitration service based upon the considered conclusions of this report. If arbitration does not achieve a satisfactory settlement then we will act as expert witness in court.

Investigations, Surveys & Reports

  • We carry out investigations into the causes of a variety of problems within the construction industry:-
  • Defects within construction materials
  • Defects due to bad workmanship
  • Defects due to specification errors
  • Contamination & chemical attack
  • Durability assessment
  • Recommendations for remedial repair
  • Specification requirements
  • Arbitration services
  • Act as court appointed independent testing laboratories
  • Full site survey, testing and reporting

Our investigations are carried out by a dedicated team who all have scientific backgrounds and many years experience within the construction industry. Our most senior member having over 40 years experience. The reports produced can be as simple as single results sheets or incorporate full considered conclusions and recommendations explaining fully what the results signify, how to interpret them, whether they conform to relevant codes of practice and what is the best course of action for remedial work or prevention of further problems. The reports produced can go into great detail with references to similar problems that we have investigated and how the remedial work was overseen, implemented and to its projected life expectancy. Investigations and reports can also be carried out to full litigation standards with the key members of the team being qualified to act as expert witness if so required.

On-Site Testing

  • Full site survey, testing and reporting
  • Site failure investigations
  • Screed Testing….read more >
  • Schmidt Hammer test (rebound)
  • BRE Screed Testing….read more >
  • Floor humidity tests to BS 8203:2001+A1:2009….read more >
  • Quality control
  • Sample drillings
  • Chloride testing….read more >
  • Presence of H.A.C….read more >
  • Chemical attack
  • Sulphate attack….read more >
  • Mastic Asphalt
  • Floor failures
  • Brickwork & Masonry
  • Aggregate grading
  • Concrete testing…read more >
  • Mortar testing….read more >
  • Levelling compounds
  • Construction failures in general

Our on-site testing team also have a scientific background so all tests and samples are taken with good laboratory practice in mind (no cross contamination, correct sample size and relevant sample location). Written notes are taken throughout with locations, descriptions and references being clearly marked with strict reference to all relevant British or European Standards. If litigation is then considered at a later date the testing procedure will stand the scrutiny of the courts.
Floor

Floor screed testing

We offer both physical on site testing and laboratory chemical analysis of the floor screed, we can also test the entire flooring including the sub base, structural slab, levelling screed, smoothing finish and final floor finish. Our experienced personnel are able to tailor the investigation on site should chemical analysis be more pertinent that the physical test.

Moisture content

Manchester Building & Testing Laboratories can determine moisture content of the screed and sub floor either on site by the relative
humidity testing method outlined to BS 8203:2001+A1:2009 or by samples taken back to our laboratories.
Sub floor construction moisture , is a common problem which can affect the final floor finish , the rule of thumb is that it takes one month
for each 25 mm of sub floor thickness.

BRE Screed testing

If the floor screed is breaking up, cratering or there is loss of adhesion form the resilient floor finish (vinyl, Amtico etc.) or rigid ceramic or
natural stone tiles to the screed, the failure could be a lack of compaction of the screed. One method of testing the screed is by using The
BRE Screed tester.
The BRE Drop hammer Test is an in situ crushing resistance (ISCR) test designed to test the strength and compaction of the screed as
outlined in BS8204-1:2003 + A1:2009 Annex E. ….Read more>

Laboratory analysis

Manchester Building and Testing Laboratories can carry out full chemical analysis of the screed in our own laboratories.

Construction Material Testing Service

  • Laboratory testing of construction materials
  • Mortar testing….read more >
  • Mix Proportions (cement: lime: sand) etc
  • Grading characteristics
  • Cement content
  • Admixture presence
  • Chemical attack
  • Sulphate attack….read more >
  • Concrete testing…read more >
  • Construction materials conformity to relevant British or European Standard (manufacturer/customer)
  • Mastic Asphalt
  • Levelling compounds
  • Proprietary Materials e.g. Epoxy – Polyurethane – Polyester – SBR – Acrylics etc.

Construction materials can be sent to our laboratories for testing, we can also obtain the samples from site with our on site testing team or
collect them from anywhere in the U.K. We can test all types of construction materials for their conformity to the relevant Codes of Practice
and British/European Standards. Accelerated durability tests, check for chemical attack, break down the components so that aggregate
grading characteristics, cement content, sulphate content (actual or as a percentage of the cement content), chloride content and presence of
admixtures etc. can be determined.