Last month, we revealed we’d been busy undertaking a UK-wide research exercise in a bid to understand more about the construction industry’s views on lead, while also improving our knowledge of what our customers want.
Alongside in-depth focus groups and face-to-face interviews, we also commissioned Britain’s largest industry survey of its kind, which extracted the views of over 250 lead merchants and end users.
While the results indicated a lot of positives about the lead industry, the survey also exposed a clear lack of quality accreditation knowledge.
In fact, a surprising 70% of those surveyed agreed end users and contractors often prefer rolled over machine cast lead because it has a British Standard (BS), while both end users and merchants of lead acknowledged deficiencies in their knowledge of the metal.
Of the 250 construction professionals surveyed – including roofing, timber and builders merchants, specialist lead roofing contractors, roofers and general builders – 60% were also of the opinion that rolled lead is of superior quality to machine cast.
The results of the study clearly underscore the need for education in the lead industry, particularly when it comes to accreditation and the differences between machine cast and rolled lead.
As the only UK company to offer the complete lead range – machine cast, rolled and sandcast – we’re keen to use the survey results to fill in any knowledge gaps when it comes to quality assurances.
It’s clear that the lack of a BS accreditation for machine cast lead underpins the perception that machine cast lead is of inferior quality to rolled. However, many in the industry are unaware that machine cast lead can in fact never qualify for BSEN12588, as it is only applicable to lead manufactured through a milling process.
While we also supply BS-accredited rolled lead, our core product is BBA 86/1764 accredited machine cast lead. Our machine cast lead is manufactured through a continuous casting process – following the BS specification of rolled lead. So not only does it conform to the BS rolled lead spec, it also has the added benefits of the BBA quality checks and controls.
The British Board of Agrément (BBA) certificate is one of the UK’s leading notified bodies offering approval, certification and test services to manufacturers of products and systems supplying the construction industry. Alongside the same standard requirements of the BS, the BBA includes twice annual external surveillance visits and a 3-year review on product quality and service levels, as well as internal quality checks.
Over the coming months, we will be taking our message across the industry, and welcome any questions should you want to get in touch.