On-Site vs Lab Based Slip Testing?

On-Site vs Lab Based Slip Testing?

Posted: 31st Mar 2020

Posted by: The National Testing Team

Which Is Best, On-Site vs Lab Based Slip Resistance Testing?

Before getting a slip resistance test on your flooring it’s helpful to understand the different options available to you. This blog will inform you of the different kinds and how they will differ from one another in their results. This will ensure you are fully aware of how to interpret the result and help you to make the best choice before installing flooring and before making any improvements that might be needed.

On-site testing

National Testing provides rapid and responsive field testing services, primarily to the UK for infrastructure, construction, property, legal and facility management sectors to name a few. These tests can be done on a variety of materials including:

  • Floors and floor coverings
  • Natural stone surfaces
  • Concrete floors
  • Road pavements
  • Road markings

The benefit of testing on-site is that you will get a more realistic figure for the usual conditions or surroundings. For example, what the effects of footfall are on floor materials. Therefore, this test would be ideal to use on existing floors to investigate whether or not they are still at the correct standard.

Lab Based Slip Testing

At National Testing our lab tests are designed to help specify floor materials for new and refurbished premises, assess the suitability of existing floor materials for changes in use and to provide management information to identify how different factors may affect the safety of the floor surface. Customers who regularly use this service include:

  • Designers, architects and flooring specifiers
  • Flooring manufacturers
  • Flooring contractors, suppliers and distributors
  • Forensic architects and engineers
  • Property owners, landlords and employers

Lab testing is a great option when deciding whether to purchase a new floor type or not before you have to make a commitment to the expense of the material. It’s also extremely useful in producing comparisons of which floorings suit better in which conditions. For example, rubber mulch may be best suited for playgrounds as it’s slip resistance is low and it is spongy if children were to fall on it.

How do they differ?

Lab slip testing often produces a lower slip resistance than onsite testing. Mostly, it is found that flooring materials or tiles have a lower slip resistance when they have been installed, compared to when they are tested in the lab environment. This is due to the factors that affect flooring when in a live and realistic environment. Some of these factors are as follows:

  • The process of installation, where grouting has been done, brings out wearing on tiles.
  • The handling of the tiles when they are being installed, and the workmen walking over them.
  • Chemicals that may have been left over from the production process.
  • Any cleaning that is done after installation.
  • Environmental factors like rain or sunlight, where the floor is installed in an external area.

National Testing have expertise in assessing a wide range of flooring materials whether you require this on premises, in the lab or need advice on which method is more practical for your needs. Get in touch with our knowledgeable team to find out more.

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