Standard Practice for Laboratories Engaged in Testing of Building Sealants
Importance of Prequalification— For required accuracy of test results and reliability of certification, it is essential that testing laboratories be prequalified. This practice establishes those qualifications.
Although testing laboratories may be qualified in accordance with this practice, it is important for the contracting authority to consider the relationship of the testing laboratory with other interested parties before engaging the laboratory to perform the testing. The other interested parties in the project usually consist of the manufacturer of the material to be tested, the contractor (bidder), the owner of the project (user and contracting authority), and the architect who serves as the owner's agent in preparing the contract documents.
Many sealant manufacturers have their own qualified testing facilities that are used to conduct research and maintain quality control of their products. Generally, the companies that have such facilities are willing to certify as to the performance standards with which their products comply. The contracting authority should determine if there are conflicting interests in such a relationship. The contracting authority may prefer that the product testing to ascertain conformance with specific performance standards and the reporting of such testing be performed by a qualified but independent testing laboratory. The contract documents should make this requirement known so that bidders can bid accordingly.
The testing of each caulking and sealant for each and every project can be costly. On a small building project, the cost of testing, if required, may be more than the cost of the sealant materials. On a large project, on the other hand, the cost of testing a sealant with accompanying certification by a qualified independent testing laboratory may be small in comparison to the sealant materials and commensurate with the assurances desired by the contracting authority.
Requirements in Contract Documents:
In addition to specifying the performance standards that the caulking and sealants to be used on a project shall be in compliance with, state that proof of compliance shall be in the form of certification by a testing laboratory meeting the requirements of this practice.
If the contracting authority desires that the testing and certification be by an independent testing laboratory this additional requirement should be included with the requirements stated in 4.3.1.
1.1 This practice describes the qualifications, including minimum requirements for personnel and equipment, duties, responsibilities, and services of independent commercial materials testing laboratories engaged in the testing of caulking and sealants used in building construction.
1.2 This standard does not purport to address all of the safety concerns, if any, associated with its use. It is the responsibility of the user of this standard to establish appropriate safety and health practices and determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use.
1.3 The subcommittee with jurisdiction of this standard is not aware of any similar or equivalent ISO standard.
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