Raised access flooring is an ingenious solution to a very modern problem. With so many high technology devices in modern offices what do you do with all of the unsightly, and potentially hazardous, wires, cables and power supply cords?
Modern offices deal with this problem by using raised access flooring. This is flooring that is constructed on top of your existing floor and the void created underneath is used to hide unsightly and potentially hazardous trailing power cords, wires and cables.
This means that trailing cables are hidden away neatly, protected from possible damage and no longer present a tripping hazard for customers and staff.
Choosing flooring to meet your needs
If you are thinking of using raised access flooring as a solution to the problem of concealing cabling there are a variety of different access flooring panels on the market today to choose from, with the most common being:
Die-cast aluminium panels – frequently used in workplaces such as pharmaceutical and laboratory facilities;
Steel floor panels – these panels not only look great but are resilient and versatile;
Reinforced steel floor panels – these are steel panels which are reinforced with a concrete-like core and are appropriate for heavy static and rolling loads;
Panels may be covered with a variety of flooring finishes appropriate for your needs and requirements.
Other critical factors
Before you decide which panels are appropriate for your particular circumstances there are a few more factors you must consider.
These factors include your office layout, the heavier items of equipment in your office, cooling/ ventilation requirements and other issues that may determine the best choice for your raised flooring:
Office Layout – consider your office layout thoroughly. Where will you locate heavy equipment such as computer servers? Where are the areas of high pedestrian traffic flow? The answers to these questions will determine the type and location of your flooring and the type of supporting materials used;
Loading – particularly bulky equipment may exceed the load bearing capabilities of some types of raised flooring and may require additional support. So be aware of the weight of larger items and think about the location of these items. Also consider if the location of those items will be permanent, or may change over time;
Cooling requirements – some larger items such as computer servers may need cooling and raised flooring can be configured to maximise airflow and deliver cool air where it is needed most;
Other considerations – other considerations include locations of existing pipes, ducts and drains, ceiling heights, uneven floors and if there is a requirement to install raised flooring over surfaces of different heights;
Raised access flooring has many benefits, however, with so many critical factors affecting which type of flooring is right for you, it is vital that you discuss your requirements with an expert raised flooring advisor.