Most construction crews don't understand the process of inspecting rental trench shoring equipment. While most rental firms perform maintenance on their shoring equipment, it is essential to realise that they are used by different clients and receive all manner of treatment. It leads to rapid wear, and while some of the wear is acceptable, some tears should raise the alarm. Understanding how to inspect a trench shoring equipment is, therefore, the most critical step when planning to hire one. This article highlights some of the vital structural elements you should pay close attention to.
Wide beams rest on the walls of a trench to support the soil load. However, continuous heavy loading over an extended period can lead to bending in the middle of the wall. Consequently, this weakens the structural integrity of the wall, thereby making it dangerous for continued use. Notably, some rental firms will overload the opposite side of the wall to straighten the bend. While that will bring the equipment to its original shape, the structural weakness that is created cannot be reversed. Therefore, ensure that the wall is free of — or has minimal — dents and punctures of waffling during the inspection. If there is any noticeable bend, then the rental firm should provide you with evidence that the equipment's capacity has been downgraded.
The end beam on a trench shoring equipment resembles a diving board, and it is welded to the wall. In case of a yield strength failure, the end beam exhibits characteristic bending at the bottom end of the shield. It is because most of the weight and pressure on a shoring shield is found at the bottom of the excavation, thereby overburdening the welds. If you see that the end beam is not bent, it means that the welds are still strong enough to hold the beam in place. However, if the end beam is bent, the deflection must be straightened immediately. If you must hire shoring equipment that shows the signs of a bent end beam, then you should ask the rental firm if it has been downgraded. If they answer in the affirmative, then you can rent the equipment for minor excavations.
When the shield needs to be raised a couple of feet from the bottom of an excavation floor, spreaders are used. The spreaders are connected on both ends via round holes on the surface of the shields referred to as spreader receivers. Since the shoring equipment is somewhat suspended when using spreaders, the holes can lose their shape or crack over time. As you conduct equipment inspection, ensure that the spreader receivers are perfect circles and not oval. If they are the latter shape, the receivers will reject the spreaders, thereby raising the danger levels of hiring the equipment as is.