In today’s manufacturing and scientific research industries, choosing the right type of clean room makes a significant difference in controlled environments.
Especially in today’s world when technology and the needs of the public are changing quickly, being able to adapt immediately while maintaining the necessary cleanliness standards is important.
Clean rooms help businesses and industries control specialized environments that have air flow rate, pressurization, temperature, humidity and special filtration requirements.
For some companies, a permanent, fixed structure that serves as a clean space is the right answer to meeting their needs.
For many others, however, a prefab clean room (otherwise known as portable, softwall or modular clean rooms) is the best answer. Prefab rooms are free standing and are often constructed using panel walls. They can be easily reconfigured and are designed for functionality.
Here are some guidelines to assist you with determining when a prefab clean room is the better choice for your facility.
Budget is often the No. 1 consideration when making any major business decisions. The type of clean room you choose is no exception.
Clean rooms can be significant investments. Many companies choose to go with prefab spaces because of their cost savings. Permanent structures can cost up to $1,500 per square foot. For a 10’ X 10’ room, that is a $150,000 price tag.
Additional costs can incur as well when constructing a building addition, from securing multiple contractors, to inspections and design and construction permits. The installation of a new permanent duct system, especially when a fume hood is required, can cause the price of your project to go up significantly, as can the need for additional plumbing and electrical components.
All of these factors can add to design time as well, which can expand your overall timeline. With any construction project, time often equals money.
A portable clean room, on the other hand, typically costs between $10,000 and $15,000 for the same 10’ X 10’ sized structure. Because this type of room is prefabricated, it can be installed quickly and often by employees rather than paid contractors.
Need For Flexibility
Traditional clean rooms are permanent. If a company experiences growth and must move to a new location to accommodate that growth, leaving the former clean room and constructing a new one can be a costly endeavor.
Portable clean rooms can be easily reconfigured. They can become larger or smaller, and they can be moved to different locations either within your facility or to another building altogether.
This allows businesses to change their clean room space based on their new needs … without having to tear down walls and incur any new costs to construct a new clean room.
Whether a company is new or established, this can offer a significant time and cost savings both up front and in the long run.
A Fast Timeline
As mentioned above, permanent hardwall rooms can take a significant amount of time to design, deliver the materials and build. If additional features like ducts and HVAC systems are required for installation, this can undoubtedly add a considerable amount of time to your project timeline.
On the other hand, modular prefabricated clean rooms can be manufactured, delivered and installed before a conventional clean room can be designed. In fact, because all the components of a modular clean room have been manufactured, construction consists of assembling the parts together.
A faster timeline is generally true even with the addition of customizable features such as cabinets, workbenches and fume hoods. Modular clean room design elements also may include customizable components such as floor-to-ceiling windows versus panel walls, different door types and monitoring systems that track parameters like temperature and humidity.
Even with these additional features, the timeline for ordering and installing a prefab clean room is much quicker than a permanent structure. And, faster delivery and installation of a clean room allows you to get your product out the door faster and avoid costly downtime.
A Better Choice
For manufacturing and laboratory facilities, prefab clean rooms are often the better choice for several reasons: cost, flexibility and timeline.
With any operation, these are important factors when determining which clean room best fits the needs of your space.
When choosing the right prefab clean room, make sure you work with a manufacturer that has:
- Extensive knowledge of clean room classifications and ISO classes
- High manufacturing standards
- Customizable options
- The ability to work within your timeline for delivery
Our article, Portable Clean Room Manufacturers You Should Avoid, further details what you should and should not look for in a partner so that you can quickly meet the cleanliness needs of your facility.