What is MEP services design?

What is MEP services design?

If you’re building your own home, embarking on a redevelopment project, or any other variety of non-industry-insider, you may be unfamiliar with the term MEP. This acronym stands for Mechanical, Electrical, and Plumbing – or Public Health depending on the engineer’s specific area of expertise, or indeed preference.

MEP is often an underappreciated part of architecture and engineering, yet it also plays a vital role in successful building planning and performance. Building systems make the structure more energy-efficient, comfortable, and ultimately, cost-efficient. We like to think of MEP as the unsung hero of building design. Let’s look closer at what it all means.

Breaking down MEP

On a construction project, MEP is handled by an MEP services designer. They’re in charge of designing and engineering building services installations or systems. The mechanical aspect will comprise heating, cooling, and ventilation, otherwise known as HVAC. These systems are essential to making the building a livable space, keeping the temperature and airflow comfortable.

Electrical building services consist of interior, exterior and emergency lighting; the power supply; phone lines, intercom and internet; and fire containment, control and detection. Depending on the building use or location, it also might cover security and lightning protection systems.

Public health or plumbing can be used to refer to domestic water, sewage and surface water drainage services. Running water is, of course, another vital component of making a building fit for occupancy.

However, the remit of the MEP designer is growing. As energy-saving and low carbon solutions become increasingly important, the MEP engineer will often be charged with their design and installation. They may also work closely with architects or lighting designers to ensure building users enjoy enough natural light.

Why an integrated approach is important

At the design stage, an integrated approach to MEP engineering yields better results than specifying each building system in isolation. This is because buildings are like bodies; each system interacts and supports another. Facilitating these interactions is difficult when the design process is isolated. For example, you could end up with critical equipment obstructing each other.

Therefore, MEP encompasses the in-depth design, selection and expert installation of building services – as opposed to drafting in individual tradespeople to install a system. Whereas a tradesperson may select equipment based on convention, a team of MEP engineers will research the best design according to the principles of engineering vis-a-vis the wider building design.

As such, an MEP services designer will have a comprehensive understanding of a broad range of disciplines, including dynamics, mechanics, thermodynamics, heat transfer, chemistry, electricity, and computer science. They bring a lot more to building design than merely fitting pipes or wires – they’ll really make a building work.

Draft in the experts

DJHC deliver the integrated, innovative MEP design solutions you need. We offer complete design packages from RIBA Stages 0-3 and 4-5 in the nationally accepted BSRIA BG6/2018 format.

Our trained engineers and technicians are experienced in so much more than just fitting equipment. They use the latest Computer Aided Design and Revit software, alongside other specialised packages such as Relux, IES™ and DesignBuilder™, to create efficient systems at the design stage.

We also ensure all our recommendations closely follow CIBSE and other industry guidelines. This ensures the project is compliant with all regulations and industry standards. With DJHC, you can be confident you’ve got the right MEP expertise, no matter the project size or scope.



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