Increased efficiency with Leica BLK3D Imager

MAF Associates was founded in 2015 by Mike Fox, building on three decades of experience in the construction industry. The company has grown by more than 500% in less than two years because of record demand for specialised professionals in the sector. 

As one of the few qualified and competent cladding experts in the UK, demand for MAF’s services grew rapidly after the tragic events of Grenfell in 2017.

With thousands of residential premises requiring inspection, either due to cladding issues or revamped fire regulations, MAF had to grow the team from two employees to 15 in just a few months to meet this demand.

“We inspect and evaluate the exterior of a building, providing insights as to the overall condition and the need for additional services for the maintenance of the structure. We can identify the first signs of a potentially larger problem before extensive damage is done” explains Richard Morris, façade engineer and surveyor at MAF Associates.

This type of survey is not simple. It’s a complete analysis of the building’s construction, materials, design, and function, undertaken by fully qualified facade engineers and risk assessors. The team wanted to move away from traditional, time-consuming methods such as laser distance metres and TPS technology.

MAF invested in four Leica BLK3D handheld imagers to make measurements faster and easier.

"We use the BLK3D on 80% of our projects. It allows us to perform quick exterior surveys on large properties in minutes, not hours. Unlike other traditional methods, a survey is done with safety and efficiency for our team and without disturbing the building’s occupants", says Morris.

Premises should be critically examined to identify any potential faults and minimise risk. An exterior house inspection can reveal the defects that may not be readily apparent to an unqualified examiner. The height of a building is important for assessing fire risk/fire resistance; the key is to know if the building is more than 18 meters tall.

“We can fully document our work with professional-grade accuracy. We use the BLK3D to get height measurements to assess fire risk and compliance with standards. Inaccessible areas and long setup time are not a problem anymore; being able to make quick in-picture measurements from a corner of a street is a game-changer for our business,” says Morris.

MAF has grown its turnover to over £2 million within two years, investing in the latest equipment to ensure it can deliver detailed reports as quickly and efficiently as possible. MAF can play a role in rebuilding the industry’s reputation and ensuring that buildings are 100% safe and fit for purpose moving forward.

“Inspections are an essential part of maintaining a safe property and minimising risk, so having the right tools, like the BLK3D, to complete the projects efficiently is huge for our success,” highlights Morris.