Roland K. opens the envelope and pulls out a multi-page stack of paper, and his heart almost stops. The offer for securing the facade of his current construction project is much higher than he’d previously calculated in the tender. The experienced architect grabs his cell phone and calls the planner, who confirms - much to his dismay - that the costs for the planned rope access technology are accurate. They’re so high because the planning for fall protection only took place when the project was already well underway, and at that point a cost-effective solution is no longer viable without majorly disrupting the aesthetics of the building. Our architect Roland K. here could have avoided this sinking feeling that comes with discovering unanticipated costs. Because with good and early planning, cost-effective solutions for fall protection on your facade can be found. Read on and find out what the costs are made up of, and how you can plan and implement facade security in a way that will save you money.
At a Glance: All Costs for Fall Protection on Facades
If you have an all-in-one package with a provider, the cost of standard products and services should be included. These include, for example: the subsurface test, risk assessment and problem solving. Only if more complex special designs have to be developed will additional costs arise - to include the working hours of the 3D technician, for example, or for the production of additional components . But most of the fall protection systems on facades can be put together with prefabricated materials like a kind of Lego set.
Material costs will depend on the parts used: fastenings, rail systems, complete systems, PPE and more. Tested products have the advantage that the safety system is reliable in the long term and can withstand annual safety checks without requiring too much repair work.
Some products you can assemble yourself; for others, you’ll need a certified fitter. This is where assembly costs can add up: they’ll include working hours, travel and overnight stays. In the course of an all-in-one package, these costs are usually included in a flat rate. Theoretically, however, you could also hire your own certified fitter independently.
During (or after) the assembly, a legally required documentation of the full protection system must be created. With the free INNO | doc tool, this step can be done quickly and with hardly any costs for additional working hours from the commissioned assembly company.
With large projects it’s common that custom-made products, such as special gliders or fastenings, must first be tested and approved for use. Here, costs for the technician's hours can arise. In the case of smaller construction projects, however, it’s less common the need for special items and additional approvals arises.
The annual inspection and maintenance costs are based on the calculated working hours of the certified expert who, according to current legal standards, must check the fall protection on the facade at least once a year and inspect the documentation.
Total Costs for Facade Security
The complete cost for facade protection will of course be dependent on numerous factors, especially the scale of the project. It should range between 1,200 euros for minor requirements and up to 1.2 million euros for larger projects [these aren’t guaranteed figures].
The Total Cost Depends On:
- accessibility, i.e. how easily can the fitter access the fastening positions, and can the facade safety system get by with standard, existing products?
- the construction phase, i.e. is the construction project still in its early stages, leaving many options open, or is it already so far along that the facade has to be lowered again, or the only remaining solutions that won’t disturb the aesthetics are cost-intensive?
- the materials, i.e. can standard materials be used or does the complexity of the structure require the use of custom-made products?
- the building’s characteristics, i.e. how much material and effort is required for the type of facade, regarding its height and complexity?
3 Cost-Saving Tips for Facade Security
Drawing on our years of experience - both from our successes, and the mistakes we’ve learned from along the way - we here at Innotech feel confident we can share these helpful tips as experts in the field of facade fall protection:
- The earlier you plan, the more cost-effective your facade security will be.
As a rule, you can assume that early planning is associated with a cost factor of 1. This deteriorates from 1.5 to 10 the later you deal with fall protection in your building process. Particularly with facade construction, challenges can be identified in the early construction phases, and suitable solutions can be found.
- Think through your facade security concept in a team and with experts.
You can’t just attach a fall protection system to the outer shell of the building like you’re hanging a picture on the wall with a nai . Here, some components have to be well thought out and planned in order to prevent the risk of a false illusion of safety.
- Get an experienced fall protection partner on board at an early stage.
The collaborative development of a security concept brings specialists from several areas together at one table. You can save a lot of long term costs this way: with an experienced partner’s guidance, cost-intensive errors can be avoided and you’ll benefit in the long term from professional and well-thought-out fall protection for your facade.
Conclusion: The Cost of Fall Protection on Facades
Roland K. learned something from our story above: In the future, he’ll make sure to plan for facade protection early in the building process in order to avoid costly surprises. Understandably, the costs can seem higher at first when professional experts come on board. But in comparison with the cost explosion of a facade security planned too late and too poorly, it’s a smart long-term investment to involve a partner you trust at an early stage.
Want to find out more about fall protection on facades? Download our free whitepaper now, and feel free to contact us any time with any questions you might have.