What Does a Structural Engineer Do?

What Does a Structural Engineer Do?

A structural engineer has a key role to play during the construction process and is more concerned with the physical integrity of the structure in question. This could range from residential homes to bridges and tunnels, meaning that a structural engineer has a wide range of responsibilities such as ensuring the safety and durability of the structure, so they usually have to solve more technical problems as well as helping the architect achieve their vision of the project or structure.

With so much involved in the role of a structural engineer, we have taken a look at what the job entails and how they could potentially help you.

What Do They Do?

During the building process, a structural engineer is there every step of the way. This will include helping create the initial design of the structure to ensure that it will be structurally sound as well as durable. They also work closely with architects to help solve any problems which may occur during the building process, as well as ensuring that once the project has been completed it will pass its inspection properly. The main focus of a structural engineer is the safety and feasibility of each project.

What Can They Help You With?

There are several reasons why you might need a structural engineer with the first being if you are looking to carry out a renovation on your home. When making any structural changes to your property or building, you will most probably require the help of a structural engineer. They will be able to provide you with structural drawings as well as calculations which will be used by your contractor during the work.

Additionally, this information may also need to passed on to Building Control to comply with Building Regulations or, depending on the scale of the project, passed on to obtain planning permission. Of course, whether you require the assistance of a structural engineer or not will depend on the type of renovation being carried out. Projects which usually require the assistance of a structural engineer generally include:

  • Removing chimney breasts
  • Converting a loft
  • Installing solar panels
  • Building an extension
  • Underpinning floors
  • Modifying or removing internal walls

It is important to remember, however, that if you are looking to change the structure of the building in any way, you will require approval from building control and to obtain this, you will technical advice and guidance from a structural engineer.

Structural engineers aren’t just there to help with the renovation of your property, but also assist you if you spot a structural problem. This could range from signs of subsidence like cracks in the wall to a sag in the ceiling, for which you would need to instruct a structural engineer to carry out an inspection.

Although you could instruct a chartered surveyor to carry out a survey on your property, you could get a much more detailed investigation carried out by a structural engineer who will be able to identify structural issues as well as advise you on how to resolve them.

Another reason you may need the help of a structural engineer is if you require an expert witness report. You may need this if you have a disagreement with someone else regarding a structural matter related to your property. A structural engineer will provide you with an unbiased view and provide you with a report as well as giving you advice.

If you are looking for a structural engineer in Cornwall or the surrounding area we can assist you. If you have any questions regarding the services we provide, then please do not hesitate to contact us on 01579 345777.

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