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Timber & Timber Frames

New Timber Frame Q-Mark from BM Trada


BM Trada has launched a new Timber Frame Q-Mark certification scheme aimed at improving the quality and performance of timber frame used within the construction industry and helping manufacturers prepare for CE marking.

The new Timber Frame Elements Q-Mark scheme replaces an “Interim” Scheme which was introduced in January 2010 to provide a transition to CE marking for members of the original Structural Timber Association Q-Mark scheme. However, this scheme, which offered three modules in fabrication, design and erection, came to an end on 31 March 2013.

With the provisional harmonized standard for timber frame elements – prEN 14732 now delayed until February 2015, the new certification scheme will provide a route for manufacturers to achieve product certification in compliance with the draft standard until the harmonized standard becomes available.

Although open to existing members of the Interim scheme fabrication module, the new scheme will no longer offer certification for the Design or Erection modules. However, it will take into consideration how each element/panel is designed, linking together manufacture and design.

The scheme will be open to all manufacturers, with previous Interim Scheme members able to upgrade their certification in three stages. Stage 1 will offer automatic entry to the scheme for existing members who have at least a basic factory production control (FPC) system in place.

Within 6 months of entry to the new scheme, members will be asked to complete Stage 2. This involves making a technical submission to BM TRADA to demonstrate that their product complies with the six essential requirements of prEN 14732, in relation to initial type testing / calculation.

Stage 3 will take the form of a formal FPC audit to confirm full compliance with prEN 14732. This will need to be completed within 3 months of approval of stage 2. Satisfactory completion of this audit is expected to enable a full FPC compliance certificate to be issued on publication of the harmonised standard, allowing for the application of the CE mark.

Explaining the development of the scheme, Mark Wilkinson BM TRADA Commercial Business Development Manager, Building and Product Services says:

“The timber frame industry is expected to see a surge in demand in response to Government energy efficiency initiatives such as the Green Deal. As a result, the industry needs a certification scheme to ensure it can offer quality products which comply with the highest performance standards.

“The BM TRADA Timber Frame Elements Q-Mark scheme will provide unambiguous evidence of compliance with the relevant standards, offering manufacturers a clear route towards CE marking and providing specifiers and regulatory and inspection authorities with the appropriate information for them to identify suitable products.”

Obtaining third party certification through the BM TRADA Q-Mark scheme will also offer a range of benefits for members. It provides members with a strong competitive advantage, by demonstrating that they are working to established performance requirements and enhances the company’s reputation for quality, helping it to generate new and repeat business and improving customer loyalty.

For further information on the BM TRADA Timber Frame Elements Q-Mark scheme, contact Stephen Russell, 01494 569667 / srussell@bmtrada.com